Yesterday, I wrapped up a 7-day series on advice for singles. This was my way of getting back into the habit of writing, but also to help single women who rarely (if ever) receive advice that’s both real and relevant to their stage of life.
To recap, the series encouraged women to invest in themselves; to use discernment in relationships; to build a life they’d love at any stage; to live romantically; to walk in their God-given purpose; to stay connected to friends; and to have more fun.
I’d say it was a pretty well-rounded series, but there’s at least one more thing worth mentioning that I’ll cover in this bonus post. If you’re interested, keep scrolling.
“Triggers are external events or circumstances that may produce very uncomfortable emotional or psychiatric symptoms, such as anxiety, panic, discouragement, despair, or negative self-talk...”
If you regularly battle with loneliness or despair because of your singleness, then learn to identify your triggers. Those could look like any number of things; and speaking from personal experience, the more honest you are about them, the better off you’ll be. Need examples? Allow me to help.
Your personal triggers could include one or a combination of the following:
- Romantic movies, tv shows, and/or novels
- Unbalanced friend groups (e.g., more time spent with married friends vs. single friends)
- Excessive scrolling on social media and falling into the comparison trap
- Anything that stirs up the idolatry of romantic relationships/marriage (yes, that includes Christian podcasts and books on relationships)
- Idle time, boredom
- Checking in with exes, both directly and indirectly
- Unestablished boundaries with friends who are discontent in their own singleness and who share that with you often
- Too much time alone, isolation
- Unforgiveness, for self and others
This is not an exhaustive list, but it should give you an idea of things to consider as you discover what makes your singleness seemingly unbearable. I felt that way in the more stressful seasons of my 20s, but once I took the time to get to know me and to prioritize my mental health, it became a lot easier to reject the things that didn’t serve me well. Pro tip: as you get into the habit of monitoring your moods and what drives them, your triggers become crystal clear.
After you identify your triggers, write them down and make a conscious effort to avoid them as much as possible or altogether. Honestly, you have to establish limits that work for you. If you require some degree of accountability in these areas, then talk to a trusted friends or mentor who can help you along the way.
I should also mention that not everything on the previous list is inherently bad. They just might not be good for you as you navigate the single life. Everyone is different.
Can you relate to any of this? Let’s chat in the comments.