“Why am I single?” Here are 15 reasons why & what you can do about it

“Why am I single?”

Are you asking yourself this question?

You’re not alone.

I thought the same thing 2 years ago before I met my current girlfriend.

Get this:

I was single for 10 god-damn years!

It was a struggle. I felt like a loser.

I wasn’t single because I was too busy or too lazy. I actively tried to find a girlfriend.

I swiped on dating apps. I tried approaching girls at bars and cafes. I made friends, but it rarely turned romantic.

But as it turns out, there were a number of obvious reasons why I was single for so long.

At the time I didn’t realize it, but it’s clear as day now.

So today, I’m going to go through all the common reasons that lead to people being single.

I hope you can find it useful. I know it would have helped me when I was perpetually single.

1. I was too needy.

I’m not proud to admit, but I was way too needy.

I sought approval from girls. My happiness depended on attractive girls accepting me.

Of course, with that kind of attitude, it didn’t happen very often.

The result? I was a severely insecure guy.

Rather than developing my confidence from within, I relied on outside influences.

I’m sure you’ll agree with me when I say:

Depending on others for your own happiness and confidence is never a good idea.

So if you constantly depend on other people and you cling to them like glitter, stop.

Neediness is unattractive.

Be independent and show others that you’re in control of your own life.

In fact, slash that. You don’t need to show others you’re in control. Just live your life.

Spend some time alone and be mature enough to handle your own business.

The right person doesn’t need to be chased.

2. There’s a reason why you’re single.

You might not realize it, but there’s probably a reason why you’re single.

And no, it’s not because you didn’t follow that magazine’s 10 Steps To Finding The One.

The reason is probably that you need to work on some things for yourself.

It can be anything from building your career, discovering your passions, or to simply even finding yourself.  

As I mentioned above, I was single because I was insecure. I depended on other’s approval.

Being needy simply isn’t attractive. And girls can sniff a needy guy from a mile away.

Perhaps there’s an underlying issue you have not able to address.

Have you been using relationships to compensate for something?

It’s almost ironic, but there are some things that you only discover when you’re alone.

So take this moment to seek some clarity about what you’re really looking for right now.

So that when the right person comes along, you’re as ready and as clear-minded as you can ever be.

3. You’re hiding from others

To be honest with you, I actively avoided socializing with others, sometimes even my friends.


Because I wasn’t confident. Putting myself in social situations made me feel anxious and worthless.

But avoiding these situations only made it worse in the long run.

The more girls I avoided talking to, the harder it became.

If I had my time over again, I’d make sure I would attend as many social events as I could.

Not for the singular goal of picking up a woman. But just to make more friends. Be more connected.

Yes, finding the time to meet new people can be challenging, especially, if you always have a busy schedule.

But completely isolating yourself from human contact might negatively affect not only your social life, but also your chances of meeting your potential significant other.

Try maintaining a healthy balance between work life and social life by spending some time with other people.

Be single and ready to mingle.

How on earth are you going to meet people if you don’t get out of the house once in a while?

Even if you use online dating to find people to go out with, you are missing out on chance encounters, introductions, and more!

4. Work on your personality.

This is really important.

It might be time to ask yourself, “what are some of my unlikable traits?”

This is how I came across the insight that I was insecure with myself.

I asked myself, “why aren’t females attracted to me?”

The answer was obvious.

In conversations with others (especially women) I acted needy and took things personally.

I felt like small things, like ignoring something I said, was a personal attack on me.

But it wasn’t. I was just too sensitive and insecure.

Don’t get me wrong:

Asking yourself what people don’t like about you is tough. You might have to confront some brutal truths about yourself.

But it’s essential if you want to open the door to potential relationships.

For example, do you try too hard to impress others?

Nobody likes a showoff, and if you are trying to impress people with your money, cars, home, or knowledge, you can stop right now.

People, more than ever, just want to feel connected to one another.

When you are throwing all of your achievements at them, they don’t get to know the real you.

Plus, it’s pretty annoying to listen to someone talk about themselves and their stuff all the time.

Just let people get to know the real you and be humble. You’ll be doing yourself a favor.

If you happen to have any other toxic traits, acknowledge them and work towards having a better personality.

Always treat other people with kindness and you’ll end up attracting kind people, too.

Remember to prioritize what’s inside of you and not what’s on the outside.

5. Make yourself better.

Ever heard the saying:

If you’re not growing, you’re not really living?

Change is inevitable, it’s part of life and it is important if you want a better life.

I never really focused on my own personal development and it hurt my life in more ways than I can count.

Now I realize that to live a fulfilling life it’s important to keep learning, growing, and improving yourself.

Work on other aspects of your lifestyle such as your appearance, your personality, and your career and improve them to the best of your abilities.

Be honest with yourself:

Where can you improve?

Not only will this help you attract a potential partner, but it would also help your life in general.

Change for the better and work towards self-improvement.

6. Get over your ex

I’ve seen countless people get way too hung up on their ex.

Quite some time has passed and you still haven’t moved on from your ex. This might negatively affect your future relationships.

Not moving on from your ex might push other people away from you and you’ll lose the chance of getting to know them.

Get over your ex and focus on the now.

It’s useless to continuously think of what’s behind you to the point of not seeing what’s in front of you.

Your present is far more important than your past.

To dive deep into strategies and techniques to help you get over your ex, check out my latest eBook: The Art of Breaking Up: The Ultimate Guide to Letting Go of Someone You Loved.

7. And don’t compare people you meet with your ex.

Your ex is an ex for a reason. It’s in the past and it’s best to let it stay in the past where it belongs.

Stop comparing everyone you meet with your ex or you’ll end up being single forever.

People are different. And when you meet someone new, of course, you’re not going to have the same connection that you had with your ex. It’s impossible.

But guess what? It’s also impossible to ever find a similar connection with someone else unless you give them a chance.

If someone is showing interest to you, see them for who they are and not for what you want them to be.

Move on and let go.

8. Stop acting like a victim

This may sound a little harsh, but if you’re asking yourself, “why am I single?” then I can bet my bottom dollar that you think you’re unlucky and that the world is against you.

The bottom line is this:

The world isn’t out to get you.

That I can guarantee.

Sometimes you need to take responsibility.

If you feel like the victim in your own life, you need to stop and think about how you let other people impact your outlook on life.

For example, if someone makes a snide remark about you, logic would dictate that it’s a reflection of their own self-worth.

But in many cases, we think illogically about these things and feel like we are being attacked.

In fact, research by a Wake Forest University psychology professor found that what you say about others says a lot about you.

“Your perceptions of others reveal so much about your own personality”, says Dustin Wood, assistant professor of psychology at Wake Forest and lead author of the study.

“A huge suite of negative personality traits are associated with viewing others negatively”.

So if you take these results to heart, there is literally no point in taking things personally.

What people say about you clearly says more about themselves than anything to do with you.

Spiritual guru Osho says that it’s crucial to start looking inside yourself, rather than being disturbed about anything anybody says about you.

“Nobody can say anything about you. Whatsoever people say is about themselves. But you become very shaky because you are still clinging to a false center. That false center depends on others, so you are always looking at what people are saying about you. And you are always following other people, you are always trying to satisfy them. You are always trying to be respectable, you are always trying to decorate your ego. This is suicidal. Rather than being disturbed by what others say, you should start looking inside yourself…”

9. Don’t expect too much.

Some people end up being single forever because they set unrealistic expectations for a relationship.

I used to dream of the perfect woman with the physical attributes you would only see in Hollywood movies.

But I’m no movie star. I’m just an ordinary guy that was deeply insecure. And when I accepted this about me, I started to meet people who were in “my league”.

Boy did it make me happier, and when I became happier and more confident, I started to meet more attractive girls anyway.

The moral of the story?

Avoid expecting too much from someone and set realistic and achievable standards.

Having a high standard is good. Just don’t set it too high to an unrealistic level or else you’ll end up with no one but yourself.

10. Don’t hinge your self-worth on your dating title

I’ve seen this time and time again. Some people think (especially women) that because they’re single they’re suck in every aspect of life.

I used to think the same. But it’s a ridiculous attitude to adopt.

Instead of stressing about being single at 30, why not celebrate the aspects of your life that aren’t related to dating?

Why would you let other people swiping your profile left or right define your self-worth, contributing to your inferiority complex?

Don’t wait for the perfect date. Be the perfect date. Treat yourself to your favorite restaurant. Go on that romantic retreat anyway.

Use all that time to take care of yourself. Go to a gym. Get fit. Take long hiking trips. Spend time with your loved ones.  

Don’t waste your time looking for a perfect date. Work on making yourself the kind of person you would actually want to date.

You don’t need another person to “complete” you. You’re already whole as you are. And you’re also awesome! You of all people should recognize that.

Before anything else, you need to be able to love yourself the way you want to be loved by a partner.

(If dive deep into self-love techniques, check out my ultimate guide on how to love yourself here)

11. It’s okay to have high standards.

“You’re single because you have such high standards.”

You probably hear this a lot. And you probably thought that it’s exactly the reason why you’re single.

But truth be told, it actually prevents you from making the biggest mistake of your life.

I used to dream about the perfect girl. She would be smart, beautiful, we could have intelligent conversations.

But in hindsight, that’s what closed me off from potential relationships.

I judged women too much. Based on a first impression, I would say that she isn’t right for me.

But first impressions are rarely correct, and they close you off from developing a connection with someone you could have a beautiful romance with.

But that being said, you need to have some standards.

Don’t ever date someone just because you don’t want to be alone. You’ll end up 40 with a mid-life crisis, married to someone you’re actually not compatible with, and stuck because you have kids.

So many people “settle” these days because they think being single is worse.

But would you really rather stay with the wrong person than taking your time to find someone you’ll have much better chances with?

Having said all that, it’s also important to realize that there is no “perfect” person for you.

That person does not exist. But someone out there can make you happy, can become your life partner, and can be everything you never thought you needed.

Manage your expectations. Not everyone will tick all the boxes of your list, but there’s someone out there who’s going to be close.

Recommended reading: I’m not ready for a relationship but I like him. What should I do?

12. Learn to be fine on your own.

There’s a difference between being “lonely” and being “alone.”

The first is a state of mind while the latter is a state of being.

We’re often taught that you can’t be truly happy when we’re alone. Common knowledge says your most joyful and happy moments are when you’re with your family or close friends.

And that’s a fair assumption. We are social beings after all.

But it doesn’t mean that alone time isn’t important. And it certainly doesn’t mean that loners are miserable, despite what society might think.

In fact, in my experience, I’ve been able to find happiness when I’m alone. For me, I use this time to reflect, understand my feelings and dive deep into where my life is going.

Loneliness seeps at you in moments. It’s 3 am and you’re lying in bed awake, missing the feeling of another person beside you. It’s natural to feel lonely from time to time. The difference is in trying to be okay with being alone.

It’s about thriving in that state of solitude and realizing that you don’t need to be lonely. This is how you learn to love your own company.

Realize that you’re not missing anything. But you are missing out on the opportunity to live your life if you’re too focused on being lonely.

13. Don’t turn into a pessimist.

All of your last romantic forays have left you convinced no one will ever treat you right. Your last date went horribly wrong. And you’ve been ghosted far too many times, it’s almost paranormal.

You have a reason to be careful. That’s a good thing. You’re more cautious, you’ll recognize the signs clearer, and you’ll make better choices.

But don’t let your past make you pessimistic. There are still good people out there.

And if someone as amazing as you are single, then there is bound to be some good ones out there.

(Resilience and mental toughness are crucial to living your best life even when it’s challenging. To dive deep into how to build your own mental toughness, check out Hack Spirit’s eBook: The Art of Resilience: A Practical Guide to Developing Mental Toughness)

14. Surround yourself with the right people.

This is not only crucial when you’re single, but also in your life as a whole.

The quality of the people around you shapes who you are. They affect how you look at things, how you react, and how you think.

Make sure you’re surrounded by people who support you and pull you up.

The right friends will make these challenging times a lot easier and a whole lot more fun if you let them.

There’s also nothing wrong with cutting off toxic people from your life. It’s during this time, more than ever, that you need the kind of people who make your life better, not worse.

15. Try to be patient.

Yes, it’s easier said than done. But good things do come to those who wait. And better things come to those who wait patiently.

Have the confidence that when the time is right and when all of the pieces click together, that you’ll find “the one.”

For now, don’t make the mistake of chasing for the wrong things. The only thing you’re doing is keeping yourself from seeing the right thing when it finally comes along.

Focus on what you ultimately want and ignore everything else that falls short.


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Lachlan Brown

I’m Lachlan Brown, the founder, and editor of Hack Spirit. I love writing practical articles that help others live a mindful and better life. I have a graduate degree in Psychology and I’ve spent the last 15 years reading and studying all I can about human psychology and practical ways to hack our mindsets. Check out my latest book on the Hidden Secrets of Buddhism and How it Saved My Life. If you want to get in touch with me, hit me up on Facebook or Twitter.

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