Call it the new twist on “conscious uncoupling” as women come into their true power and fall head over heels in love with me, myself and I.
Relationships are kinda messy in this new cooped up world. There are those relishing being loved up (and locked up) with their new partners, while others are in isolation pining for their beloveds. And don’t even get us started on those in long-term relationships trying to survive the ordeal of being stuck home 24/7 with their spouse (seems like you’re either working on #coronababies or a #covidivorce).
Even before the days of isolation, the case for being happily self-partnered was becoming more and more clear — as we went about smashing through the glass ceiling, fighting for equal rights (and pay), and embracing self-love in all its glorious forms.
Perhaps actress and activist Emma Watson summed it up best in a recent interview with British Vogue: “I never believed the whole ‘I’m happy single’ spiel. I was like, ‘This is totally spiel.’ It took me a long time, but I’m very happy [being single]. I call it being self-partnered.”
Here are 6 steps to fall in love with yourself (no Hermoine magic wand required):
Say so-long to societal expectations
Brown’s self-partnered epiphany came when she realized how “stressed and anxious” she was thanks to all the “subliminal messaging” out there about women in their 30s without a partner and a baby. So she flipped the switch to embrace what half of the US population already knows: holding off on marriage is the norm. Invest your time getting to know yourself intimately first (not just in that way) before anyone else. As Psychology Today points out, “to be self-partnered, you first need to question and then define your own expectations, values, and goals. Where did you learn what your life should be like? How do those expectations make you feel now? What needs to be updated?” Once you put others’ opinions aside to reveal your truth, you can live your best, most authentic life.
Excavate your emotions
One of the biggest stereotypes — and stigmas — of being single is the emotional trifecta of loneliness, shame, and sadness. While it’s natural to want to escape these uncomfortable feelings, if you lean into the discomfort, you may be surprised at what you find that lies beneath. As Sophie Tanner, “sologamy” proponent and author of the book, Reader, I Married Me!, points out, “Loneliness is an emotional response to feeling unloved and unseen, which can happen in or out of a relationship. It’s about feeling misunderstood or lacking connection.” By digging up what’s beneath challenging emotions (solo or with the help of a pro), you get the empowering opportunity to unearth deeper self-understanding and pave the way for profound transformation.
Step up your self-care
If you’re going to be self-partnered, step up your self-care game. There are actually six key elements of self-care that equally deserve your attention. Listen carefully to your mind, body, and spirit, and focus on taking care of each aspect as much as you’d tend to the needs of anyone else you love. This means eat healthy, get plenty of sleep, move your body, treat your needs with compassion, organize your home to support your well-being, make and reinforce nourishing connections, and seek help when you need it. Don’t put off taking care of your needs (we have a Period Performance Kit to give you a monthly boost that includes divine pampering products like our HYDRATE hydrogel face mask and REJUVENATE eye mask with your name on it!) Show the one who deserves your love most (ahem, you) that you truly care.
Pick your pleasure
While this might seem like a saucy come on to get you to delve into the delights of masturbation (we’ll get to that in a minute), it’s important to discover and embrace what genuinely brings you joy. Is it time to finally start writing your novel, take a pottery class, train for a marathon, learn a new language, home your culinary skills, volunteer for a pet cause? Whatever it is, make it a priority to do you. And speaking of you doing you, we absolutely believe in the joys and restorative power of masturbation. It’s the ultimate relaxation tool, helping you to lower stress and sleep better, thanks to a burst of the happy hormone, dopamine, and calm-inducing oxytocin to help you get off… to sleep. Fun fact: research shows female masturbation can help prevent cervical infections and relieve UTIs. All the more reason to love yourself, and often.
Tighten the ties that bind
Being self-partnered doesn’t mean you only soar when flying solo. In fact, if ever there was a time to cultivate community, it’s now. With more time to focus on what matters most to you, there’s also more space to foster more meaningful relationships with friends, family, mentors/mentees, and all the important people in your life. If you’re feeling lacking in that department, consider where you turn when you need support, caring, and intimacy most. Acknowledge the answers and prioritize finding your tribe. Now is not the time to be shy; especially in a crisis like the COVID-19 pandemic, you deserve to be well supported — and have some fun, too. Check out Meetup to find others with similar interests who are now organizing virtual events (and eventually, when the crisis has passed, in person). And if the support you need is more serious than social, search your local community resources from sources like chambers of commerce, neighborhood council, or mental health nonprofits. Make sure your safety net is solid.
Open up to new possibilities
The most limiting idea of the mating mythology is that someone else completes you. The truth is when you have a positive relationship with yourself, you’ve got the keys to the kingdom of self-sufficiency, self-acceptance, and self-satisfaction. From this perspective, nothing is holding you back from a happy, healthy lifestyle. Finally, a relationship status update that truly upgrades your health and well-being. Now that really puts the sing in (being) single.
On that note, we’ll leave you with one of our favorite quotes: “Love yourself first, as that’s who you are going to be spending the rest of your life with.”