However, no-one is going to applaud you for being single, nor celebrate your wins in a way they do for others.

Yep, you heard me right. All in all, it’s fair to say that society can be extremely fixated on conventional accomplishments, specific expectations and mainstream milestones. Ones often intertwined with some aspect of partnership.

Milestones like weddings, moving in with a partner, getting engaged, starting a family, or beginning a new relationship. All of this means that other accomplishments, ones no less deserving of celebration, frequently fall under the radar when single. Even if they hold incredible deep personal meaning.

Whilst the things you are doing whilst single, do not deserve any less celebration. The truth is, they will be celebrated less.

No-one is going to applaud you for being single, or what you do with that singleness

Because being single is part of a long list of accomplishments that tend to go unnoticed. Single is conveyed as a thing to avoid and resolve, not something that might be the very status that projects you into a thriving situation.

I’m not saying this is okay. It’s simply a truth.

Of course we should be celebrating a more diverse set of milestones that shape our lives, as these accomplishments deserve recognition and support too

Whether they are big, or small steps towards a better place for ourselves. We should try not to let societies standardized milestones over-ride how important every personal milestone is. Every one of us has a different path we are walking, a journey we are on, and so for each of us, our milestones and moments of celebration are very different. Milestones shouldn’t, and in fact can’t, really be standardized. So it’s funny how we’ve ended up here. Yet here we are. With partnership at the top of the crop, and being single, and all the accomplishments made whilst being single, renegaded to ‘sub-par’ unless partner is in tow.

Obviously I’d love this to change, but the likelihood of that being anytime soon is possibly a tad ambitious. So in the meantime?…

You have to pat yourself on the back and celebrate single in your own way

You aren’t going to receive cards on your yearly anniversary of single. Your milestones are going to come with a little less celebration than your friend having a baby, or your sibling who just moved in with their partner. When you buy your own home alone. Go on holiday by yourself for the first time. Turn down a toxic relationship (or any relationship) in favour of yourself. You have to applaud yourself in those moments.

When you quit a job that’s become toxic for your mental health. Or make new friends who are supporting and uplifting. Let go of a relationship that isn’t a happy one anymore. Get divorced from somebody that is bad for your emotional wellbeing. Switch careers to pursue a passion or something deeply cared about. Start over in a new city or country. Overcome a challenging situation, or pursue a state of improved mental health and wellbeing. These things shouldn’t fly under the radar. They are big, celebration worthy things. Even if other people don’t appreciate how much they mean for you.

I’ve learned that this is a major part of what single is about. Celebrating yourself. Saying well done to you

And getting to a place of not caring one damn bit about whether anyone else is paying attention. Because it’s simply you versus you. You right now, versus who you were a year ago. You right now, versus who you want to become in a years’ time. You’re not in a race against anyone else. Their accomplishments are great. Yours are just as meaningful, even if you’re the only one whooping from the side-lines. You are over here trying to be better. And that’s fucking awesome.

Single isn’t going to suddenly transform into an acceptable way of life. Not yet, anyhow

That shit takes time. Because it’s not only us singles who are rewiring our mindsets on what it means to be single, but society as a whole needs the shake up too. Of course it’s hard to sell yourself the single dream when half the population are partnered and believe they’re happier than any singleton could be, and many of us singles still believe that to be the truth. That just means it’s going to take time. Rome wasn’t built in a day.

In the meantime be your biggest champion. Become an effing great cheerleader. It is absolutely an act of self-care to celebrate yourself, and revel in all your singleness. Because the things you are doing whilst single, do not deserve any less celebration.

By Amy Roullier
By Amy Roullier

Amy is the Founder and Editor of The Authentic Optimist. She talks all things life. From the highs to the lows, to all those messy bits in-between. She is a writer, rambler, lover of carbs (her true soulmate) and she is especially passionate about dispelling myths about women in their 30s. Amy lives in Lincolnshire with her two greyhounds.

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