I get it. Hearts and flowers and candy and love are in the air. If you’re single and don’t want to be, this time of year can be painful and make you feel extra-single. Besides reminding yourself that everyone that’s out on Valentine’s Day isn’t necessarily happy in their relationship, sorry but it’s true, there are plenty of other things that you can do to enjoy the day.
Spend Time with Kids If you have kids yourself, plan to do something fun with them. There’s nothing better than smiling and laughing with kids when you’re feeling down. If you don’t have kids of your own, borrow some. I’m sure you have a friend or a family member who would love to have the day/night off so they can get a break. Then just play. Get coloring books, watch a movie together complete with popcorn and candy, watch KIDZ Bop on YouTube with them and do the dances, sing songs, read books together, and whatever else you can do to be a kid again and have fun.
Make the Day “Pawsitive” I know, so corny! But similar to the idea to spend time with kids, if dogs or cats or another pet is your thing, do that. I’m not an animal person but people who are tell me how much their furry friends light up their lives. Again, if you don’t have your own, borrow someone’s for the day or maybe see if you can volunteer at an animal shelter.
Send Flowers or a Gift to a Fellow Single Friend One year, one of my best friends, who lives out of state, was having a particularly tough year in singlehood so I sent her flowers. It made my whole entire week to hear her reaction. She was so happy and grateful and it truly lifted her spirits. The saying about lifting yourself up by lifting someone else up is so true. It really does work.
Lean Into It Sometimes all you need is a good cry. Watch those movies, sing those songs, get in touch with that part of you that is hurting and grieving about either a broken relationship or the complete lack of one. This may be a reach, but one of the things I’ve learned in therapy is something called exposure therapy where the idea is to expose yourself, in a safe environment, to the thing that’s causing you distress, anxiety, discomfort, etc. I’m thinking by embracing your sadness, you’re acknowledging it and getting those feelings out of your system. Seriously, I just love a good cry. Just be sure to have some things around you that bring you comfort and happiness to offset that. Maybe your favorite food, a funny movie, an upbeat playlist. I find that letting things out and not keeping them bottled up is extremely helpful.
Sweat it Out There are so many fun ways to workout these days, and it’s been proven that a good sweat session releases endorphins and just make you feel good. Take a cycle class, lift some weights, yoga, pole dancing, or one of my favorite places I recently discovered, TRILLFIT. TRILLFIT is Boston’s original hip hop workout party. The music’s great, the instructors are incredible, and what better way to celebrate the holiday than with a fun twerk session. For me, I would make reservations for dinner and/or drinks with a friend and work my way back to the workout. But that’s just me.
A Little Help from your Friends Love takes on many forms, with partnerships being just one of them. Let’s face it, the love of truly great friends is something to celebrate as well. If you’re struggling with being single this year, be honest about it with one or more of your friends, and plan something with them. There are so many different things you can do: Game Night, Spa day, Volunteer, Sleepover, Gift exchange. The possibilities are endless
Get Crafty I don’t know about you, but I love a good craft project. If you’re not on Pinterest, you don’t know what you’re missing, get on there and search for projects to do. They have instructions on how to make anything from jewelry to wall art to finger knitting. I love getting lost in a good craft project.
Love Yourself Yes, you should love yourself in the emotional sense, but right now I’m talking about physically loving yourself. If you’re easily offended by sex talk, you should probably leave now. Happy Valentine’s Day. Hope you have a good one. For everyone else, hear me out. Maybe use the day to start, or update, your toy collection. Yeah it’s easy to go online and buy things there, but checking things out in person is more fun and actually empowering. If you’ve never gone into a store before I know that you may have visions of sketchy dark rooms, so let me help you out. My favorite place is called Good Vibrations in Brookline. It’s bright and welcoming and the people who work there are really helpful. There are also people who throw parties and come to your home if that’s your thing too.
I know that Valentine’s Day is a tough day for some of you, and I hope that if you’re one of them, you find something to do that makes you feel good and not so lonely. It’s cliche to say love yourself first, but sometimes cliches are just facts. Happy Valentine’s Day!