Are you one of those people that breaks out in hives before Valentine’s Day? Or maybe you don’t exactly hate the holiday, but you wouldn’t mind if you never saw a red paper heart again? Let’s face it, there’s just no way to get away from the message: diamonds … flowers … chocolates … let the pressure begin!
I’m not actually saying that Valentine’s Day is an evil conspiracy created by retailers (even though some might argue that’s exactly what it is), but I do understand why it can be a daunting day for many. If you’re in a loving and committed relationship, it can feel like a forced event. If you’re single, it can feel a bit depressing. And if, heaven forbid, you spend the big day alone, well it’s easy to feel like a loser.
But it can also be a day to look forward to and actually enjoy. So I challenge you to think of February 14 as a genuine opportunity to be creative, practice self-love (no matter your relationship status), and enjoy the art of giving: to others and to yourself. Are you ready? Consider these awesome (and very loving) options:
Send a real love letter.
Get away from your laptop and hand-write loving notes to a friend, a family member, or yourself – it doesn’t have to be to a romantic partner. Say what’s in your heart, and then mail it – with a stamp and everything. Need some help? Check out Letters.org or Mother Nature Network.
Make it a movie night.
Explore love in the cinema and gather your dateless friends for a night of movies and wine. Need some ideas? Check out this list from Fandango, and don’t forget the popcorn.
If you don’t have a honey, that doesn’t mean you can’t be a part of a couple and celebrate! Maybe it’s your steadfast movie buddy, a fellow book club enthusiast, or a neighbor that loves beer just as much as you. Reach out to someone who plays a special role in your life, plan an evening out, and enjoy what it is that brings the two of you together. Find more ideas for a friendly Valentine’s Day here.
Focus on someone else.
Do you know a couple who never gets to go out? Maybe it’s because they have young children or are taking care of a dependent parent. Offer to baby- or parent-sit so they can enjoy a special evening – even if it’s just for a couple of hours. Do you know someone new in town, or a friend that is struggling with difficult times? Surprise them with a bottle of wine and chocolates, or a special dinner. When you give to someone else, you’ll get even more in return.
Love roses? Get yourself a dozen! Feeling stressed? Treat yourself to an afternoon at the spa. Take some time off from work and just just go … play! Or pick up your favorite take-out food, and binge-watch something on Netflix. Take a hot bubble bath. Listen to music and revel in how wonderful you are. Indulge yourself in whatever it is that makes you feel happy.
What are your ideas?
What is the most memorable way you have spent this holiday that doesn’t necessarily involve a romantic partner? Please share your ideas or stories by leaving your comments right here! And go ahead … feel the love.