Single in the context of this post, is not only those who cannot get ‘dates’ or ‘toasters’; being single is anyone who is not married. Engaged, dating, ‘testing the waters’, or whatever term you wish to call it, as long as you are not married before God and the law, you are single in my dictionary.

I must say this to the ladies especially; being single is not a curse. It does not mean you are not good enough, that you are not pretty enough or that you are unlovable. The apple at the top of the tree is often the last to be eaten and though it may take some time to get it, it is the most cherished.

Perhaps it seems a little longer than you expected to get married, but this process gives you time to grow, time to mature, time to find and begin purpose. It is better to marry late and stay married, than to marry early and end up abused or divorced.

If you have been living together for years and now have children together but no wedding, shame on you! You are practising ‘kidnapping’, because you have taken someone’s daughter into your house without fulfilling the laws of the land, her family and God. Do not tell me “marriage is just a piece of paper”, “we are living together to see if this relationship can work”, “I’m not ready to get married yet”…and the list goes on and on.

There may be challenges that have stopped you from getting hitched after getting engaged and perhaps you decided to skip the wedding, or perhaps the engagement and you have now been living together for years; here is what I will say to you: life is always full of challenges and there always be reasons not to do the right thing or even to postpone it. But if you set a date and put your mind to it, you can get hitched. If you’re living together and you have no intention of getting married, you stand the higher risk of becoming a single parent with a broken heart, a series of broken relationships and baggage that stops you from enjoying a fulfilling relationship. If you love each other so much and you want to wake up next to each other, get married!

And those engaged couples who decide to live together before they get married, ‘to know each other better’; trust me, even after 5 years of living together, you may not yet fully understand yourselves. So do the right thing and wait till you say, “I do”!

We have heard the saying “It is better to be alone than in bad company”. I believe it is better to be single than to be in a marriage where you feel trapped and dead on the inside. A broken relationship is better than a broken home, so if there are signs of an unhappy marriage already showing in your relationship, please have the courage to walk away. It is better to let go of the’ good’, so the ‘best’ can come.

How do you maximise singlehood? What should you do while waiting for Mr or Mrs Right?

  1. Open yourself to genuine friendships: Every now and then, put your cell phone down, refuse to spend all your free time glued to a device binging on shows, catching up on gossip, stalking people’s platforms, reading or whatever it is that would deny the opportunity to build real and lasting friendships –with real people.

 Rebecca in the bible got a husband because she went to the ‘well’. The well was a social meeting point for shepherds and maidens because it was the major source of water in the area and almost everyone had to come there. It was a good place to exchange greetings and chat while you waited your turn to fetch water and since it was done every day, it was a good spot for the beginning of many ‘promising’ friendships.

Join a gym, a department in church, a club or start a new hobby where you get to meet people. The idea is to make friends and get to know them – without an agenda. When you know people in a relaxed atmosphere, they also get to know you and potential courtship relationships can begin…

I must say this, where you go determines the kind of people you meet. Anyone one you meet in a bar, a night club or a friend’s bachelor party may not have the same values as you and may become ‘regret-worthy’ one night stands and unwanted pregnancies waiting to happen;  so choose your social activities wisely. Think of the values of your future spouse, and what kind of activities would align with it, that should be a good place to start.

  1. Find your ‘amazing’: A successful marriage is the coming together of two ‘whole’- individually complete people, not two ‘halves’. To be good company, you must learn how to successfully stand alone. You cannot be a backbone and a great partner to someone when you have not learnt how to support yourself.

As beautiful as the phrase “You complete me” sounds, we set ourselves up for disaster when our lives are built to revolve around one person, real or imaginary who makes every problem fade into the sunset of their love. Yes, you may feel better around someone and you may get along very well like two peas in a pod, ‘5’ and ‘6’…. and all the ‘perfect pair’ synonyms, but you need to discover yourself, your likes, your purpose, your passion and what you want out of life.

Focus on YOU, focus on building your career, on building your character and building your dreams. Practice loving, moulding, and completing you, so that when your Mr or Mrs comes along, they will be proud and feel so lucky to be with someone like you.

  1. Be patient: I know this seems cliché or maybe even impossible if you are past a certain age and under pressure to settle down, but the most mistakes in life are made when you are desperate.

 Desperate choices bring pain and regret; make sure you know exactly what you want, what you are getting into and who you are getting into a marital relationship with. Being married is great, only if you take your time to choose someone with good character and has proven themselves that they are ready to fully commit to you, not just because you want them to, but because they are willing to as well.

  1. Keep the ‘mask’ off: Do not pretend to be someone else, disregard your values only to be heartbroken in the end. If anyone cannot love you for you, you are better off without them. Be the best version of yourself, but never try to be someone else to gain acceptance.

Discover the wonder that is you, be committed to growing and trust that who you are is exactly what someone is looking for. If you want to cook, clean, and look like a magazine model 24/7, please be prepared to be that way for the rest of your life. No matter how you defend it, it is a lie and it is betrayal to discover that the person you love is not who you thought they were. Everyone has good points that can make a person of interest fall in love with them without having to pretend, so simply put your best foot forward.