Valentine’s Day is a wonderful day of the year - a day to celebrate our loved ones and our closest connections. Sometimes though, we get caught up in the anxiety of not having a partner, or the overwhelming amount of chocolate, roses and puppies dominating our newsfeeds. Sometimes even when we DO have a partner, we feel pressure to make things “perfect”, which only causes more stress.
Having suffered from relationship anxiety in the past (which I will write more about one day), I know what it’s like to feel more than a little uneasy on a day like today. The expectation to feel a certain way often had the opposite effect on me: if I didn’t feel particularly in love on Valentine’s Day, I would think there was something wrong with me, my partner, and/or the relationship. It wasn’t until I learned to be compassionate with myself and be okay with whatever I was feeling, that the feelings (ironically) came back.
In light of that experience, I want to share a few ways that you can love and honour yourself this Valentine’s Day - whether you have a romantic partner in your life or not!
1. Make a gratitude list
Write down at least 10 things you love about yourself. It could be something physical, like your body and your health, or some of your favourite qualities: your love of adventure, your compassion for others, or your wicked snowboarding skills.
2. Treat yourself
Go for a mani-pedi with a girlfriend, or do something else you don’t often indulge in. You deserve some self-care, no matter who is footing the bill!
3. Take a bubble bath
Speaking of self-care, this is an awesome way to calm your nervous system for free. Light a few candles, pour a glass of wine, and put on your favourite playlist. Pure. Bliss.
4. Write yourself a love letter
I’m serious. Sit down and write to yourself the way you would write to a friend or partner. What do you love about yourself? What are you grateful for? What are your hopes and dreams? Put it all on paper and maybe revisit it next year to see what has changed and what you manifested into your life!
5. Buy yourself a gift
Whether it’s freshly cut flowers, a book, or a new mug for your coffee, indulge in something small for yourself. It’s a great way to feel special and loved on this day.
6. Take yourself on a dinner date
I was always petrified of eating out alone. But after I was forced to do so on a business trip, I learned to love it. I now do this about once a month - I take myself out for a meal (usually sushi) and just sit and people watch. It’s an awesome habit to start and it will deepen your connection to yourself.
7. Say “I love you”
I know this is daunting, but it can be so rewarding. Say “I love you” to yourself in the mirror. What comes up? Discomfort? That’s okay. Make this a daily practice and see how things change in your life. You deserve your own love, and believe me when I say, it will deepen your capacity to love those around your immensely.
8. Make these chocolate covered strawberries!
They’re super quick and easy, and can be enjoyed alone or with your loved ones.
Happy Valentine’s Day!