How to be Happily Single (Even If You Long for a Partner)

confident single woman

“Do you have a boyfriend yet?”
“Are you getting married soon?”
“You are not getting any younger!”

As you read the above, some of you are shaking your heads, recalling the nosy relatives or cheeky friends asking these every Chinese New Year or gathering. Your response could be positive, feeling content to be single or optimistic that your future spouse will show up in your life soon, or your response could be negative, feeling discouraged that you have been on one-too-many blind dates and still not meeting the right person.

When the nagging starts

Society (and our family) tells us that once we reach a certain age, it’s time to find a partner to spend the rest of our lives with.

Once we’re past that age, the nagging starts, and the obsession begins with attempts to introduce potential partners at every opportunity. This is not a bad thing, as we know our families just want the best for us. However, this places a lot of pressure on singles to become doubles, even though they may not be ready or have not met the right one.

Friends may start commenting that the single person is being too picky or has overly high standards. Making these comments is truly not helpful to the single person as it gives them the wrong expectation of what a life-long committed relationship should be based on.

Happiness comes from within

While marriage and children are undoubtedly wonderful goals, they aren’t always necessary for happiness. In fact, many people who choose to remain single are happier than those who tie the knot.

Stories about broken relationships and marriages ending are all too familiar. Every relationship has its ups and downs, as anyone married knows.

Therefore, it is fine to be picky and set the bar high for your future partner. Be patient when looking for the right person, and do not make a hasty decision.

The gift of singleness

Do not be paralyzed by singleness. I know of singles who cannot bear to have a meal alone and would not dream of sitting in a cinema by themselves. I also know of singles who are happy to watch their favorite movies alone or travel solo to their dream destinations.

Many singles live fulfilled and meaningful lives by building strong friendships with those around them, having close-knit relationships with their families, engaging in activities that benefit their community, and many more.

Jesus remained single, as did Paul, Jeremiah, and many others who served God. Serving God leads to everlasting joy and happiness. As the Bible says in Psalms 16:11, “You make known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.”

By developing this strong sense of meaning in your life, you will be confident and secure in your identity as an individual, and this is important for every person—whether single or married.

Only when you can be happy as a single person can you be happy as a married person. We should not go into our relationships or marriages expecting to change our happiness level magically. We bring into our relationships who we are.

God is not Santa Claus

On a personal note, I used to pray for God to bring my future spouse into my life. The Bible tells us that God knows our thoughts and prayers even without us saying them out loud. God asks us to pray because He wants us to converse and connect with Him and trust in Him. So I prayed diligently while knowing that God is not Santa Claus and that not all prayers are according to His plan for us.

After a few years, I heard a sermon that changed my perspective on my prayer.

All the while, I had prayed for God to bring someone to me. But was I the person that someone wanted to be in a relationship with? Was I open to accepting another person’s point of view in the most private parts of my life? Was I ready to adjust to how I spent my time to accommodate someone else? Was I mature enough to accept someone else’s family as my own?

From that point on, I prayed for God to prepare me to be ready for my future spouse, and not the other way around.

A final word to those who are single

Therefore, as a single person, be comfortable in your singlehood and build good friendships. If it is God’s will for you to remain single, you will be confident in your identity as a person, and you will already have a strong support system around you.

If you do meet your future spouse and get married, you will enter the relationship as an equal partner and a complete person, contributing to the relationship instead of only receiving from it. By approaching our relationships with the right mindset and a high level of self-awareness, we will be ready for whatever comes.

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