Single? Go Ahead—Give Thanks

Bemoaning your uncoupled status for the upcoming holidays? You won't after you peruse this list of 10 single-life perks you should be so very grateful for.

By Amy Spencer

1. You have every excuse to look amazing
Go ahead and splurge on that fancy new necktie, that impractical red cocktail dress, or that haircut/highlight job at the chichi salon. Not only is it fun to get gussied up when you’re single, but you can rationalize the cost another way: Like celebrities lined up on the red carpet to sell their premieres, it’s your job to look your best when you’re looking for love.

When you’re single, the world seems bigger because you tend to see more of it: more gallery openings, more restaurants, more cocktail hours at cool clubs.
2. You have plenty of opportunities to experience new things
When you’re single, the world seems bigger because you tend to see more of it: more restaurants, more films, more gallery openings, more cocktail hours at cool clubs. And sure, cozied-up-at-home couples could hit the town if they wanted to and may do so on occasion, but most likely they’d end up in a corner talking to…each other. You, on the other hand, will have immersed yourself in a conversation about postmodern painting with some cute grad student you’ve just met, or hit the dance floor with some sexy stranger on Brazilian night. Now, we ask you, who’s having more fun?

3. You only need to keep tabs on one schedule: yours
Want to go to a football game next weekend? Yep. How about a play the following Thursday? Sure thing. Do you have to check with anyone about that first? Nope. When you’re single, your schedule is yours and yours alone! Your needs are primary right now, so make the most of your freedom.

4. Plus you can invite whomever you like!
Sure, couples can take comfort in knowing they always have a date for a wedding, bar mitzvah, or other social event. But there’s a lot to be said for being able to pick from a pool of friends and dates depending on the function: No dragging boyfriends or girlfriends to work events they don’t want to go to, and no stress about your current squeeze flipping when you invite your U2-fan friend to the concert instead. You have all the partners-in-crime to pick from, guilt-free!

5. You can indulge in the sound of silence
You know those spans of time when things are pin-drop quiet and you’re not sure what to do with yourself? Well, sit down, breathe in and appreciate them now. Read a book, take a nap, watch TV, whatever you want. Because when you’re coupled up, those peaceful moments pretty much disappear and give way to “Well, what should we do today?” “C’mon, it’s your turn to order the takeout,” “I did not finish the roll of toilet paper!” and other relationship-related white noise.

You don’t have to wonder, “Will my date still love me after she’s seen me do ‘Islands in the Stream’ on karaoke night?”
6. You don’t have to censor yourself
When you’re single, you can get as goofy, messy, slobbered, nutty, or embarrassing as you want without thinking about the relationship consequence. Go on, spend the weekend on the couch ordering Domino’s pizza and watching action movies on TBS. Or go out with your pals for too many tequila shots. You don’t have to worry about someone complaining about your mess and worrying about your state of mind. And you don’t have to wonder “Uh-oh, will my date still love me after she’s seen me do ‘Islands in the Stream’ on karaoke night?”

7. You’re more likely to be spontaneous
We like to think that when we’re in a couple, we’ll be the ones who fly off to Vegas for the weekend, just to keep things interesting. But the truth is, the you-only-live-once mentality tends to work better on one person at a time since there’s, well, just one schedule to wrangle. So take life by the horns, grab whoever’s game for an adventure, and go!

8. Your life is full of passion—and possibility
Let’s be honest: The cliché about sex getting dull after awhile with the same person is a cliché because it’s true and people mention it all the time. You, on the other hand, can spend your whole night flirting like mad. You can still get weak in the knees when you kiss your date. You can have lusty make-out sessions in the back of the bar with someone you just met. And you can have a marathon night of sex full of surprises. That kind of excitement and spontaneity just doesn’t happen for most been-together-awhile couples.

9. You have the best, worst, and wildest dating stories
You know that unabashedly curious look couples get when they ask about your love life? That’s because your stories are full of vicarious thrills—yes, the ups and the downs. So go ahead and share exactly how horrified you were when your date spit her gum into your wine at the table. Or how much fun it was kissing your latest date under the stars on a snowy night. Realize what a crazy, exciting, and adventurous time you’re having—and revel in it.

10. You can spend quality time with your family and friends
During the holidays, all your coupled friends will be marking up calendars with “My Mom” and “Your Dad” days blocked out, and spending a lot of their other time stressing about traveling between the two. But you? You get to spend your time during the holidays with the family and friends you choose. Whether it’s a 20-person Thanksgiving dinner or a quiet day at home with your best bud and a bag of Fritos, it’s all up to you who gets the benefit of hangin’ with your happy self—and that’s what the holidays are all about, right?

Amy Spencer writes about relationships for Glamour, Maxim, Real Simple and other publications. And compiling this list has made her more grateful than ever for the spontaneous, friend-filled, funny, flirtatious single life she gets to live.
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