370: Savoring the Many Benefits of Being Single at Heart, my talk with author Dr. Bella DePaulo
Wednesday December 6, 2023

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Joining me on the podcast today is a guest who has courageously chosen to share that she thoroughly and unapologetically savors living a single life. The leading expert on single living, Dr. Bella DePaulo dispels the myths that pervade modern-day (and historic) cultures around the world when it comes to being single by looking at the research that is often cherry-picked and misleading as it speaks to in what type of relationship status one finds the most happiness. But most importantly, in her new book that was just released yesterday December 5th (2023), Single at Heart: The Power, Freedom, and Heart-Filling Joy of Single Life, she focuses on an abundance of findings that reveal the many benefits of living single. From improved health to deeper life satisfaction as we age.

Thankfully, so much of what is portrayed in media about single life – films, books, television, pretty much everywhere – is not an accurate depiction of where and how happiness is found. By no means is Single at Heart an anti-marriage or anti-couple book, but rather a book that reveals that those of us who have chosen to be single, who find it far more fulfilling than being in a traditional couple, need only trust our inner compass to continue to choose the life that brings us fulfillment. As she points out, the world would be far more peaceful and content if we would trust what we know to be true of ourselves – those who wish to be in a couple would find people who truly wanted to be in a couple, and those who savored their single life would not feel forced to choose a life that was not nourishing.

Tune in to today’s conversation where we will talk about the priority and value of freedom as well as benefits of solitude for the Single at Heart, and also speak to how those who are widows/widowers, as well as divorcees, can step into a new chapter of revelation about where and how joy can be cultivated. Dr. DePaulo discusses the importance of nurturing The Ones rather than just The One and reminds us that courageously saying we love our single life is what is needed to change the view that the culture errantly holds on to.

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An excerpt from Single at Heart


Read more from Dr. Bella DePaulo

Take a look at the trailer for her book, Single at Heart below:

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Episode 355

11 thoughts on “370: Savoring the Many Benefits of Being Single at Heart, my talk with author Dr. Bella DePaulo

  1. Thank you Shannon and Dr. DePaulo for such an important and enlightening conversation. It truly is time for singleness to be seen as a legitimate life choice. Not everyone wants their life to gravitate around a spouse. And alone doesn’t mean lonely.

  2. Sincere thanks to both you & Dr. DePaulo for this, Shannon. Even though I’m happily “coupled”, I’ve spent my life pushing against society’s pressures in other areas — from the seemingly mundane (a preference for rough-housing with the boys to playing with dolls) through the significant (a career in what is supposedly a “man’s field”) to the life-defining (the conscious choice to stay child-free) — & have found the entire issue of how women are expected to conform to someone else’s idea of what will make us happy utterly infuriating. I celebrate every woman who has made her own life choices & stood firm against the voices telling her what a terrible mistake she’s making by not dutifully following the path we’re told to take. The idea that a woman needs to be half of a pair to be her best — & happiest — self is just more of the same nonsense & I delight in Dr. DePaulo’s take on it.

    1. Susanne, I DEEPLY appreciated your comment. Your insights, experience and life choices, thank you for sharing each of them and revealing a truth that resides at the heart of so much of why this book resonated with me: to honor what we know to be true about ourselves and become aware that anyone outside of us cannot “know better”. However, the doubt that this conflict often creates is what breaks my heart because often that is what turns us away from ourselves, and in such instances, as you said, especially more prevalent for women, the world misses out on amazing and beautiful gifts they have within them if only they would be nurtured to share them and bring them forth.

      Through this conversation with Dr. DePaulo, the truth she shares through her research and examination of past research will hopefully provide encouragement to trust ourselves whatever our “At Heart” calling may be.

      Thank you again for sharing your life journey with us. By reading your voice, the strength and joy in the life you have consciously cultivated is inspiring.

  3. WOW, I nodded in agreement and laughed out loud so many times listening to this conversation. Thank you Shannon and Dr DePaulo can’t wait to read this book, I have already ordered it. The discussion about Dr DePaulo’s Mum being ‘worried’ about her because she was single, rang so true for me. My parents both deceased had a horrendous marriage. But they both expressed their similar concerns when I was not in a relationship. I have lived an amazing life, had had a successful 47 year career, been financially independent since 18. But as Dr DePaulo said, have had strangers ponder how could I still not be married. Add to that I made a conscious decision that I did not want children. That was put down to being too selfish, for me I never felt that mothering pull. I love my life, have had little to no regrets on my decisions snd choices. But still know that people think I am not complete. But that is their view not mine. I hope many people read this book, especially people that are questioning their being single and others who wrongly judge those who are single as lacking Thanks so much

    1. Josanne,

      Thank you for sharing ALL that you have! I am so grateful that you are sharing what no doubt many others know to be true as well and knowing this truth helps to not be cowed by ignorant others who ‘mean well’ in what they say regarding someone else’s life choices that do not resemble their own. I so enjoy reading the strength and joy of life in your words. Thank you very much for tuning in. I feel fortunate to have been able to have Dr. Depaulo on the show.

  4. Dear Shannon, a bit later listening this but wow what an incredible episode. Feeling very seen and having someone such as a respected Dr Depaulo sharing her research and experience was content I didn’t even know I needed. The book is ordered and will come at the start of the new year cant wait to read it. Thank you Shannon for sourcing and making available to your listeners such wonderful guests.

    1. Pauline, thank you for listening to this episode. I feel most fortunate to had the opportunity to have Dr. DePaulo as a guest on the show. I am so happy read this episode resonated deeply for you. The book is something I am so very grateful Bella wrote and shared all that she discovered. As we repeatedly said in the episode, finally validation. And while we always knew intrinsically this validation because we know ourselves, hearing from Dr. DePaulo brings even more. I think you will enjoy the book quite a lot. Thank you again for your comment. 😌

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