What do you think when you hear the words Valentine’s Day?
If you’re single, you’re probably likely to groan in exasperation.
Valentine’s Day is seemingly designed to make single people feel crap about themselves. Tables for two, hearts and flowers, cheesy cards, and stuffed animals—it’s easy to scorn a day that is so cliché.
But what if I said to you that the greater our contempt for Valentine’s Day, the more we need to look to our own self-acceptance?
According to legend, Valentine’s Day was named after a bishop who was executed on February 14th for secretly marrying couples who were forbidden to do so. He believed in love and freedom, and in inclusion and acceptance of everyone’s free-choice, regardless of social approval.
Coupled or single, we are all worthy of this love and acceptance. And the more love and acceptance we can generate toward ourselves, the more impact we will have on the world – especially in the current social climate.
So here are my top three tips for Doing Single Well on Valentine’s Day:
1. Be kind to yourself. Personally, I’ve found that the saying, `you first have to love yourself before you can love anyone else,` isn’t strictly true. However, the more we invest in self-love, the easier it will be to understand and be comfortable with affection from others.
Think about your favourite self-care activities. These could be: taking a bath, getting a massage or facial, or watching your favourite movies. What about buying yourself some beautiful flowers?
The more we treat ourselves beautifully, the better we’ll feel.
2. Spread the love. We all have people we care about in our lives, whether we are in a romantic relationship or not. However, we often silence our expressions of love and gratitude to these people due to embarrassment at the sentimental action.
With Valentine’s Day being a celebration of love, it’s the perfect time to silence that embarrassment and express to our family, friends, colleagues, or even our dry cleaner, how much we appreciate their presence in our lives.
According to research, the more we allow ourselves to express gratitude, the more happiness and life satisfaction we’ll experience ourselves.
3. Fight the aversion. Have you noticed that voice in your head that says, `this is lame`, or `only losers buy themselves flowers`?
This is the voice of shame and embarrassment. It usually implies that we think the reason that we’re single is that we feel like we’re not worthy of love. There are plenty of real reasons that we might be single, so make yourself a list of them, and go buy those flowers!
What about the voice that says, `I can’t give him a card, he’ll think I’m into him!`, or `she knows I care, it will be awkward to say it`? In actual fact, telling someone you care is a massive compliment! You’re telling them that they have had a positive impact on your life. Who wouldn’t feel good when they hear that?
Singletons shouldn’t have to dread February 14th. In fact, `doing single well` on Valentine’s Day can be easy if you allow yourself to be open to self-love, gratitude and affection from those around you! So, like St. Valentine himself, go ahead and spread that love. Our world desperately needs it right now.
– Gemma Cribb
First posted on www.gemmacribb.com 13/2/17