Ways to spread the love on February 14th
Some people dread Valentine’s Day because they feel that without perfect, romantic love, they are doomed to have a bad day. But February 14th is a day to celebrate all kinds of love – regardless of your relationship status. This holiday is one where even the most staunchly single can fill our hearts by doing what love is made for: giving it away.
Here are some ideas for everyone to give and receive love this Valentine’s Day:
Set yourself up for success
When you were in elementary school, remember how much fun you had decorating your classroom, coloring handmade Valentine’s cards and making a mess with glitter? The expectation of the day was all about trading cards with friends – and eating chocolate!
Laying out simple expectations within your own control sets you up for success. And just like in elementary school, the day will feel cheerful and fun if you give out homemade Valentine cards and tiny sweet treats. Lonely neighbors, kids you know, co-worker friends, your parents, your children: everyone loves to receive a brightly colored card.
So, get creative with your art supplies and spend an afternoon making a mess. Sharing this activity with children or elderly people you know can make it even more rewarding. You’ll be surprised how much fun it is, and how much appreciation you receive in return.
Valentine’s Day is the perfect time to volunteer somewhere that extra love would be most appreciated. A place like a nursing home, a long-term care facility, a hospital floor with sick kids. Choose what would feel most meaningful and personal to you, and set it up before the holiday. By giving back, research shows you’ll benefit mentally and emotionally on the official day of love.
Make the day all about you
This is the perfect holiday to devote a block of time to indulgent self-care. We spend much of our lives and careers worrying about other people’s needs. Take this time to enjoy pampering yourself with your own favorite activities, without consulting anyone else first.
You can put on your favorite music, take a hot bath with a bath bomb, candles and a good book. Or curl up in front of a good movie with takeout in your cozy pajamas. Give yourself a pedicure, indulge in some chocolate for dessert, but most of all relax and enjoy your own company.
Treat your friends
Maybe you have a friend who is special to you and could use some extra love. Make the day all about this beloved friend. Send them flowers, invite them to dinner, surprise them with a massage. Write them a letter detailing the ways their friendship has enriched your life and why you love them. Focusing on letting someone you love know just how much they mean to you is gratifying any day of the year.
Be a secret Cupid
Maybe there’s someone you know who could use some cheering up, but you don’t want them to know you are the one doing the cheering. In that case, be a secret Cupid, and have anonymous gifts and surprises sent to this person.
Maybe you’ll send flowers and chocolates to their work. Or you’ll have musicians serenade them once they’re home in the evening. Whatever it is, you’ll have that satisfied and happy feeling that only comes from giving love away.
Attend a local yoga studio or gym class
Kicking up a good sweat with other non-romantic Valentine’s Day observers is a great way to unwind. Some studios even have special classes for this day of love, with lit candles and soft music. Yoga and meditation can bring a sense of wholeness and peace to your heart if you are feeling particularly lonely on this holiday.
Spend time in a meditative state
Valentine’s Day is the perfect day to take time for your own love-focused meditation. Set up candles and a cozy place to sit and get in a meditative pose. Using deep breathing in and out, begin to focus your breath on love. Love in action, love as a feeling. Recall what it feels like in your body when you feel love. This is good for your spirit as well as your physical heart!
This Valentine Day focus on what you have, not what you don’t have. You have love to give. Give it to those around you, and practice mindful meditation as a way of bringing love to yourself. Try this meditation for Elemental Change, opening your heart to greater happiness, improved relationships and enhanced wellness.