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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at RW chapter.

For men and women everywhere, finding love is the ultimate goal. Along the way, there are bumps in the road for sure, but the reward at the end is always worth it. That bumpy road for many people usually occurs during the pivotal years known as “The Early Twenties.” Being in your twenties means that you’re growing, and learning, and experiencing new things; it also means that you are longing for someone to share those moments with. Seeing your friends getting tied down and falling in love might make it even harder to be alone- but fear not, being single comes with its own amazing advantages and lessons, and even when it’s hard, it’s important to remember how much joy it can bring. 

One thing that I hate most is when I see my friends blend their daily routines to their significant other, and then see them walk away torn apart and feeling upset, alone, demoralized, and heartbroken while thinking there is absolutely no bright side to this. Since being single, I have been surrounded by friends in relationships and overwhelmed by “who do you love” posts and “couple goals” hashtags that have made me want to do nothing but throw my phone out the window and move away. But then I started accepting the fact that being single right now is okay and I can pursue all of my dreams and invest in myself, while feeling inspired, valuable, and seen. (Not that you can’t do this while in a relationship, but being single can allow you to do it on your own time). 

After my last relationship ended and my close friends’ relationships did too, we decided to take some intentional time out of the dating game, to give ourselves the space to heal, and to take life’s moments more seriously. Even when singleness gets hard, we remember that this time that we’re spending being single is allowing us to unreservedly live life. We focus on our friendships with the incredible people who have seen us through our craziest times..hey it happens to the best of us right?! We were able to concentrate on our inner selves to become the strongest, healthiest, coolest versions of who we can be. Eventually, some people in our single crew have broken off and started to date again, and they have proven taking this time off really does work and has the ability to make us better partners because of the hard self-care I’m doing now.

Since I have had my fair share of ups and downs in relationships in life, I have learned so much about rights and wrongs and dos and don’ts and to be frank, I have realized more about relationships by not being in them and seeing from the outside in. I have learned about the things that I do in relationships that aren’t great and the insecurities they stem from as well. My friends and I lived our best lives, and it allowed us to find the best people we could find in the process. The intense sense of community I found has been the most rewarding part of being single. If I had been dating someone during these past years I wouldn’t have gotten to travel with, live with, laugh with, and learn from all of my gal pals! Meeting these friends has been the coolest thing I have done thus far in my life. 

Twenty-something years…it took me a long long time to stop comparing myself and where I am to where some of my friends are in relationships. Eventually, I have been able to just take a look at where my life is, and I realize that my education, hobbies, and career is so much more important to me than being ‘settled down’  just for the sake of saying I have a significant other. 

While I’m no love expert, I do know from experience that your single years can be beautiful and life-giving in their own way, even when you feel like you want nothing more than to find a relationship. Having the time and space to build a life for yourself is something worth embracing, and it’s likely you won’t always have the freedom to do things on your terms. Take time to invest in the things that really matter to you, and trust that with time, your romantic life will flourish, too. 

Hello! My name is Emily Marshall and I am a senior at Roger Williams University. I love to read, write, travel, and spend time with my friends and family. Her Campus is so important to me because I believe that empowering women and supporting one another is essential in the world we live in today.