So you’re single on Valentine’s Day? Is that making you feel down or lonely? Have you ever thought about why that is?
There are so many films and TV shows and books out there that tell us that if we’re single on Valentine’s Day we should be depressed and feel like a looser that for the most part everyone just seems to accept that they should be bawling their eyes out and singing to themselves Bridget Jones style while consuming their own body weight in chocolate and alcohol if they so happen to be single on Valentine’s Day.
I’ve been single for a number of years now and I couldn’t care less about the fact that I am single on Valentine’s Day and the reason for that is because:
My happiness is not dependent on another person
And neither should yours be.
That is the implication behind the assumption that you should feel sad because you’re single on Valentine’s Day; that you and your life on your own are not good enough without someone else. That in fact your happiness is not something you control. That you need someone else in your life to make your life full and have meaning.
As far as I’m concerned this is a complete cop out and the only thing it will lead to is dysfunctional and unhappy relationships. Absconding from responsibility for your own happiness is a recipe for disaster.
I have watched so many friends, including myself in my younger years, bounce from relationship to relationship just because they (and I) hadn’t worked out how to be happy for themselves first.
Of course it’s easier to be happy with your life when you’ve got someone smiling at you telling you you’re beautiful (or handsome) and that they love you. Who wouldn’t feel good hearing those words?
Unless you have chosen that person wisely however, which is unlikely if you’re just desperate to be with someone, your life is not actually going to improve by that person’s presence. All you will have done is put a bandage over the things you weren’t happy with in your own life before. You have just hidden them under another person’s affections.
Even if you did manage to chose wisely and your new partner is actually a really good match for you, if you haven’t fixed the things that were making you unhappy to be on your own previously, what will happen if that person ever goes away? What if they break up with you or you break up with them, or maybe even something worse happens? You don’t know. Unexpected things happen in life and if you make your entire happiness dependent on one person you leave yourself extremely exposed to being in an even more unhappy position if anything were to happen that then stops that person from being a part of your life.
If you’re feeling sad that you’re single on Valentine’s Day, ask yourself why.
What is it about being single that is upsetting you? Is it that you miss having someone to do things with? If so, create that with your friends. Is it that you want someone to buy you flowers? Why don’t you buy yourself flowers and create the lovely things you want in your life for yourself.Create your own happiness.
If you’re happy with your life it shouldn’t matter if you’re single on Valentine’s Day or any other day of the year. Any future relationships you have are likely to be a thousands times better if you focus on achieving this, your own happiness, first.
There really is such a disturbing amount of commentary in popular culture that implies that our lives don’t have value until we’re in a relationship from all the films with story lines where the protagonist is upset and unhappy in their lives until they find love and then everything is fine (Eat, Pray, Love I’m looking at you) to the way we’re told (especially women) that getting married should be the best and most important day of our lives.
I’ve had a lot of great and important days in my life. Like the day my first book was published or the day I quit my job to travel the world. I don’t want any one day to be the day that all my happiness hinges on. That sounds like a sure fire route to unhappiness as far as I’m concerned. Especially when that one day is not just controlled by me but by another person too.
So here’s a suggestion, focus on making yourself happy. Create a life that you love so much that someone would have to be pretty damn exceptional for you to allow them to be a part of your life in that way.
Most relationships aren’t entered into with that much thought and consideration. People jump in quickly based on emotions driven by little more than some errant hormones. For me to consider having a relationship with anyone at this moment in time they would have to be pretty f**king spectacular because I don’t need them to make my life complete. It already is.
Create a life that is so good it stops you from needing someone and instead then lets you choose someone.
We will never be truly happy if we don’t take responsibility for our own happiness and make it a priority.
What are you doing for yourself this Valentine’s Day to make yourself happy? Let me know in the comments below.
This post was originally published on The Huffington Post