Human beings always want what they don’t have instead of appreciating what they’ve got. We are always focused on our lack of something instead of our abundance of something. We always want what someone else has instead of enjoying what we have. We are always comparing our stuff to someone else’s stuff. We are always thinking “If I only had this, that, and most especially him, I would be happy.
This wanting creates a longing that keeps you from enjoying all the abundance you have right now in your life while being single. Don’t get me wrong, it’s lovely to have someone in your life. It’s lovely to have someone to share special moments, secrets, affection, and sexy time. And I know plenty of people that are in relationships who are absolutely lonely, longing for single-hood, and solitude – which speaks to my point again. It’s not about being single or in a relationship. It’s about enjoying the status you have right now.
Right now, I am single, and I have to admit, I love it! I actually love where I am right at this moment. That’s not to say if Mr. Right (in the flavor of Dwayne Johnson, Daniel Craig or Shamar Moore) rolled up and looked into my eyes, I wouldn’t ride happily into the sunset with him. And I do mean ride . . . lol! But, there is absolutely no reason to bitch, moan, and wine in the meantime. It is my intention, to enjoy every bit of my single-dom until I am finally found by couple-hood, and take residence in the house at the end of the block with the white picket fence – or in my case a penthouse condo with a view of the beach!
So you might ask, what is there to appreciate about being alone; about not having a date on every major holiday; about not having a date every Friday night. I say plenty!
1 – Appreciate your own company! I can’t stress this one enough. You are never alone if you enjoy being with you. If YOU can’t stand being with you, why would anyone else want to be with you? So many of us can’t spend 15 minutes alone with ourselves. We are on our cell phones, emailing, in chat rooms, online dating services, hanging on to friends, family, co-workers, and basically anyone who will put up with us until it’s time to go to bed. Then we can fall asleep and not think about the fact we are doing it alone. Personally, I enjoy being with me! I do what I like, when I like, with or without people. I don’t wait for someone to see the latest movie or try that new restaurant or gallery opening. I just go. And in the process I’ve got to admit, I’ve met some pretty great people – women and men – by venturing out, alone. I do things alone by choice. I’ve met so many people, and get so many invitations, I actually have to create space to be alone. And it is a choice, not chore. And even if there aren’t any invitations this week, and no one I know really enjoys salsa dancing, I go alone and still have a blast!
2 – Appreciate not having to share your space with someone. I can’t tell you how much I enjoy coming home not having to pick up, clean up, check in, follow up, coordinate with someone about what I do and what I want. There is nothing like the freedom of coming home, eating ice cream out of the carton, taking the last piece of chicken, not having to pick up or step over dirty underwear, or clean up dishes in the sink. There is nothing like ordering a pizza with all of MY favorite toppings and not worrying about if he wants to watch a chick flick tonight or the game! I like making my bed every day, keeping my place neat, having control of the remote, not tripping over giant shoes, and having privacy to talk to my girlfriends about girl stuff without having to leave the room. Having my place to myself rocks!
3 – Appreciate not having to deal with his people. Everyone has dated someone who’s inner circle and you just didn’t mesh. His mother may have been controlling, his sister a mooch, his brother a drama king, his father is a flirt, friends that never leave and are totally unsupportive, cousins that just drop in unannounced, co-workers that constantly dump on him, or that one friend that just gives you the creeps. When you’re just dating or single, you deal with who you want when you want. You make I clear who’s welcome in your space and who’s not. If you are uncomfortable, you decline the invitation. There are no expectations for you to do anything you don’t want to. And if you are ‘just dating,” even the guy will say “we don’t have to go if you don’t want to.” How awesome is that!!
4 – Appreciate that don’t have to shave, wax, or perform other grooming that can be hidden by clothing. I hate shaving, waxing, plucking, bleaching, combing, curling, etc. When you are single, I love getting back to the basics – a fresh face, easy hair (my stylish pony tail or curly waves), comfy clothes (leggings and sweats or other soft gear), and minimal make up. Not that I do too much more than that when I’m with a man in terms of makeup and my hair, but the waxing and shaving drive me crazy. Even if I pay someone to do it, you still have to keep up with it and honestly it’s not the most pleasant of sensations one can experience with someone else is touching you. And can I be honest – I’ve considered the amount of grooming I’ve had to do, compared to the excitement I had for the date. If I had to shave, wax, or flat iron something to get ready, and I wasn’t excited about him – well let’s just say, I remained hairy and dateless . . . lol!
5 – Appreciate the opportunity to meet and enjoy all types of men. When you are single, you meet the most amazing people, men and women. But I have really had an opportunity to meet and enjoy some really fascinating men from all walks of life, in all colors, shapes, and sizes. It has really given me an opportunity to appreciate men on a lot of different levels. I can appreciate the honorable men who wanted to protect me; the intellectual men, who can explain the most complex topic in a way that I can understand and process; the sensual men who are affectionate and love to touch me and demonstrate their desire for me; the sexual men who embrace their masculinity; the sensitive men who have read me poetry and feed me food; the artistic men who play music for me or cooked for me; and the men who were fathers and supported my choices as a single parent. And it also allowed me to see all men are “not alike”, “not dogs”, and “not players;” that most men are just like women – wanting love, connection, and affection. Yes, yes and definitely yes!
6 – Appreciate hanging out with your ladies. When women get involved with men they usually get on “the man’s train” so to speak. You have to catch them when you can. I love hanging out with my ladies, having girl talk, watching chick flicks, shopping, lunching, spa-ing, and so many other things you can only do with women. We need both a balance of feminine and masculine energy in our lives and we crave it when we don’t have it. So many of my married, coupled friends will say “I needed this,” or “I miss this,” and yet they don’t give it to themselves. As a single woman you can create all kinds of fun and exciting things your ladies will love to do. It will strengthen your relationship – if you are in one – and create a ton of fun for you, if you’re not.
7 – Appreciate not being financially tied to someone. I love spending my money the way I want to spend my money. If I want to do a spa day, I do it. If I want a new outfit, I buy it. If I want to blow it all on black in Vegas, I blow it. That’s not to say I am financially irresponsible, but it’s nice to be able to spend money on curtains, a nice dining room table, or a trip, rather than a play station and a vibrating man chair – ok the vibrating man chair has some redeeming qualities – but you get the point.
8 – Appreciate having the time to work on you. You have time to get over the past, let go of past dramas and traumas, and say good bye to those limiting beliefs about men and relationships once and for all! You have time to get counseling, coaching, group therapy, pray, chant, journal, kick boxing and whatever else it takes to rid yourself of any residue of past relationships. Get rid of your daddy-issues, your abandonment issues, move past your stories about men being liars and cheaters. Let go of your stories about the kind of men you like and the kind of men you don’t like i.e. your type; stories about men being “no-good”, stories about “all men being dogs”. You have the time to let your shit go! Once that’s purged and a clean new space emerges, you write a new story about you being loved and loving; about being amazing and worthy; a story where men appreciate you and you appreciate them. You’ll have time and space to learn to empower yourself and how to set and honor boundaries with men, with people for that matter. And you’ll have to notice that when treat yourself well – like you matter – men will too.
9 – Appreciate creating a life you love. This is a great time to follow your bliss and pursue your dreams. Now is the time to go after the promotion, make partner, renovate your condo, get that degree or certification, make a career change. Or, if you already have the job of your dreams, create the social life of your dreams. Get together with friends, throw parties, attend parties, take cruises, join a few MeetUps and meet new like-minded people – maybe even a few cool like-minded men. Or, if you already have the social life of your dreams, enrich your life. Finally take those cooking classes you’ve been dreaming of, start that business, sign up for ballroom dancing, take those music or voice lessons you’ve been talking about forever. Go skydiving, drive a race car, ride a motorcycle. Try zip-lining, bungee jumping, medieval folk dancing, or knitting. Create a kick ass life you can’t wait to wake up to.
10 – You can be incredibly selfish. When you are in a relationship, you are constantly weighing the impact of your choices on the man, or the relationship as a whole. People say they “do whatever they want” in a relationship and maybe within reason they do. And if you truly were that selfish, you wouldn’t likely remain in a relationship for very long. It’s hard to be with someone who is incredibly focused on them and only them. But when you are single – you can be as selfish as you please. People may comment on it, or even be annoyed by it and they also TOTALLY get it! People even work around it. When I tell my family not to contact me during my free weekends, they don’t. If I tell someone I a treating myself, they ask if they can come with me and treat themselves. And if I tell them “no – that this is my time,” they understand. It is perfectly acceptable that I focus on myself when I have the space and freedom to do so. I am not talking about being neglectful of responsibilities, I am talking about owning your energy, your time, all of your resources, and spending them as you please without permission or approval from anyone else. It’s self-ish. It’s actually spending what you have on yourself. Most women, especially in relationships, spend all they have on the man, the family, the relationship. There is very little left over for herself. When you are single this is one of the best times to fully enjoy spending everything you’ve got on the most important person in your life Y-O-U!!!
Ivy Allen Bio
Ivy is a stand for people living an extraordinary life. As a human resources professional for over 15 years, Ivy has worked for fortune 500 companies and a prominent university. After extensive training and experiences in both a corporate and higher education setting in the areas of human resources management, career management, employee relations, and training, she chose to work with people to move them forward, preferring to be proactive in her training and coaching rather than reactive.
Ms. Allen coaches via phone or from her base of operations in Columbia, MD. While her coaching ranges from self-care to entrepreneurship, the primary focus of her coaching is love; that is love of self, love for your life, and finding and sustaining the loves of your life; or said another way growing in your power, finding your purpose, and living with passion. Ivy Allen believes that through self empowerment, you can attract and enhance the loves of your life; whether it’s a career, a commitment, or a companion.
Ivy is a graduate of an international coaching school CoachU, Inc., and a certified Life Coach. She enjoys her beautiful daughter, Amira, family and friends, coaching partnerships and alliances, developing and leading seminars, and is always in the pursuit of extraordinary living! A lover of dance (especially salsa), good food, music, adventure, and most especially a lover of dessert, Ivy can be found just about anywhere being who she was born to be; inspiration, empowerment , and love.