If you’ve been without a partner for a long time now, living the single life (you know, sleeping in the middle of the bed, falling asleep with the TV on, taking up all the space on the counter of the bathroom), then I’m here to tell you, “Don’t despair!” (Just in case you are, even a little!)
These single years can be an extraordinary time of growth, where you can come home to the center of yourself, connect more deeply with your own feelings, needs and desires, discover your own authentic voice, and reflect upon the impact your beliefs and assumptions have had on your past relationships. And do this in a way that supports you to evolve your consciousness to a healthier place from which to create your next relationship. In short, you actually have the time and the space right now to identify and release your internal barriers to loving partnership, and to prepare yourself to co-create a relationship that reflects the highest possibility you hold of deeply nourishing, inspired, happy, healthy love!
The kinds of shifts that are possible in these precious times of solitude will, however, require much of you. In order to dramatically transform your relationship patterns, you must be willing to see clearly how you yourself co-created the old ones, as well as take responsibility to begin showing up in completely new ways.
What do these ways look like? Like a mature adult, and not simply a child in a grown-up body who is holding others hostage to your old wounds from childhood. Or as a person who is willing to let go of your solo dance in service to becoming ready to be a part of a couple. And being willing to take full responsibility for those things within yourself that you’ve been blaming others for.
Becoming ready for authentic, happy, healthy love isn’t always easy. But it is always well worth the effort on the other side. While setting an intention to find love is a good thing, it is really just the beginning of the journey.
When you have the courage to say yes to the possibility of love, it will often mean facing things about yourself you’ve not been willing to really look at until now. Such as the part of you that may not actually want to be in a committed relationship. Or maybe the part of you that doesn’t actually want to risk being sexual again. Or the part of you that doesn’t want anyone else’s wants and needs to interfere with getting your own tended to.
Using your single time as a time to prepare for love, often means a radical departure from your old, automatic, and probably pretty comfortable ways of doing things! I’m talking about those patterns and habits that may identify who you think you are, such as “I am fiercely independent and never ask anyone for help,” or “I’m such a loving person that I always take care of other people before myself.” Everything you think about yourself is suddenly suspect. Is it really your nature to be that independent? Or is it a defense against being disappointed again like you were when you were a child? A creative and compensatory response to no one really ever being there for you in the way you needed when you were young? Is it really loving to self abandon constantly, and to source your value from pleasing other people? Or is it a destructive pattern that keeps you invisible and makes it nearly impossible for you to ever fully commit yourself to someone else because you don’t trust that your authentic self will ever be taken care of?
This time alone grants you the ability to consciously challenge these old ways of seeing yourself, and to begin identifying and practicing new ways of showing up in relationship to yourself and others that are most likely outside of who we’ve known yourself to be. So, I encourage you to use this time wisely. Moving into a place of stillness for a while and getting into a deeper relationship with yourself can be the most vital and wonderful preparation for receiving a beloved into your life. If more people took advantage of this time alone, there would be a lot more healthy and happy unions we could point to as role models for what we ourselves are committed to creating.
It all comes down to really doing the work to transform yourself from the inside out while you are still single. To recreate yourself anew, and to focus on becoming the best potential partner you have the capacity to be, so that when you do call in your wonderful, made-for-you soulmate, you’ll actually be worthy of their devotion and their love.
Katherine Woodward Thomas, MA, MFT is the national bestselling author of Calling in “The One.” She is a licensed psychotherapist and creator of the Calling in “The One” 7-week Interactive Online Course, which has supported many thousands of people around the globe in finding their soulmate. She is a creative and inspired transformative educator with over 20 years experience designing and facilitating leading-edge seminars that support the emergence of life-altering shifts in consciousness both in individuals and in groups.