At last month’s Golden Globe awards, Tina Fey and Amy Poehler took a moment to warn Taylor Swift to stay away from Michael J. Fox’s son.  As Tina Fey said, “She needs some ‘me time’ to learn about herself!”  Even though it was all in jest, the joke probably rang true for a lot of people. After all, we all have that one friend who, much like Taylor Swift, never seems to be able to go more than a month or two without dating.

For her, every new guy is “the one” (until they break up, anyway). And before you can even organize a girls’ night out to cheer her up after the latest breakup, she’s already gushing about the cute guy she met at the coffee shop/film festival/hot yoga, etc. At times it can be concerning. After all, she seems to take up the interests and hobbies of the guy in her life rather than having her own. And somehow, no matter what wild shenanigans you get up to, your friend can’t seem to enjoy any of it unless there’s a man by her side. What’s worse is seeing friends who are so afraid to be alone that they would rather stay in an unhappy relationship than venture off on their own. Excuse me while I go into Mom mode but I have to explain, I don’t say any of this to be critical of serial daters. I say it because I am sick of seeing people (both men and women) who seem truly incapable of being happy when they are single. It’s totally possible to be happy and here are some good reasons to let yourself be single for a while:

  •  It’s a chance to get to know yourself. Obviously meeting someone new can offer opportunities to explore new hobbies that you might not have tried on your own. But be honest with yourself. If you really aren’t into playing marathon sessions of Call of Duty, then don’t do it! Maybe you would rather spend your time wandering around a museum, or checking out weird performance art in underground venues, or going to Riverdale Farm and hanging out with all the barnyard animals. Everyone has something that lights a spark inside them; figure out what kinds of activities make you happy and then keep on doing them.
  • Learn to enjoy the moment. I once had a night out with a newly single friend that I thought was a total success. We met up, went for drinks, and spent the rest of the night dancing our asses off and being silly. Only at the end of the night, she was in tears because her latest fling wasn’t answering her calls. She allowed herself to get so upset by this that it was as though the rest of the night had never happened. She may as well have been at home waiting for the phone to ring. My point is that some people are so concerned with having a significant other in their lives that they miss out on all the fun that’s happening around them. And what good is that? Life is easier once you let your hair down and stop spending every second worrying about whether or not you’ll meet someone new (don’t worry, you will).
  • Take time to examine your past relationships and shortcomings. This one can be hard. A lot of people would rather jump into a new relationship figuring that since they are with a different person, they will have a different/better relationship. But if you never examine your past mistakes you’ll be doomed to repeat them. So rather than blaming your ex for everything that went wrong, take a step back to look at your own behaviour. Look at what you could improve on and also (this one is paramount) decide what your deal breakers are so that you don’t waste time on someone you can’t be happy with.
  • Learn to be happy while being single. Being single is entirely different than being alone. Losing a boyfriend or girlfriend doesn’t mean that you’ve also lost your entire circle of friends. True, it can be much harder to be single if you don’t have a strong support network but that’s also a reason why it’s important to see your friends regularly whether you are in a relationship or not. They are the ones that will pick you up and dust you off. And they are the ones that can make you laugh until your stomach hurts. And maybe, just maybe, as you spend more time with your friends, you will realize that you are actually enjoying yourself sans boyfriend or girlfriend.

All of this may seem daunting at first but I can promise you that you will be happier for it. It’s so important to truly know yourself and be happy with yourself whether you are single or attached. Finally, stop buying into the BS of believing that you have to find your “other half.” You don’t need anyone to complete you, you are already a whole person. Now go forth, be single, and enjoy yourself!