Six simple tips for how to thrive as a single student in Nottingham

Being on your ones isn’t all bad, here’s my advice on how to make the most of it

It’s not always the easiest thing being single. I mean, aside from total freedom to do whatever you want and loads of other great stuff, it can be nice to be in a relationship with a special someone. However, I believe that the best things come to those who aren’t looking, to those who focus on having fun on their own, and to those who refuse to settle for a sub-par relationship. This article will outline six simple steps, which will almost definitely make you the coolest single on campus.

Step 1: Romanticise every aspect of your life

Whether you imagine yourself in an old film or a book, it’s important to remember that you’re the main character and it’s your job to act like it. Chuck on the bulkiest pair of headphones you can find and make a beeline into town for some top-tier romanticising. Find the nearest cute cafe to read in (Waterstones cafe is a favourite of mine), take a trip to Nottingham Contemporary or even watch the world go by on a bench. Along the way, remember to remind yourself that if you were in a relationship you’d probably be stressed about something stupid at the present moment, and wouldn’t be as free to go on little expeditions such as these.

Step 2: Do your best to get out of the same old routine

Whilst structure can be a comfort at times, it doesn’t take long for life to become excruciatingly dull if you’re not switching things up from time to time. Break free from the monotony of everyday life and use your lonesome freedom to try new things. This may be something little like inviting some course-mates to a post-lecture coffee as opposed to just going straight home, or it could be something a little more adventurous like getting into the Notts music scene. The point is, there’s no better time to try new things than when you’re single, especially when you can focus on what you want, as opposed to always thinking about your significant others’ wants and needs as well. 

Step 3: Throw yourself into your work

Believe it or not, you probably won’t always be as single as you are now. Use this time of freedom and little responsibility to get into your course. The chances are that even if you aren’t entirely enamoured with your subject, there will be a little niche somewhere to make your own. Spend time actively trying to become interested in your degree by reading around the lectures or listening to podcasts on your area of study and you may even find some semblance of why you chose the course you did in the first place. You can even romanticise this too. Imagine yourself in a dark, dusty library (Hallward in the late hours will do fine) surrounded by old books, cobwebs and a sense of your own solipsism (remember you’re the main character) totally engulfed in important research. Get the coffee down you and get productive (in a cool, artsy, untouchable way of course).

Step 4: Keep count of all the money you’re not spending on a relationship

Relationships can be expensive. My housemates all spent upwards of £50 on Valentine’s Day and it was reportedly “NOT worth every penny” and “ridiculous considering it’s just an empty marketing scheme” (this was from both halves of the same couple, I think they’ll both be consulting this list sooner or later). Just think of all the things you could buy with an extra £50. Just to put things into perspective, that was enough money to buy 500 Freddo’s in 2005 but unfortunately a measly 185 these days. Even so, it’s crystal clear that relationship money is far better spent elsewhere.

Step 5: Prioritise your friendships

A lack of a romantic connection can give you the time to nourish the platonic ones that you already have. Go for a coffee in the Trent Cafe and be aloof together, and spend time looking down on and gossiping about your other friends who have had the ill judgement to get themselves into statistically, a likely futile relationship.

Step 6:

If all else fails here’s a list of anti-relationship films that will remind you that really, love is not all that:

  • Get Out
  • Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
  • Gone Girl
  • Marriage Story
  • Revolutionary Road
  • (500) Days of Summer
  • Closer
  • Fatal Attraction

and remember:

Related articles recommended by this author:

• Notts-based supporters of Animal Rebellion ‘Paint The Streets’ in night of national action

• Third year is stressful but there’s a bittersweet sense that it’s all coming to an end

• Six top tips to secure your dream grad job as a student in Notts