Being single can be difficult at times. Dating, or trying to get dates, can be frustrating and discouraging. Meeting new people can be fun, but you might long for a close, long-term relationship with one other person. If you find yourself staring longingly at couples holding hands, it may be time to re-evaluate, and learn to appreciate the many benefits of single life. While being single can sometimes make you feel sad and lonely, there are times when its more beneficial for your mental health.
1. More Time for the Gym
Many studies have shown that single people exercise more, and overall live healthier lifestyles. Whether it’s the spare time or the desire to look your best (or a combination of the two), single men and women tend to care more about their health and well-being. Exercise improves your mood by releasing endorphins and reducing cortisol, a stress hormone that can make you more susceptible to stress.
2. Rediscover Yourself
One of the best things about being single is that you have the opportunity to rediscover yourself. Your alone time will cause you to be more introspective and develop insight into what makes you happy, and what your core values are. As you take a walk through a park or enjoy a cup of coffee alone, you can re-evaluate your goals. As you learn to feel comfortable in your own company, you’ll discover that happiness comes not from another person, but from within.
3. Better Friendships
Single adults have more time to network with others and develop outside friendships. You can schedule more time to be with (or make) friends, joining friends for birthdays and weekend trips that will make lifelong memories. In 2009, the Journal of the National Medical Association conducted a study that showed people without social support were more likely to suffer from anxiety or depression. Friendships reduce stress and anxiety, while increasing happiness and confidence.
4. Find New Interests
As a single person, you have additional time that you can use to develop new hobbies and interests. If you’ve always wanted to join a yoga or a spin class, join a hiking group or book club, you have time to dive in to new hobbies. Research shows that participating in hobbies can improve your mood and your ability to cope with stress.
If you’re single and struggling with sadness or loneliness a licensed therapist can help. Give my office a call today and let’s schedule a time to talk.