The actress, Emma Watson, recently said she is “self-partnered.” According to the therapist, Julia Bartz, LMSW, and Psychology Today, self-partnering can lead to a better relationship with yourself in addition to those you come in contact with, including friends and family. In other words, it can change your life.
It is the commitment that you make to yourself to honor your needs while healing any wounds. The goal is to work toward your self-actualization and your own growth. Your next question might be, “what are some of the strategies to use to self-partner and improve my connection with others as well as foster my own self-growth?” The answer involves:
- Expectations of society
- Taking care of yourself
- Seeking pleasure and experiencing it
- Cultivating a community
- Facing your fears
Single adults have seen shame put upon them that are based on society’s expectations of relationships. It can be challenging for those who do not follow traditional relationship norms.
A self-partnered person can question the expectations of society while defining their own goals. Regardless of the opinions of others, we can make choices based on our goals and aspirations instead of the goals that other people thought we should have.
Taking Care of Yourself
This means eating healthy foods and getting enough exercise. Whether walking, dancing, or doing your favorite sport, taking care of yourself and slowing down will be of benefit to others as well as yourself. It may sound selfish to consider your own needs, but the benefit is given to all those around you. When you feel exhausted and stressed, caring for others is much more difficult.
Slowing down and getting out of our thoughts can bring pleasure, excitement, and joy. Exploring your body means experiencing activities like dance, yoga, meditation, and mindfulness. These activities give you the chance to get to know and explore yourself.
If you do not know how this is done, ask yourself what it is that is keeping you from experiencing pleasure? It does not have to be an erotic activity. Think about activities that give you joy and make a more conscious effort to include them in your life.
Another question to ask yourself, who supports you in meeting your needs? It does not have to be a romantic partner. A community can come from:
- People we mentor
Where can you find the people to help you foster a sense of community? This is what you might try to discover in self-partnering.
Face the Fear
Uncomfortable feelings, such as sadness, loss, and loneliness can be overwhelming at times. These are cues that may point the way to wounds that need to be healed. If you need therapy, seek it out. Empowerment and change come from knowing what your fears are and addressing them. This should be with someone who feels compassion. You must also feel self-compassion in addressing these fears.
Self-partnering can change your life. You can be happy while single, but self-partnering means that you can be happy for your lifetime, whether you are in a relationship or not. Healing your wounds, honoring your needs, and working towards self-growth and self-actualization can affirm and change your life.