Here are six ways to slap yourself in the face (without slapping yourself in the face) when you're down about being single.
1. Who cares?
People will give you all of this terrible advice (all the time) about how you'll find the "one" when you're not really looking. I'm never looking and I still haven't found the one. Or that you need to love yourself before someone loves you. Oh please, people loved me when I was 14 and had braces and pimples -- and I definitely didn't love myself then!
But the truth is, when you want something to happen -- and this applies to everything in life -- you actually need to try. So if you want a dating life, you need to do something about it. You need to motivate yourself to get off the couch, put on some pants and sit across from Mr. Wrong about 45 times before you find Mr. Right.
And don't do this unless you're ready to do this. And you'll know when you're ready to this simply because the thought of online dating won't make you nauseous and you will actually be excited to be set up with a friend of a friend of a friend.
2. Social media is a lie
People only post the really, really good or the really, really bad. Don't let someone's hashtags or smooching photos freak you out. They didn't post about their terrible dates or their heartbreaks or the amount of times they fully swore they'd be alone forever before they found the one.
3. You're not alone
You're not the only person who feels perpetually single or the only person who feels like they are never, ever going to find anyone. I'm not saying we should all form some kind of support group where we meet once a week and cry in each others shoulders. I'm just saying we should accept that there is nothing wrong with us.
4. There's no one right way to live
Back in the '50s, women were married at 18 and their career was raising a family. Now, women build careers before they build a family. And there's nothing wrong with either path. Your life, and how you live it, is your choice. So don't compare your timeline of events to your (Facebook) friend's.
5. Appreciate what you have
That's the hardest part, isn't it? Next time someone asks you "Why are you single?", You can say: Well, I don't know... but here's why I have this awesome job. Or, "Here's what my awesome friends and i have planned for Labor Day." Or, "Here's this awesome app that I just spent seven months building." We are more than just our relationship status. Don't forget that.
6. Be happy for other people
Try, really try hard. Jealously is a terrible feeling. Really, it is. And I'll be the first to admit, when a friend calls me to let me know they just got engaged, my first thought is I lost another one. But then, right after that, I'm in tears because I really am so happy for them. I've been there with them from the start. I was there before they met their fiancé. I was there when they went on 27 bad dates. And all in all, I know -- well, I just hope -- that all of these friends who are engaged will be there for me one day, if I do meet the man of my dreams, to dance the electric slide and the cupid shuffle and the Harlem shake with me at my wedding some day.
Follow Jen Glantz on Twitter: www.twitter.com/tthingsilearned