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KITOTO: How one can live a single, steady and successful life

Monday February 11 2019

Seen as a padlock that keeps outsiders from freely influencing one, self-control provides a single person with the ability to steer themselves to their future.

Seen as a padlock that keeps outsiders from freely influencing one, self-control provides a single person with the ability to steer themselves to their future. PHOTO| FILE| NATION MEDIA  

PHILIP KITOTO
By PHILIP KITOTO
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Remaining focused, vibrant, and goal-oriented keeps one attractive and satisfied with life instead of waiting for validation from someone else.

I don’t intend to be preachy, but I have always found the words of the Apostle Paul most fascinating in regard to his advice on family, relationships and marriage. The arguments Paul presents to the Corinthian church include singleness.

Just like marriage, singleness is a gift to be respected and enjoyed within its bounds. Second, each stage in life, including singleness and marriage, comes with responsible behaviour that comes from a sincere commitment.

Perhaps the greatest reason for single people wanting to get married is the assumption that marriage will either complete them, meet all their needs, solve all their problems, organise their lives and unleash all the potential in them.

However, singleness is about being you, building your self-worth and enjoying every step without compromise. You don’t want to look back when the spouse is here and the children have come to end up saying, “I wish…”

Take charge of your life

Leading yourself is part of maturing who you are, and the approach you have towards your life. Singleness gives one the opportunity to enjoy freedom and to invest in oneself. Because a person has all the time and resources to themselves, they can have the flexibility do whatever they want.

However, because this does not mean living irresponsibly, leading self brings to the table two key components: Self-awareness and Self-management. Relational intelligence requires these two components.

Self-awareness has to deal with taking responsibility to understand what drives your behaviour, attitudes, perceptions, and emotions.

Control one’s emotions

This helps you discover your strengths and weaknesses. Armed with this knowledge, you will be able to identify your areas that call for development.

Self-management is the ability to control one’s emotions and behaviour to achieve a certain desired end. When one understands how they respond to others, it helps them change how they act and behave.

While culture and people’s expectation plays a big role in how singles view themselves, there are other factors that a single person has to deal with. First, fear of being alone. Don’t allow this make you feel less of a person.

Instead, practice selflessness while you’re still alone. Enjoy freedoms while still alone. Embracing kindness and a public spirit will keep you energetic in life. Instead of being huddled in a corner by comments and words of people, we need to win them by our unselfish concern.

Second, singleness is a challenge to self-control. The primary area of self-control is in sexuality. While many desire to be in a relationship for the right reasons, many more are in it for selfish reasons.

Longer-term goals

Every single must develop an ability to subdue their impulses, emotions, and behaviour for the benefits of their longer-term goals. Seen as a padlock that keeps outsiders from freely influencing one, self-control provides a single person with the ability to steer themselves to their future.

There are many who choose to stay single regardless of the promising future that could beckon at their door step.

Fear of the unknown

Past baggage can hurt how singles view themselves, or those who would like to connect with them, especially where that past is of deep pain, regrets of actions done to them, or fears arising from such a cloudy past. Many would rather forget such a past.

However, flashes from a past of abuse, neglect, absentee parents, or too much control can paint for one a picture of a future they may fear to be part of. As a result, some take on singlehood because of fear of the unknown.

Dealing with such pain from the past is key to living in freedom — whether married or single. Your personal freedom from fears brings you to a place of self-confidence and a feeling of self-worth.

In an article I read a while ago by Marisa Cohen, individuals with stronger fears were more likely to lower their standards, both in their current relationships and when selecting new mates. This could lead to greater dependence in less satisfying relationships.

In other relationships, if such past pain cannot lead to dependence, it will lead to a person not settling in any relationship.

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No man in sight, yet I crave marriage

Dear Kitoto,

I am 38 years old and I am in a stable job. I also have a 10-year-old son, born from a relationship that never was. To date, I have not found a man to love me. The many who have shown interest have done it for wrong reasons. It feels so lonely and I at times wonder if there is anything wrong with me. Will I ever get a man to marry me?

Hi

You have three pertinent issues to deal with. First, you are a mother of a son that will need your daily support and guidance through life, your marriage status notwithstanding.

Second, you have a past you need to resolve, particularly where that past could hurt how you view yourself today.

Third, consider how a new relationship will infringe on you relationship with your son and your career.

I believe that both marriage and singleness are a gift and a responsibility. Parenting is even a greater responsibility. For the period you’ve been endowed with the gift of singleness, you need to enjoy it and live it with pride and responsibility.

A time will come for you to transit from singlehood to marriage. When that happens, you will have lived well as a single, matured and become ready through the challenges, experiences and responsibilities of life. Enjoy it and live it.

The problem with many singles is their failure to see the blessedness of singlehood, hence they fail to make a conscious choice to enjoy it. Each stage in life has it blessings, demands and challenges. I encourage you to live you singleness with pride and honour.

Be your best and seek to reach your potential. Give the best to your son. Let this be your key responsibility for now. His future hinges on the actions and choices you make today.

Marriage does not necessarily complete one. We can be single, stable, happy and able to reach the potential we were created for. Feelings of loneliness should not create anxiety that could lead you to making choices you might regret later. If you make finding of a spouse an urgent matter, you will easily compromise on qualities you desire in a husband.

I pray that when that man finally comes, he will find you at your best. If he doesn’t, you still have to remain your best. Don’t let what you feel make you desperate or despondent. Be you and make choices you won’t live to regret.

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