s Dr. Ellen Kenner The Rational Basis of Happiness, Not Enjoying Being Single

Not Enjoying Being Single

An unusual tip that you WILL benefit from

Once every few years, my husband looks at me and says "I'm so glad I'm not single." (I assume that he feels that sentiment more often than that.) What if you are single and longing to have a loving partner, what steps can you take to achieve that state of bliss?

You've tried them all. You've dressed to impress. You've joined your local health club. You've met women or men from ads in the local papers.  You've plunked down big bucks with a dating service.  You've learned lots of icebreakers  to get conversations rolling…and you've discovered that there's "no one out there for you".

But here's another angle to dating.  Pamper yourself or more accurately, give yourself a lot of good loving attention.  Imagine going to a psychological spa. You get to take a close-up look at yourself from a self-valuing point of view, not from the critical parent point of view nor from a "what-you-see-is-what-you-get" passive point   of view. Take note of what you like about yourself.  Take note of what you want to improve. In a newspaper article by Hopson, Hopson and Taylor titled Strategies for the Single Who is Looking, the authors suggest the following: ``Stop to take a personal inventory. Think of yourself as a magnet. We attract people into our lives who have many of our own qualities. Imagine the male or female version of yourself. Do you like what you see? If not, which qualities do you need to work on?"

It throws things into a different light when you view yourself from the perspective of an imagined partner who is just like you.

  • If you're a couch potato…imagine your mate as a couch potato. Would you like being married to this person? If not, work on setting some personal goals for yourself. Wake yourself up from your passivity and explore activities that interest you, new career opportunities, hobbies that would keep your couch looking new for years.
  • If you plan your time poorly and you are always racing against the clock …imagine that your mate is exactly the same way.  Would you enjoy being married to him or her? If not, give yourself the pleasure of learning time management skills.
  • If you have not paid your bills in two months and your checkbook hasn't been balanced in years, would you enjoy being married to a partner who shares these "qualities"? If not, develop more self-respecting  habits in money management.
  • If you're a "yeller" and a "hollerer"… imagine you are married to a partner who yells and hollers back. Would you love this trait in your partner? If not, invest in some tapes, books or courses on good communication.
  • If you have not exercised in years and have layers of flab to prove it, would you love to hold a partner in your arms who is in similar physical misshape. If not, give yourself the benefit of some invigorating exercise – your choice of course.
  • If you discover that you already have a lot of good qualities and skills, then no improvement is needed in these areas. If you were married to someone who shared these qualities…well that's exactly what you're after.

Now let's say you take inventory of yourself and you get the attention and skills to improve your life at this psychological spa.  After spending a few months there, you emerge as ``the you" you've  always wished you were. You have a career path that you love. You have learned some time management and financial management skills. You are more proficient at communicating openly, honestly, directly and tactfully. You have an inner feeling of physical stamina and healthiness. You have improved your own self-esteem.

Although you still have to go through the trials and tribulations of meeting many potential partners, it's easier.  When you set off to look for a lifelong partner, you will be more likely to attract someone who values himself as you value yourself.  And that will help make any relationship with this person a  mutual pleasure. You'll be glad you're no longer single, rather than wishing you were single once more and wondering why you ever trapped yourself into a fool relationship with some financially irresponsible, hollering blob of a couch potato.