How do you really feel about being single today? Do you love making the most of your freedom, or do you long for someone to cuddle up with on the sofa? Or maybe both? One thing that is certain, today’s dating landscape presents many different opportunities and challenges for single people in Britain. With this in mind, and the festive season in full swing, eharmony teamed up with the relationship support charity, Relate, to find out how British singles really feel about being on their own over holidays and provide tips on how to make the most of it…
1. Be comfortable saying no
Even though a significant proportion of single people would still rather be alone than with the wrong person (41%), pressure to find a partner can sometimes mean we’re more likely to say ‘yes’ to dates we don’t really want. It’s not always easy to say ‘no’ if you’re not feeling up to it, particularly if it’s friends or family trying to persuade you to let them set you up with someone. If you’re taking a break from dating over Christmas, be honest, thank them and say you’re not interested in dating at the moment.
2. Recap your other successes and qualities
Men are far more likely than women to feel under pressure to find a relationship – and that pressure often intensifies around Christmas. Family members who you haven’t seen in a while will ask the dreaded questions like ‘how is your love life going?’, or ‘when will you be settling down?’. It can feel like you’re being judged, but feel confident in the fact that you’ve achieved many things in the year just gone, even if you’ve not met someone special. Take the time to review your year and don’t be afraid to shout about your successes – saying “I’m not seeing anyone right now, I’ve been focusing on my new job”, for example.
3. Avoid social media
At Christmas, love really is all around. But for people who aren’t keen on being single over the holidays, it can all get to be a bit much. Seeing couples on social media can be tough. It always portrays a rose-tinted picture of warm hugs and shared hot chocolate rather than the reality of arguing over burned turkey. In short, spend less time focusing on Facebook or Instagram and spend more looking after yourself and your needs.
4. Appreciate friends and family
It can be easy to get caught up in feeling single and let it distract from the best bit of Christmas – spending time with friends, family and other loved ones. Make the most of having the time and the freedom to share some festive experiences, whether that’s going to the pub to see old mates, staying in and playing board games with family or even doing festive things that you might not have done in a while, like ice skating with your kids.
5. Make the most of being single
We all know that being single can be tough at times, but it’s certainly not all doom and gloom. Many singles embrace their independence, with 61% citing it as the best thing about not being coupled up. This sense of freedom extends into other areas of their lives as well. 33% use their free time to pursue new hobbies, 24% make the most of their nights out, and 10% enjoy the sexual freedom that being single can bring.
6. Take positive action
Finally, if you find yourself feeling down about your love life, it’s worth knowing that relationship counselling isn’t only for couples. If you’re single, Relate can also help you to confidentially explore what didn’t work for you in your past relationships and eharmony can help you meet the right person when you’re ready.