Raise your hand if you, as a single person, have been personally victimized by the fall weather.
That’s right. Fall is here. The weather is getting chilly, the boots have made their annual reappearance and everyone just wants to drink cider and watch scary movies. It’s an inherently cuddly time of year.
Every year, at the change of the season, Twitter is afflicted by what I like to call SSPS: Sad Single Person Syndrome.
We all sit around and look at each other’s social media and get sad that we don’t have someone to take cute pictures of us at a pumpkin patch. We’ve all seen the “I just want someone to do cute fall things with” tweets. The bad news: tweeting that probably won’t actually help you get a Significant Other. The good news? Being single doesn’t have to keep you from having the time of your life.
SSPS is completely natural and– while likely incurable– can be remedied. Just follow advice from me, a person totally unqualified to give you any advice at all. Ready? Great!
Here’s how to take advantage of your singleness in (arguably) the most romantic season of the year.
- Embrace the fact that other people (tragically, even your friends) aren’t as single as you.
The first step in being a happy single person is being okay with other people having relationships. Your friends, your best friends, your siblings, your mortal enemies… any number of these people may be madly in love. Be happy for them. You see an IG post that makes you sad that you’re alone? Double-tap that ish and leave it some love. Especially if you are good friends with the couple. Your sadness is valid, but bitterness is toxic.
- Do things alone.
I know this sounds lame; you don’t have to tell me. But when was the last time you did something alone? I don’t mean like walking to class or eating lunch in the TOP. I mean going to a midnight premiere movie or getting up early to watch the sun come up. You’re great company and you’re allowed to enjoy hanging out with yourself. Go to that pumpkin patch. Pick the h*ck out of those pumpkins.
- Treat yourself
One of the hardest things about being single is that no one is surprising you with flowers when you’re having a bad day or taking you to dinner just because they think you’re cute. But that doesn’t change the fact that your bad days can end on high notes or that you’re cute and you (like all sane people) love dinner. So treat yourself. Do it for you, because you deserve it.
- Treat your friends.
You definitely have single friends. Granted, some of them may be immune to SSPS… but some of the are definitely as sad as you. So next time you treat yourself, treat them too. Surprising someone with a gift or even just telling them how fly they look will get you a huge return on a really minimal investment.
- Make some new friends.
You don’t have to ditch your current friends or totally revamp your social circle, but making friends is fun. Talk to the kid sitting next to you in your 8am (okay, maybe not your 8am, but like your 1:50, maybe?). Being single can make you feel like you’re alone in the world. You’re not.
- Put yourself out there.
If you really don’t want to be single, you gotta do something about it. You’re allowed to put yourself out there. You might look stupid. You might get totally rejected. Or you might wind up with something really great. The point isn’t whether or not you convince your crush (we all know you have one) to fall head over heels for you… the point is that you gave it a shot. The world is your oyster.
- Remember that being in a relationship won’t solve all of your problems.
Like most people with SSPS, you probably think that if you could just date someone (the right someone), everything else would just fall into place. Spoiler alert: that’s not how it works. Sadly, you’re still going to have problems even if your significant other is the absolute tops. So take this time on your own to work on yourself. Set some goals and actually try to achieve them. Do what you can to make yourself into the kind of person that you really want to be. Here’s an easy way to start: pick one thing that you’ve been putting off and decide to do it this week, no excuses. (Then treat yourself afterwards.)
- Accept that you’re cool as hell.
Go find a mirror. Look yourself in the face and repeat after me:
You got this.
So maybe that doesn’t do it for you. But copy whatever mantra/quote/picture makes you feel good about yourself and put it someone where you’ll see it every day. Just because you’re single doesn’t mean that you’re not a likeable, valuable, important person. Take a moment to celebrate you.
Now get out there and live your best life.