In the age of instant gratification, more and more individuals are happy chasing their dreams and staying single
If you aren’t sure about something, you Google it. If you want to find a destination, you click Google Maps. To get a ride, you book an Ola or Uber cab. Then again, social media gives you the instant ability to upload videos, photos and status updates, for which you receive instant feedback. In the age of instant gratification, you don’t have to wait for things to happen.
When it comes to relationships too, people are choosing instant love and engaging in the casual dating culture. In fact, more and more youngsters and even the older generation are choosing a ‘no strings attached’ status, which does not bind them to obligations like commitment and marriage. Unlike a few decades ago, when people wanted to settle for a steady job, work for a 9-5 work cycle, have a happy family and kids, the scenario has undergone a sea change.
Single status and liberation
Vandana Bhaskar, Mumbai-based clinical psychologist, says, “Today, in the age of instant gratification, youngsters feel that they do not have time to invest in others, instead they can work towards doing what they like and aim for. Plus the millennials are not as dependent as the previous generation, they associate being single with liberation. For example, someone who is married may not be able to quit his/ her job and travel the word or a woman in a relationship may feel obligated to return home early or hangout with only female friends.”
Today’s youngsters prefer Netflix, travelling, a job abroad, a luxurious cruise, instant pizzas, casual dating, sex and partying over a relationship that may come in the way of their dreams and goals.
Single but not lonely
The single status is not restricted to any gender. But choosing to stay without a partner does not make them sad or lonely. Rohan Makhika, 28, a graphic designer from Bengaluru, says that perhaps his life is more happening than most other guys of his age. “Being single is an extension of my personality. I have chosen to not fall into the trap of a committed relationship, instead I like to focus on what makes me happy. I travel almost once a month and that gives me a new perspective on life. I volunteer for social work, play my favourite sport, party hard with friends and occasionally have flings. I do not have to divide my attention or devote time to someone else,” she insists.
Freedom from heartbreaks
“Love comes with a price tag and after having a few heartbreaks, I found that life is beautiful without a companion. You do not need someone in your life. Being single makes you stronger and more independent,” exclaims Shaheen Sheikh, 36, a Delhi-based n IT professional who has decided to say single for the rest of her life.
She adds, “Relationships bind you, make you consider a thousand things before you take a step. Being alone makes you more carefree — you look at the world through rose-coloured glasses. You are not afraid to take a chance, and choose to fight your own demons, celebrate your victory, cry but pick up those pieces to walk like a completely new person every day. I am too selfish to give up this joy.”
Age no bar
If you think it is only youngsters who are advocating for ‘single life,’ then probably you haven’t met the ones who are cherishing being without a companion even in their 50s. Chennai-based artist and writer Mrunalini Krishnan, 51, feels as a woman she feels empowered to be living without a partner for more than two decades now. “Trust me,” she insists, “there is nothing like being all by yourself and living life on your own terms. Love has become too superficial in this age of social media and I am far away from that age where you get carried away by things. For me, love is loving myself each passing day, loving my four-legged sons and loving my art. This world is a beautiful place I’ve fallen in love with it and have made solitude my partner. It gives me solace.”
Similarly Bhaskar Singh, a theatre artist from Delhi feels his passion for this craft is too strong to not let any woman overpower it. The 42-year-old says, “Why get entangled in bonds when you feel liberated by just being with yourself and chasing your dreams? I do not want to depend emotionally on someone or let that affect my work. When you are alone, you take charge of your life in a better way. Of course this is subjective!”