Valentine’s Day can be somewhat polarizing. Some people embrace it as a day to celebrate love and romance and all things chocolate. Others dismiss it as a Hallmark holiday. And if you’re single, like my niece Emmi is right now … well, you might be tempted to hibernate through the whole thing. But don’t! Whether you have an S.O. or not, why not use this day to celebrate your S.S. (Significant Self)? Here are five ways to be your own Valentine.
1. Do something creative.
I made a movie, but you don’t have to be so elaborate. Get in the kitchen and cook, paint a picture, make a scrapbook, do some knitting, take some pictures or write some music. Start a gratitude journal, write yourself a love letter or pour your feelings into a short story. Did you know expressive writing can significantly boost your mood? I bet the same holds true for all forms of self expression, so why not turn all those swirling emotions – good and bad – into something beautifully artistic.
2. Practice some radical self-care.
Use Valentine’s Day as an excuse to go all-out Gwenneth Paltrow and do all the sublimely indulgent things celebs do to take care of themselves – stuff like dry brushing, drinking Golden Milk or oil pulling. I’m treating myself to a haircut and new highlights. Why not schedule yourself a mani and pedi then go see Pretty in Pink, which is back in theaters for its 30th anniversary. And yes, you CAN go to the movies alone and enjoy it. Sometimes you have to be brave to be your own Valentine.
3. Work up a sweat
I’ll never stop preaching about the link between happiness and exercise. WebMD says “it’s an effective but often underused treatment for mild to moderate depression.” It relieves stress and anxiety, boosts self-esteen and improves sleep. All very good things. And on Valentine’s Day, it’s a wonderful way to show your body a little love.
4. Get together with your girls.
Call up your Bungalow 4 for brunch, drinks, a movie or dinner. Yes, some of the girls in your group may have S.O.’s but Valentine’s Day lasts 24 hours, so surely you can carve out a few for a little female bonding. Getting together with your tribe is the perfect way to be your own Valentine.
5. Buy something frivolous.
A little retail therapy never hurts. Send yourself flowers or buy a new lipstick. Pick up a new journal or a new handbag. For some reason I’m all about the bralette these days, so I treated myself to this cutie from Aerie, which may never be seen outside of my house. Still, it’s a treat just for me. What special little something can you give yourself to show you’re fine flying solo or still your own person even if you’re happily attached.
How will you be your own Valentine this Sunday? How will you honor your independence if you’re in a relationship or celebrate your single status if you’re unattached?