The Amazing Upsides To Being Single In Your 30s

It's no secret that there's a big-ol' stigma around being single in your 30s. Your mom is practically on her knees begging to set you up with someone, while your couple friends gaze at you with that dreaded look of pity whenever you mention your relationship status. (You know the exact look we're referring to.) But the truth is that being single in this pivotal time in your life can be a wonderful experience. In fact, multiple studies prove that single women end up living healthier lives than those in romantic relationships. Yep, you've read that right. A study completed by the University of Arizona notes that women who are unmarried have a lower BMI and less high blood pressure than their married counterparts. Not bad, eh?


Along with the health benefits that come from being single in your 30s is the social gain you experience that your coupled-up friends might, unfortunately, miss out on. A study by Oxford University suggests that once people enter romantic relationships, they risk losing two close friends (via the BBC). Because those who are coupled up spend a lot of their time with their significant other, they tend to neglect the other more platonic relationships in their life. Fortunately, as a single lady, your life can be more social than ever before.   

Ultimately, there are endless reasons why being single in your 30s might be the best thing to ever happen to you. Here are many of them.

Being single in your 30s is way better than being single in your 20s

Dating can be hard enough, but dating in our 20s can be its own special form of hell. Why? Because when we're young, we don't fully have a grasp of what it is we value most in our romantic relationships. What is it that we truly want out of a partner? Is it passion? Stability? Something in-between? Because we don't have a full understanding yet of what it is that we want in our 20s, we're willing to let certain things fly that our 30-something selves would never dare tolerate.


We may have accepted "Netflix and Chill" as an acceptable date night when we were 22 (where we show up in our best dresses, and he shows up in a rumpled stained T-shirt,) but would our 30-year-old self be as lenient? Fat chance. Because we are more established in our 30s, we are far more likely to date other people who are established as well (via The Washington Post). This means fancier outings with our suitors that include white table cloths and champagne, rather than bar stools and Budweiser.

Furthermore, the older the suitor, the more likely they are to value traits like personality and character over superficial factors such as physical appearance (via Psychology Today). That's why, in our 30s, we have a better chance of forming a more authentic love story that goes far beyond superficiality. And who wouldn't want that?


We have a better sense of self in our 30s

When we're in our 30s, we know who we are far more than we did during our younger years. And according to Psychology Today, one of the best ways to obtain a healthy relationship is to stay true to oneself. As cheesy and Disney-esque as that sounds, maintaining a strong sense of independence within your love life is one of the most essential ingredients towards maintaining the passion and making it work in the long hall. 


After all, the most important thing you can bring to a romance is independence. Being single while in your 30s is the best way to create that healthy supply of self-sufficiency. So, when the time comes and you meet that special someone (assuming that's what you want), you'll be much less likely to form an unhealthy co-dependent bond than you would at 25. As Psychology Today reports, one of the best ways to destroy a relationship is co-dependency. And how can you be co-dependent when you already have such a strong sense of self?

Less likely to tolerate bad behavior with potential partners

Let's be honest. When we were younger, most of us let way too much slide with our lovers. It can be a cringe-worthy experience reflecting back on what we were willing to tolerate before we had the confidence that naturally comes in our 30s. (Per Body + Soul, we often have the best self-esteem during this pivotal decade.) Also, because we had less experience in the dating field during our teen years and 20s, we didn't really know what was considered acceptable behavior and what wasn't. This naivety made us more susceptible to dating people who'd be waving bright red flags right in our faces without us even noticing (via Psychology Today). 


Now that we're older and wiser, we don't have time for that. With more wisdom and knowledge, we are able to smell an F-boy from a mile away. No more dating men who consider buying your extra dipping sauce at Popeyes the truest form of chivalry. No more last-minute booty calls that brighten up your phone minutes after you've wiped off all your makeup for the day. No more disrespect. You know your worth in your 30s, and by now, you simply refuse to tolerate the scrub-like behavior. (Alexa, blast the "TLC" song.)

All the freedom in the world

You know that trip to Paris that you've always wanted to go on? Or what about that month-long wellness retreat across the country that's been calling your name? Well when you're single, you're able to drop everything to do what you want, when you want. (Okay, so maybe we're exaggerating a bit here because factors like money and work are still things to consider, but you get the gist.) 


Even so, when you're single, you have nothing and no one to hold you back. No need to plan things out in advance to make sure it suits your partner's schedule. No need to worry about making them jealous when your ex starts texting you out of the blue again. No need to turn down the cute stranger who asks for your number. When you're single, you have the freedom to talk and connect with anyone you want without the risk of making your partner uncomfortable. And if you're currently single, especially by choice, there's a good chance that you prioritize your freedom. 

According to Psychology Today, people who value their freedom and individualism above being in a relationship are generally happier. Alternatively, if you're not single by choice, there's no need to worry. While having all the freedom in the world can be terrifying at first, it can also be the most liberating thing to ever happen to you. You'll see.


You get to style your living space however you want

One of the biggest hurdles of being in a relationship is sharing your space with someone else. It can be a genuine struggle trying to navigate how you want to design your living space as a couple. This is because there's a good chance you and your partner don't have the same sense of style. Chances are that you're going to have to make a bunch of sacrifices when it comes to home decor so that it suits both you and your significant other. 


But when you're single, the whole world is your oyster. You want sparkly pink wallpaper for your bedroom? What about that throw pillow from Etsy with Timothée Chalamet's face on it? No one's stopping you. Now is your chance to design your living space in the way that best suits your personality. In fact, according to Psychology Today, your living space has a direct correlation with your identity. "We deploy our things to tell the world who we are," psychologist Sam Gosling reveals. "Whether the message is sent via a priceless oil painting or a bumper sticker, it's important to us that others receive it." Some resources, including a guide from My Domain, can even help you design your space as a single gal.


More focus on friendships

We know that it's scientifically proven that people lose at least two friends when they enter a romantic relationship (via the BBC.) The Oxford University study suggests that we often put our old friends and even our family on the back burner for the sake of our romantic relationships. Professor Dunbar, who founded the study, further explains, "What I suspect happens is that your attention is so wholly focussed on your romantic partner that you just don't get to see the other folks you have a lot to do with, and therefore some of those relationships just start to deteriorate and drop down into the layer below." Psychology Today seems to agree, claiming that friendships tend to be stronger when one is single compared to being in a relationship. 


It makes sense that this is often the case. When we enter romantic relationships, we tend to rely a bit too heavily on our partners to fulfill our needs. In unhealthy relationships, we end up relying on our partners for emotional support, entertainment, overall life satisfaction, and even financial aid. But when we expect too much from anyone, especially a boyfriend or a girlfriend, we risk suffocating our partner. Charisma on Command explains, "When we lean, as human beings, on anything more than it can stand, we're going to wind up on the floor." When single, you need not worry about whether you're demanding too much (or too little) from your partner.

No need to compromise over which Netflix show to binge next

In the movie "Gone Girl," Amy Dunn explains how she had to sit through Adam Sandler movies with her ex-husband just to keep him satisfied (via YouTube). And while there are admittedly some amazing Sandler movies out there — "The Wedding Singer," anyone? — we get the idea that Dunn is going for. Oftentimes, it can feel like a genuine sacrifice of our time when we feel obligated to sit through our partner's favorite movies or TV shows, even if they don't appeal to us. Think about it. Would you really rather be spending your evening watching one of the many "Fast and Furious" movies with your S.O. as opposed to going out with the gal pals? Furthermore, you can watch all of your favorite campy girly soaps without your partner secretly hardcore judging you for it. Want to binge-watch a reality show about housewives for the billionth time? No one is gonna stop you from living your best life.


As Vulture reveals, finding a show to compromise on with your partner is a genuine challenge. Furthermore, Fatherly notes that TV is genuinely ruining relationships. This is most evident when it comes to shows involving romance because, for instance, watching Chandler and Monica's love story on "Friends" can alter our own expectations of what to expect within our relationships. Don't have to worry about that sort of thing when you're single, now do you?

Or what to have for dinner each night

It can be a genuine challenge trying to figure out what to have for dinner each night with your significant other. Not only can it be time-consuming (and not to mention annoying) trying to come up with a meal plan that both you and your partner can get behind but your eating habits while in a relationship can actually be worse for your health.


In fact, a study from Social Science and Medicine reports that single people have a lower BMI than their married counterparts. This could have something to do with our portion size, which tends to get bigger when coupled. For example, if you're a petite woman and you're developing the same eating habits as your taller boyfriend, there's a chance you're gonna wind up putting on more weight than you're used to. Furthermore, there are several perks to eating by yourself as opposed to eating in the company of others. According to a study in PLOS ONE, people who eat by themselves tend to be healthier since they stop eating when they're feeling full. When eating with others, it's a lot easier to "mirror" the amount they eat. "Both eating companions' food intake becomes synchronized through processes of behavioral mimicry," the study reports.


You'll likely have a classier dating experience

Say goodbye to those lame excuses for "dates" at Buffalo Wild Wings, and say hello to classy gourmet dinners at five-star restaurants. As Tax Income reports, our income increases the older we get. Because of this, we're more likely to have classier dating experiences at more high-end venues. Plus, with age, our communication skills tend to be a lot better than they were in our 20s. So, If you want a date so romantic that it seems like it came straight out of a Taylor Swift song, all you have to do is ask for it. 


If your suitor is unwilling to meet your needs, you're a lot more likely to gently put an end to things because you've already communicated to them exactly what it is you want. As licensed dating expert Doctor Chuba notes, "Qualities that many women are still developing in their teens and 20s, like good communication skills (especially the ability to advocate for themselves and ask for what they need and want), healthy boundaries, assertiveness, emotional maturity — all these qualities become more available to women by the time they reach their 30s" (via The Zoe Report).

No one to disappoint you

While the days can occasionally get lonely for single people, many of us who have been in relationships before know that there is nothing worse than feeling alone within a partnership. Because of all the pain that almost inevitably comes with being in a relationship, it sometimes feels as though we're better off not getting romantically involved at all. The hurt we might experience from a partner letting us down can be far worse than simply being on our own.


And according to relationship expert and assistant professor Yuthika Girme, being protected from romantic betrayal can be a huge pro in the long run. In fact, she told the Independent, "This is actually the first evidence that being single doesn't necessarily undermine life satisfaction or well-being, and in fact may offer benefits including protection against being hurt or rejected by relationship partners."

And let's just admit it. When our coupled-up friends complain about how their partner keeps letting them down, as bad as it sounds, it's hard not to feel like we hit the jackpot for choosing the single path. Why deliberately invest in all that drama?

More time to focus on your passions in life

Sometimes, when we meet that special person, we tend to reserve every ounce of passion in our bodies for our new lover. Yet when all of our time and energy is being thrust upon our significant other, we neglect the hobbies and pursuits that once meant so much to us. This is bad news because one of the worst things one can do when they enter a romantic relationship is neglect their deepest passions in life. Psychology Today even notes that the best way to have a healthy relationship is to maintain one's sense of self throughout. But sadly, a lot of people fail to do this, and they end up losing their identity while swept away in their little romance bubble. When you're on your own, you needn't worry about losing your sense of identity to your significant other. You have all the time in the world to focus on your deepest passions in life, whether that's music, theater, or painting.


But that's not all. According to Scientific American, people who place a strong value on artistic passions, in particular, are more likely to be single by choice. "Artistic creative acts tend to be more solo," explains Professor James Kaufman, a psychology expert at The University of Connecticut (via Mic). "'In some ways, it's not that different from people being 'married to their work'—some people can be 'married to their art.' In fact, the researchers also hypothesized that the energy needed to actually engage in deeply creative acts can take away from the energy needed to sustain a long-term relationship."

Less game playing while dating in your 30s

One of the most amazing upsides to being single in your 30s is that there is a whole lot less game playing involved. While dating in your 20s, there was likely enough game playing going on to cause whiplash. But unfortunately, incorporating these juvenile manipulation tactics within a relationship is one of the most surefire ways to cause disharmony and mistrust. As Business Insider notes, the brain fully develops by age 25. Assuming you're dating within your age range or older, the people you go out with will likely be too mature to waste their time (and yours) with little mind games. This means no more cryptic text messages or "playing hard to get" tactics. 


While dating in your 30s, there's a much better chance that you and your partner will be a lot more willing to communicate your needs, as opposed to just assuming your partner can read your mind. If you do experience mind games within a relationship, regardless of your age, don't worry. According to Psychology Today, the best way to deal with this is to be upfront with your partner about not wanting any form of game playing within the relationship. Psychologist Jefferey Bernstein suggests that all you have to do is tell them, "This is not acceptable anymore."

You're probably smarter than your coupled-up peers

Believe it or not, if you're single, there's a good chance that you have more intelligence than your friends who are in romantic relationships. This is especially the case for the ladies out there. We all know the common trope of the brilliant successful businessman going after a woman of a lesser educational background. And as it turns out, there's a reason why it's such a cliché. According to The Atlantic, men tend to go for women who are less successful than they are because, in effect, it's easier for them.


Ultimately, intelligent women often feel less inclined to date smart men because they don't have as much of a need to do so. It's easier for intelligent women to stand on their own two feet. Furthermore, a study done by The British Psychological Society suggests that people who have less of a desire to interact with other humans, in general, tend to be more intelligent than their highly social peers. (Introverts, we're looking at you!)

You refuse to settle

And last but most certainly not least, one of the best reasons to embrace singlehood in your 30s is because you absolutely refuse to settle. It's startling how many people out there enter romantic relationships for the wrong reasons. In fact, according to one study reported by CBS News, a whopping 73% of people feel as though they've settled in their marriage. Now that's a lot of people! But why are some individuals so quick to commit to a partner that they don't even feel all that passionate about? 


According to a study from the University of Toronto, many people settle in relationships out of fear. Whether that stems from the fear of being alone or the fear of not measuring up to society's standards, there are multiple reasons why this could be so. Yet if you're single at this point in your life, especially if by choice, there's a good chance that you would rather be independent than with someone who doesn't meet your standards. This is a beautiful thing that should be celebrated! So, keep your head up high, and enjoy all the wonderful perks of being single in your 30s. Clearly, there are a lot.