There comes a point in our 20s when life warns us to stop thinking about ourselves and start contributing to society.
We have to start working, paying taxes and maintaining relationships so we can populate the world.
Though working and taxes are inevitable (sneakers and coffee don’t pay for themselves), do we have to be in relationships?
Being in a relationship, particularly marriage, is an important milestone we’re all taught to desire. Your life isn’t complete unless you’ve found the love of your life (or, at least, your life right now).
It’s something we can’t escape; we see it on the streets, in films and online, where engagement posts constantly appear on your Facebook News Feed.
However, there are a select few who don’t feel relationships are the top priority. It’s not that they’re shy, introverted or unable to get or maintain relationships; they just prefer doing things on their own.
Their focus is satisfying their needs, and their needs only.
This can even transcend to their friendships and family relationships. These independent people aren’t complete loners or socially inept.
In fact, most of them are probably the most charismatic and extroverted when they need to be. They just know their social limits.
Being independent isn’t something we should shame. If you prefer enjoying a coffee alone rather than with friends, that’s completely fine.
If you’d rather share your double bed with yourself rather than another person, that’s your choice.
If you just want your space, it is your space. Some people just don’t need people, and that is okay. They just love that solo lifestyle.
Here are some 10 signs you prefer riding solo:
1. You love free weekends
Your type of weekend is one that involves no plans, responsibilities or socializing.
You’d rather stay at home alone with your favorites — Netflix, Chinese takeout and sweatpants — than go out on a Saturday night with cover charges, drunken people and clothes that are far too fitted.
2. You’ll go to the movies on your own
You don’t feel the need to coerce your friends to watch the latest Oscar film or 80s TV series turned movie reboot. If you want to see a movie, you’ll see the movie, friends or not.
Especially if you’re the kind of person who likes to stay updated with the latest films. Plus, you’re guaranteed to have all the popcorn to yourself.
3. You’re comfortable with eating out by yourself
Going out to dinner with friends or significant others can be fun, but it can also be a nightmare (think allergies, forced conversations and splitting bills). Hence, why you’re a big fan of eating out alone.
You don’t have to cater to everyone’s needs, budgets or aesthetic preferences. Plus, you’re guaranteed all the food to yourself. Who even enjoys sharing food?
4. You prefer drinking on your own
Some think it’s sad if you consume alcohol alone. However, you think it’s the epitome of happiness. Just you, a bottle of wine and no expectations. Plus, you don’t have to worry about trying to get home because you’re already home.
5. You travel the world solo
The idea of discovering the world on your own doesn’t scare you — it exhilarates you. It allows you to go where you want, see what you want and do what you want, without the restriction of someone else’s itinerary.
Traveling on your own allows you to discover yourself without the distraction and pressure of another person’s presence.
It also allows you the opportunity to step out of your comfort zone and make new friends.
Traveling solo is fun, but traveling with strangers is even more fun because they don’t have preconceived judgments of you.
6. You hate sharing beds
Double beds are generally made for you to share with someone, but you prefer to starfish in the summer and wrap you body in a blanket burrito in the winter.
You have no interest in fighting over blankets during the night or waking up to another person’s bad breath.
7. You find driving alone calming
Nothing cures a bad day and dark thoughts better than a solo drive to the beach or on an open highway.
In a world of constant social interaction (online and offline), solo driving is your mechanism to escape the world for a brief moment.
Plus, you can turn on your music and change it whenever you want.
8. You neglect your phone, a lot
You don’t feel the need to constantly text friends or significant others for social interaction.
If anything, you probably hate receiving pointless calls and text messages. Sometimes, you forget to check your phone or reply to messages.
9. You can be socially MIA for long periods of time
Sometimes your friends or family won’t see you for days, weeks or even months. They aren’t worried about whether you’ve died because you’ve updated on social media at least once. They just know that you just have your socializing limits.
You don’t feel the need to socialize every waking moment. Though you’re capable of enjoying a night out with friends, you’d prefer just doing your own thing, whether it’s a new project or reading a classic.
10. You see “clingy” as an unattractive trait
The idea of being unable to get out of a commitment scares you, whether it’s committing to having dinner with friends, being in a relationship, or even your mobile-phone contract.
You need that space to be alone, physically and mentally. You can’t stand someone who constantly wants to be attached, especially to you.
Even when you’re in a relationship, you need that alone time to gain your sanity. Someone who requires your undivided attention is an automatic deal-breaker.
No matter how demanding work, family, friends and relationships can get, you always need that time to step away from it all and have that space to yourself.
Your moments and thoughts alone are the only things society can’t control. Your decisions are wholeheartedly your decisions, and you love that.