How Being Single Can Make You Healthier
Focus on yourself for a change
The statistics we hear most often say that being in a relationship makes you healthier than being single. But the fact is, this is not always the case. Being single is always better for your health than being in a bad relationship.
The stress of trying to make a bad relationship work can increase your blood pressure, your heart rate, and your unhappiness at this situation can lead to depression. So, if you're in a bad relationship, get out now, and make yourself healthier and stronger.
It's all about you
When you're single, you can make choices based solely on yourself.
"Relationships take a significant amount of give and take, of compromise, of at times putting our partners needs before our own. When single we can make decisions completely for ourself; to stay out late with friends, to take a vacation with an undetermined return date, to work long hours on a hobby or project, to take a risky job, etc.," said Gabrielle Anna, author and psychologist.
"When we develop, grow and respect ourselves, it trickles outward in our life in a positive way. When single we can focus on ourself and it's not selfish it's productive. We know what makes us happy, we know how to love and soothe ourself, we can become stronger by our independence, we learn how to support ourselves," she said.
And you can develop loving relationships even if you're not dating someone. When you are partnered up with someone, they usually take priority whether intended or not.
"When single, we develop our relationship to ourself, we have more time for our friendships, we have time for family and we're building a support system around us. We have a healthy foundation of people we love who love us and even if we are alone we don't have to feel lonely," she said.
The healthier choice
Lisa Bahar, a psychologist specializing in family and relationships, said that being single can sometimes be the healthier choice.
"These times can be defined perhaps as a challenging break up, perhaps concerns related to love addiction or sex addiction, an individual that may be dealing with a substance abuse problem or perhaps having been in a relationship and never or at least having had minimal times being without a relationship. All of these may be times that being single is a healthier choice versus committing time and energy to a relationship," Bahar said.
"The reason it may be healthier is due to the focus on self care, self exploration and willingness to learn how to create a healthy relationship with self and not getting lost in a relationship or losing oneself. Therapy and other support systems can create insight and awareness of values and ideals that are healthy," she said.
The freedom of freedom
The absolute freedom to do whatever you want without nagging is what Jim Dailakis, an actor/writer/comedian/voiceover artist loves best about being single.
"But, that's the cynical part of me. The emotional part of me believes one is healthier being single because you have one less person to worry about," Dailakis said.
"I remember having once read from an unknown author that the more people you love, the greater your chances are of getting hurt and the more vulnerable you are to the insecurity and pain of losing them. Love makes us strong yet leaves us defenseless," he pointed out.
The little things are what can stress you out the most, he said.
"Traveling alone is so much more stress-free than when I'm with someone. It's also a lot faster. I can't remember the last time I actually checked luggage," he said.
As for home life, "you can cook the same thing over and over every day and not have to worry about any complaints. More time to shop for healthy items. More time to work out. Sleeping in and staying up late without having to worry about making noises or being accused of being lazy is also good," he said.
He admitted, "I'm sure there are pluses and minuses for both being single and being with someone but I think that being single is probably the most stress-free of the two."