Guess what, single friends! You're working too hard. All that angst and stress you feel, never getting to hang out with your pals, not enough time to jet off to India or the Bahamas if you feel like it, not even enough time to plan said trips or even pick up your dry cleaning without it waiting in the laundromat for a week and a half and then when you get it the dry cleaner gives you that look and you know he's judging you so you don't go back for another month and then it's just the same thing all over again? The Wall Street Journal's Sue Shellenbarger has a tip for you: You're doing it wrong. This is because you—single little old you—have it hard, too! As she explains,
"Being single takes a lot of time. There's no one else to pick up milk or take out the recycling on the right day or wait at home for the plumber. It's just you."
Right, right. These are difficulties we singles face. If we were not single presumably our husbands, wives, or children would ease the load of these difficulties, allowing us the luxurious lives which we truly deserve. Far from them needing our attention, we would have theirs reaped upon us, and this would make our lives easier. The milk would be picked up like clockwork, as would the dry cleaning. But alas, we are not so lucky; we are single by choice or not. So, what should we do?
Shellenbarger tells the tale of Anne Marie Bowler, an icon for our time. She is single. She used to work 12 hours a day or more at a big New York City law firm. Consider her trials!
- Having to cancel plans with friends.
- Not getting to the gym enough, or possibly ever.
- "She yearned for more control."
Yep, sounds about right, and totally exclusive to single people! What did Bowler do? She quit her job, and has a new one. Now she has time for dinner at sidewalk cafes while it's still light out, long evening bike rides in the park, and the opportunity to leave her new office to go to charity golf outings and such. What availed her all of this freedom? She started her own firm with a colleague. Shellenbarger writes, "She is still immersed in clients' cases and often works long hours. But 'I wanted to have a life—a full life—which meant not just always working,' says Ms. Bowler, now 36."