As we approach the looming holiday of love on February 14th, there are so many emotions that can arise. Naturally, if you’re single and in search of love, Valentine’s Day can feel like an impending bad day, filled with bouts of sadness, loneliness or exclusion, but it doesn’t have to be that way.
Sure, February may be chock full of red and pink hearts as far as the eye can see and scream, “be mine,” at every turn, but holidays are a time to be celebrated and find joy, so don’t let the season of love pass you without embracing all that it can be in your life. Valentine’s Day is a time to celebrate love, no matter what form that may take for you at the current moment. Embrace the life season you are in and find ways to spread and share love with yourself and others.
SELF-CARE ISN’T SELFISH
As women, we’ve heard about the importance of self-care in countless ways throughout our lives. Due to the onset of the pandemic, self-care has become a trending topic that seems to be making its mark on the world. Although self-care is essential to self-growth and an overall healthy feeling of self-love, it can be overused and cliche. Self-care is more than just spa days and sheet masks, though.
Self-care is about preserving your peace, creating space in your life for those that you see as part of your future and living out your wildest dreams and aspirations unapologetically. On holidays, or in times where we feel less-than, self-care is extra important. As much as you’ve heard about the importance of a self-care routine in your life, lean into it more as a way to live versus a regimented plan that tells you that you need to do X,Y or Z to be happy and healthy.
Self-care is a mindset that should be part of who you are, so, on Valentine’s Day, embrace the idea of self-care by taking care of your mental and emotional health. And remember, Valentine’s Day is only one day out of the year, so, don’t stress its arrival too much. It will pass as quickly as it approaches.
SINGLE MOMS AND SELF-CARE
Finding time for self-care is often hard to do given the busy lives so many of us lead, even during a pandemic. Self-care as a single mother can be especially challenging. Often, you are navigating the world alone while putting your child’s needs above your own. Although this idea is natural and will play out most of the time, you need to find some time to take care of you. As the saying goes, you can’t pour from an empty glass.
If you’re a single mom, or even if you’re not, here are some ways to treat yourself to some self-care on occasion:
- Find a yoga video you can do at home and enjoy during your child’s naptime or school day.
- Try a new recipe just for yourself.
- Pick up a book and lose yourself in the story line. Indulge in 30-60 minutes of reading before bed each night.
- Write out daily goals and mantras to keep yourself motivated and centered.
- Spend time outdoors a few times a week.
CELEBRATE YOU THIS VALENTINE’S DAY
This year, rewrite the script on what Valentine’s Day is in your life. Tune out the outside noise and turn inward to find ways to celebrate all that you’ve done, all that you are and all the goals you have in store for 2021. As women, we can get caught up in the hype of the holidays. Don’t let the over-the-top decorations, ads, sweet nothings or social media posts from others destroy your inner peace. Block out the noise and take a mental break from social media to focus on your own happiness.
My expert tips on how to celebrate YOU this Valentine’s Day include:
- Pencil in a girl’s trip – Get your single friends together and plan a trip or dinner together on Valentine’s Day to celebrate one another and let loose. With the pandemic in full swing, you may consider doing something virtually, like a sip and chat.
- Bask in a spa day – Treat yourself to the works, manicure, pedicure, haircut, massage and facial and spend your entire day indulging in you so you can spend your night feeling relaxed and rejuvenated.
- Take yourself out on a date –Go to your favorite restaurant and enjoy a special meal, with dessert and drinks included. If you want to stay more low-key, especially due to COVID-19, order from your favorite restaurant and indulge at home. While you’re enjoying the food and drink, take out a journal and jot down 10 things you love about yourself. Celebrating you and putting it down on paper is an instant mood booster.
- Splurge on a new wardrobe piece – Whether you’re into clothes or jewelry, go shopping and treat yourself to something that celebrates you. Another fun idea would be to buy yourself flowers. Nothing freshens up your space and brings joy like a beautiful bouquet.
- Get some extra ZZZ’s – Sleep is a glorious thing and often underrated. Use the day to sleep in and enjoy time at home.
- Connect with a friend who adores you – There is nothing more fun than a night out with your best friend. Plan ahead so you have a Valentine’s event to look forward to. Spend a few hours doing something you both love; anything from a hike, to a socially distanced walk to drinks and dinner. Connections can happen virtually too, so, if you want to maintain social distancing meet up with one another on a video chat and indulge in much needed girl talk.
- Dress for the occasion – Whether you’re going out or staying in, find a cute outfit that fits the Valentine’s mood. From adorable heart pajama sets to a sexy red dress for dinner out, there are endless options to choose from.
- Enjoy a movie marathon – There may be no better way to pass the time than by enjoying your favorite movies or TV series. Spend the day snacking on some delicious treats and get lost in the magic of cinematography.
WAYS TO SPREAD LOVE TO OTHERS IN YOUR LIFE
If you love the idea of self-indulgence this Valentine’s Day but would like to be more social or show others how much you care, there are ways to find happiness while spreading love to others.
Here are some great ideas to spread love this Valentine’s Day:
- Book a couple’s massage – at a local spa and invite your single friend to safely join you.
- Have a virtual party for your single friends – Send each other surprises via mail and share in the moment together virtually, near or far. Some fun gifting ideas include: chocolates, flowers, fun trivia games that you can play together over video chat or a surprise dessert from their favorite local spot delivered via UberEats or DoorDash.
- Send flowers to others – Whether it’s your parents, family members or other single friends, flowers are sure to put a smile on the face of the recipient as well as you. The gift of giving never disappoints.
- Send a text to those you love – Tell your family and friends how much you love and appreciate them on Valentine’s Day. A simple text (or phone call) can go a long way.
Being single on Valentine’s Day is not a reason to avoid the holiday all together. Celebrating love can (and should!) happen in all seasons of your life. Embrace the sentiment of Valentine’s Day without feeling weighed down by the idea that you need a partner to enjoy it. Celebrate yourself and others this Valentine’s Day and the love of the holiday will shine through.
Finding love can seem overwhelming. Celebrating love as a single woman over 40 can feel consuming. Self-care will lead to more confidence which will help you to attract a great guy. When you take care of yourself you have higher standards and are able to ask for what you need without fear. When you care about yourself, you are no longer willing to let men treat you poorly.