Taking Time Away from Dating: What I’ve Learned
Today’s topic may seem a bit odd or even scary to some people. I can tell you, if you spend time alone, you can learn a lot about yourself and others. I want to share with you today what I have learned in almost of year of no dating. My year will technically be up after the holidays. I don’t plan to jump into anything even then because I am happy with where I am and the life I am building. How did I get here? How did I arrive at being happy while being “alone” by the world’s standards? Keep reading.
I can tell you I am only “alone” by the world’s standards but I am not alone by God’s or my own. I prefer God’s standards personally which shape my own. Jesus has never left me – He is the friend that sticks closer than a brother. How can I be “alone” if He is with me? I can’t. He has given me not just His peace but he has given me wonderful friends and family who I spend time with every week. He has given me two wonderful animals as home companions as well – their love is unconditional. How can I be “alone?” I can’t. In what the world considers solitude you can find a multitude of peace. You can also learn a lot about yourself – what you want, what you don’t want, and what you won’t tolerate. You can also learn a lot about people by watching others and engaging in the friendships you are given – loving those people where they are and learning from them. In solitude, you can hear the voice of God, ever so close, leading you into a new life – a life that can be surprisingly happy without a significant other. A life that can be fulfilling.
Now, don’t get me wrong. I do not believe all men are bad. Nor do I believe they are all out to get me. I believe most men are good men – I know several good men. Only the few are truly evil. I believe there is a good man out there for me, he has simply not presented himself yet. To be honest, I’m not looking. I am enjoying life, writing, friendships, family and the life I am building. I will not lament over something I do not have, I do not have time to do that. They say when you are not looking, the right person will come. I am to the point in my life with God and myself that I will be happy regardless. I look forward to all God has for me in 2019, with or without a man per say. I have told God this and I am at peace with whatever comes – a great man or no man. I think it is only when we are at that point in our lives when the good partner comes. Frankly, I’m not sure we are ready for the right person before we are at peace with ourselves and with God in this area.
Do you see what I’m getting at today? Having or being in a relationship should not be our end goal or the end-all-be-all. If you don’t love yourself first and love who you are and what God has for you, another person won’t make you happy – they simply just add to the stress and baggage you have not dealt with. And what if they aren’t happy either, or worse, sick at heart? That is a train wreck waiting to happen – trust me.
I want to encourage everyone reading this blog, if you have been hurt or you are grieving from a past relationship, take the time to be alone. Take the time to figure you out. Take the time to figure out what you want and don’t want in a person. Take the time to love you and accept you. Take the time to learn contentedness. Take the time to deal with any lies you are believing about yourself. If you don’t do these things, the other person will not add to you. They will take away from you because they will most likely be trying to get you to meet the same needs for them that you want them to meet for you – and an ugly cycle ensues. No one needs that kind of drama or further heartache.
There is no shame in solitude. There is nothing wrong with not being in a relationship. There is actually a lot of freedom in not being in a relationship that can help you think and process the grief, pain or lies you need to process to move forward. I can tell you I deserve the best and I will accept anything else – no matter how long I am “alone” by the world’s standards. Ladies and gentlemen, you deserve the best too – don’t shortchange yourself by not taking the time alone you need for you. Life is too precious and too short to accept less than the best!
I will leave you with the words of Jesus. We are never alone.
Matthew 28:20 (the words of Jesus)…surely I am with you always, even to the end of the age.
Enjoying and learning in the solitude, Elizabeth