Single In CLE
Celebrate Singledom in CLEBy: Lexi Hotchkiss
Not in a relationship? Big deal.
That's our sentiments on the subject here in Cleveland, where more than one in three adults are living the single life.
According to Dr. Joseph Rock, Psy.D., a clinical psychologist at the Cleveland Clinic Willoughby Hills Behavioral Health Center, enjoying being single is all about shifting your focus.
"If you look at being single as though ‘I don't have someone special to do something with,' you start focusing on ‘what I don't have,'" he says. "It's a great idea to look at all the things you've got going for yourself. Think about it: ‘I'm free to go out and do things with my friends, I'm free to engage in activities that I love and I can spend my money the way I want.'"
But, as big holidays associated with coupledom near, the unattached life starts feeling less celebratory and more discouraging.
"When you look at certain holidays like that, you're picking an arbitrary date or season that society says you should feel a certain way," he says. "Don't let your expectations be dictated by other people."
Here in Cleveland we not only embrace singledom - we celebrate it. And, thanks to some help from Dr. Rock, we've come up with some great ways to write your very own "Single in CLE" story.
Spend Time With Friends
"Engage in activities that you really enjoy," Rock says. "Spend time with friends."
Not much compares to that laugh-until-you-cry time spent with your best buds. So, why not take some time to schedule a trip to CLE?
Perhaps you and the girls need to do some in-depth "research" into Cleveland's wine country. Or, maybe make it a bro-mantic night out on a beer tour through Cleveland's hottest ‘hoods. And, seriously, what good compadre is going to turn down a solid CLE Sunday Funday?
"One of the advantages of not being in a committed relationship is that you're free to do what you like to do," says Rock.
So, invite your thespian chum (don't we all have one?) to see a real Broadway blockbuster right here at PlayhouseSquare. Plan a quaint weekend escape through Cleveland's Amish country. Or, just catch one of CLE's pro sports teams with the whole crew.
Make Some Me Time
"Don't say, ‘My life doesn't start until I'm with somebody.' That's ridiculous!" Rock says.
So, go ahead and cross these bad boys off your bucket list today -- what are you waiting for?
"Celebrate where you are," Rock says. "Eat what you want and spend money the way you want."
That being said, we think it's time you go ahead and treat yourself to something indulgent and delicious while in Cleveland -- you deserve it, dear Single Friend. What would a trip to Cleveland be without a little chocolate, cake and cookies with your travels? And, remember, ice cream sundaes don't complain about your friends.
You officially have our permission to reflect on the good things in your life while quietly perusing the city's public art scene.
Find Other Singles
"Cleveland has a very vibrant singles scenes in a lot of different areas and neighborhoods," Rock says.
And, we couldn't agree more.
The young and highly educated often gravitate toward the University Circle area, which is not only home to the Cleveland Museum of Art and the Cleveland Orchestra, but also thousands of students. That's not even mentioning the myriad of medical professionals who hail from all over the world to work at places like the Cleveland Clinic and University Hospitals.
Others make their way to the near West Side where on any given night you'll be treated to an indie lifestyle that's simply infectious. Whether you're exploring the rich craft beer scene along West 25th Street in Ohio City, taking in a monthly art walk in Tremont or dining in the Detroit-Shoreway Neighborhood, singles are aplenty in these trendy Cleveland neighborhoods.
If you're looking for that traditional nightclub experience, head to West 6th Street in the Warehouse District in downtown Cleveland on weekend nights. There, you'll find tons of single folks doing what we Clevelanders do best -- party-hardy rock and roll. Places like the Velvet Dog even embrace the single life by hosting parties like their annual Anti-Valentine's Day bash.
"Those feelings of sadness or anxiousness that come up around these holidays tend to be disorders of passivity. It's as though you're saying, ‘I'm waiting for good things to happen to me. I don't have the power to do that for myself,'" Rock says.
So, take the leap, head to a new place and swap a number or two. Because, after all, single life is all about what you make of it.
How else can visitors celebrate the single life right here in CLE? Share your thoughts in the comments.