After learning of the fabulous, single-female-empowering icon Helen Gurley Brown passing this month, I couldn’t help but think… Wait? Where are all of the single and fabulous, empowering women out there now?
Of course, some of you may have a think: Candice Kumai is a food writer. She writes cookbooks. I mean what does she know about being single? Ha. Well, here’s some insider I’ll share with you: Single. I’m great at that too. I’m also someone who has been doing that (being single) for the past four+ years of my life.
…Here’s the kicker. I’m okay with that. I am happy. I am independent. I am my own person. I am single. I am a small business owner. I am an author. I am strong. I am living my best life. I am the heroine of my life, and you should be too.
A few months back, my amazingly gorgeous, successful and powerful NYC girlfriends and I were circulating emails, as we often do. (I don’t have a boss, so what do I care? Bonus #72 to being an independent contractor ladies: Be your own boss.) So a friend of mine passed along this article titled, “Here’s Why You’re not Married.” I skimmed the email, as I remembered I just landed in D.C. and was a bit scattered, per usual and I thought, oh, I’ll CC all of my other single besties and forward off this relatable email to them! Superb idea CK!
I later realized the piece read something like this: (from what I remember and please pardon this language, I am simply reiterating what I recall: “Here’s why you’re not married, you’re a bitch, you’re a slut, you’re shallow, you’re selfish….” I mean talk about insulting, offensive and degrading! Not really necessary to read if you’re a smart, successful, I know-what-I-want kind of woman! It continued to nudge in the writer’s past divorces etc etc… Later that day I had a second to read the whole email and thus realized what it was all about, and had irresponsibly passed the article on to my many fabulous and single girlfriends from LA to NY, Hawaii to San Diego. I immediately, (after realizing how vulgar and degrading the draft was) mass emailed the group and apologized for sending a “skimmed” email on behalf of my bad habits. Skimming, yes a bad habit I’ve done with contracts as well, ladies… don’t do that. Total no no.
To finish this mouthful of a story. How can all single women possibly be bitches? Selfish? Sluts? Are you kidding me? My life is completely dedicated to improving others and I can be deemed as selfish? No-effin’-way. Sluts? I have slept happily by myself, with no snoring or obnoxious man-twitching, for months. I do not invite strangers into my home after anight out at some debaucherous bar, nor do I go out to bars to meet men or online date. And I have no problem getting a date if I wanted one. Not every single girl is a “slut.” How about more like a respectful, well-mannered, classy lady, as we should be. That’s what most of us are.
I speak on behalf of the dozens and dozens of beautiful, single, successful women that I’ve met from NY to LA, Miami to Boston, San Fran to Honolulu. There are genius and adoring qualities in each of these women. There’s so much love in most of their hearts. Everyone has a story. Everyone has a reason. And most of us, if in our 30’s, sans rock on our left hand- most of us know our worth. And my goodness do I love all of my girlfriends that are married! This is not a sneer or a scuff towards marriage. Marriage is such a wonderful and beautiful thing and it is, of course, on my wish list of life.
This is merely the voice from a very independent business woman who has grown and developed thru publishing, television and modeling as a single girl, by choice.. and has felt the need to let you know.. it’s okay to be single! Here’s why:
You are Single Because:
- You are Busy: There’s an on-going joke that because I cook and I sometimes resemble an Asian Barbie doll (so I’m told by my stylists) that I must have men knocking down my door. Well, quite the opposite. I work about 15 hours a day everyday including Saturdays and Sundays. Even if I’m out with friends or out for a run or a surf, you better believe I’m still thinking about work. If you’re like me and you run your own small business or you’re an independent contractor, you must understand me here. Work becomes a priority; you support yourself, your business and your future. There is no room for failure or time to waste. There is no man or husband to support me. And if the right man is willing to wait and patiently support you (mentally and physically) he will have to understand where your priorities are at. Some men really hate this. They will feel inferior, intimidated and small. They will not stick around but that just means they just weren’t the one. That’s ok, stay busy. Stay focused. Keep that perseverance in place. As Helen Gurley Brown Says: “I hope I have convinced you / the only thing that separates successful people from the ones who aren’t is the willingness to work very, very hard.” Done and done. Work it girl! HE will come when HE is supposed to. Don’t look, don’t force. Just focus on you. HE will find you when you are out doing all of the things you love.
- You are Looking: Please stop looking. Now here’s my least favorite word: Desperate. ICK! Gross. When my agents relay this word to me (in regards to work) it does indeed make me cringe. They always continue to remind me that it is the very last perception that you want to give off to any client. When you go out at night, when you are out to dinner, when you are away for the weekend, enjoy the company of your friends. Hang out with your gay bestie (he will have plenty of eye-candy for you.) Spend more time with others you love: Your beautiful mother, your best friend, your little puppy, keep busy with the girls on the weekends. Find a place in your heart to love yourself so much, keep yourself so so busy, that you cannot possibly find the time to look. Here’s something I will admit, and I have never shared this; I very much, like other busy NY cats, I will admit that I dilute and numb the pain and the lonely feelings of being single in the city, with work. That’s just reality. And as much as I am not supposed to share these very personal things with an audience; I also very much believe in being real. Please stop looking. They will find you when you are ready. When everything just aligns. Be patient.
- You are a Hermit: I plead the 5th here: I’ve certainly cut down the debaucherous nights of cocktails until 2:30 am, long weekends away to Hollywood or Vegas and I’ve transformed those weekends into staying in to work, relax, exercise, meditate, check-out mentally and find time to re-charge my battery. Be more adventurous and create new opportunities for yourself. Now I don’t get out much anymore in regards to partying and nightlife; however there are certain activities that can attract more bees. If you workout at the gym? Good girl! That’s the place to be on the weekends, not only will he very much about health and wellness, he will prob have that HOT body you’ve been dreaming of. If you’re selective, like I am, this is a hot place to find a hot body. I always met boys out in the water surfing (back in Cali they love beautiful girls out in the water!) and girls, if you live by the surf? Take lessons! Take some local classes to get out and acquire more knowledge: Wine tasting/pairing, cooking classes, beer brewing class (I’m SURE boys will be there!) Join a running group, a soccer team in the area or check out some local cool concerts dropping in your town. Check out the Yankees or the Dodgers and go eat some hot dogs and grab some brewskis with the girls. Travel more. I saw a lot of gorgeous men in Spain and Portugal, and wouldn’t mind getting lost in translation with many of them! You’d be amazed at whom the universe wants to pair you with on a flight. Go take that pup to the dog park and smile at those hotties!:) Just get that butt out more to meet and mingle. Life is about meeting new people, places, friends, experiences and letting all of your inhibitions fall out the window.
- You are Afraid: The most interesting observation I have made as a single girl in LA and NY for the last 4 years is that some of us really just don’t want to be with someone. The pressures of society lead us to believe that we need a man to hold our hand. We need a man to keep us warm at night, or that we should be going out on more hot dates (I’d rather gag-myself than go online to date, sorry guys.) I’m an old fashioned-gal at heart and I believe that the universe/God will bring two counterparts together as they are one. And this is all to happen organically as possible. Sometimes, we are afraid. Falling in love is simply just that. It is very much “falling.” It is no wonder that we are scared. I have had my heart broken to pieces more than I have been in love. And that, my friends, is how the story goes. For most of us women, we tend to paint this perfect picture of the men in our lives. If you are like me, you will choose to only see the light in everyone, leaving us slightly delusional, a bit naive and yes, sometimes painfully heart-broken. With real love you will need not be afraid. For real love (from the few times I’ve experienced it) is unconditional. Love understands, love is patient, and as people begin to merge lives, they will grow together as one. For true love will not break your heart- true love will wash away all of your fears.
- Love is very much like a garden. After seeds are planted, invested in, sown, they are properly nourished with sunshine, nutrients and they begin to flourish. Your garden will need maintenance, care, extra days of water in droughts, excess love and warmth in the coldest seasons and above all, your garden of love will be what you make of it. So don’t be afraid. When you are ready to sow your seeds, when you are ready to take good care of that garden of love, all of your greatest fears will then subside and you’ll just know.
- You are Picky! (And that’s okay! You should be!) Here’s what we all say: “He’s too short! Uck did you see his gut? His breath smelled of cigarettes and horrid coffee. He didn’t even pick up the tab, I mean OMG. His shoes did not match his coat. OMG and he lied about his job. He is 41 and lives with his Mom. He spends all day Facebook stalking and its scaring me. I hear his credit is really bad.” Honey, I have heard them all! And hey girl! It’s totally fabulous and cool! Be picky! As long as you are quite aligned with the person you want to find? It’s all good. He should be all that you’ve ever dreamed for and more! Don’t lower those standards, just simply find a man that will LOVE you to pieces no matter what! Keep in mind, you should be realistic and know, not everyone is going to have the same level of taste or sophistication, so Maybe you CAN look past his geekster hiking boots? I’ve done that! Just take him shopping darling. It’s all good.
Here’s Why its all OKAY!
- You’re Classy: You don’t give it all away. Not on the first date, never on the second and not even on the third. If he wants you, he will wait. If he wants you he will call. If he wants you, you will know. If he wants you, he will chase you! Keep it classy. Sex is hot, so hot. Monogamous sex is so healthy and good sex gets even better with age! Honey, please I know all about great sex and I’m not afraid to talk about it. Just don’t give yourself away like you’re worth a $5 cocktail on Happy Hour. You’re worth a million bucks, so act like it. Stay classy. It’s so okay to make him sweat a little. Make him work for it. If he wants to be with you, he will move mountains to do so. Men love a great challenge.
- You’re Patient: Love is patient, love is kind. Great things come to those who wait. The patience that you possess to wait for the Mister Forever will earn you some major points. Why even waste time on dating someone you wouldn’t want to begin a life with? I’ve never understood that. If I don’t feel it within the first five minutes of meeting him, it’s just not there. This is why I love chemistry. Just like in baking, chemistry is precise. It’s either there or its not. So move along. Earn the patience to bring your positive energy on bringing the right man to you! Be patient. Patience truly is a virtue.
- You’re Beautiful: Above all things, please remember this. YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL. Beauty is something that everyone possesses. Beauty is not physical, beauty is found in the inner depths of your soul. It is found in the eyes, you can feel it in your heart. The best part of beauty and love is that those who truly love you will see all the all the beauty you possess, simply through your heart. He/She will be able to see all that you are. Inner beauty above all, will always outshine and outlast all physical beauty. Feel how beautiful you are! Know that inside that big heart, you have so much love to give. Save that love for the one very special person who will receive and appreciate your love the same way that you appreciate giving it.
- You Know What You Want, and You Deserve That: The most important thing of all! To know what you want in this lifetime, not in the next. Please don’t settle. For seeing your dreams come to fruition almost exactly the way you imagined them to,now that would be the ultimate. That 6’3″, lean, built, tan, dark, green-eyed, bearded, thoughtful, brilliant, creative, fun, perfect fitted jean-wearing, few tattoo, great style, and absolutely charmingly-hilarious feet-sweeper? He does exist. Just know what you want in life. Manifest it, chase it, believe it will all fall into place just as it tis supposed to.
- Now, darling, stop looking around for them to come sweep you off your feet. They will find you when you are out doing all of the things you love.