Valentine’s day is one of my favorite holidays. It has nothing to do with gifts or flowers or chocolates. It’s just a time where love fills the air for everyone. The simple idea of love brings people happiness, and happiness is infectious. It spreads like wildfire and frankly – this world needs more love. And equally important is self-love on Valentine’s day.
valentine’s isn’t just for couples
It has been said before so me saying it again won’t carry much weight, but I truly believe that Valentine’s Day shouldn’t be simply about being in a romantic relationship. Obviously, that is wonderful and deserves to be celebrated – but it shouldn’t be the end-all, be-all to Valentine’s.
All relationships deserve to be celebrated – your relationship with your partner, your children, your best friend, your dog, your colleagues, your employees, and importantly – YOURSELF.
don’t forget to show yourself some love
The thing that gets me most on Valentine’s isn’t that people get sucked up in not having a partner, but rather not taking a moment to show themselves some love. We often spend so much time on everyone else, which is an admirable quality to have. However, we end up putting ourselves last and that’s simply not sustainable.
The topic of self-care has gained in popularity over the past months and there are many perspectives on it. While I believe and agree that self-care isn’t all about salt baths and chocolate cake, I also believe that sometimes a salt bath and chocolate cake is just damn good for your soul. Wanting a little indulgent TLC is nothing to be ashamed of.
Creating a life you don’t need to escape from is important. Practicing daily self-care habits is important. And spending 2 hours in your bathroom with a bottle of wine, some essential oil infused salts, and chocolate is also important.
So in the midst of loving all your people this Valentine’s – here are 5 ways that I show a little love to myself.
1. take a yoga class
Maybe yoga isn’t your thing. That’s okay. The point here is bigger than simply doing some yoga.
I hate exercising. As in, I will look for any excuse to get out of it…
I’m tired, I’m too full, I didn’t get to eat, I don’t have time to wash my hair after, my toe hurts. The list can go on and on.
However, about 10 years ago I started taking a yoga class and really fell in love with it. I don’t recall what made me go to the class, but I remember it being so hard, almost passing out, and feeling like I was going to vomit after.
But I loved it. I left feeling so accomplished, challenged, and refreshed.
It was an hour out of my week where I was in a quiet room where no one knew a single thing about me. It required me to be in the moment and just be. Most importantly – it had nothing to do with fitness, it was all mental.
Now, with a life much busier and demanding than the life I led 10 years ago – I find such sweet relief in that weekly(ish) yoga class. It truly fills my cup and brings me back to center.
Find something to do regularly that is outside of your norm that fills you up. Maybe it is yoga, a calligraphy class, or sitting at a coffee shop alone to read. Whatever it is, find your “yoga class” and commit to it.
2. buy (or send) yourself flowers
Fresh flowers simply bring me joy and I love love love getting surprise flowers sent to me. I am so blessed to have a husband who sends me “just because” flowers as well as best friends who surprise me with sweet bouquets.
But, the idea that they must be gifted to you is insanity. I’m no damsel-in-distress and I can buy my own flowers, thank you very much.
Flowers provide a freshness to our environment that is good for the soul. Their bright colors encourage happy thoughts, their aroma evokes feelings of love, and they just look really pretty.
I’ve found that it makes me smile when I keep a simple bouquet of fresh flowers on my table. I know they won’t last long, but that’s okay because a lot of things in life don’t last long. But while they are around, they serve a really good purpose.
3. listen to a podcast
If you’ve not gotten into podcasts yet – you need to. They are truly life-giving and one of the best parts of my day.
When podcasts were suggested to me, I wrinkled my nose at the thought. My commute to work was 45 minutes where I could zone out, listen to whatever music I wanted, drink my coffee and not think. I didn’t want to turn on a podcast and lose all of that.
But, I tried it anyways. And I have to tell you, it was so good. It allowed me to set my focus and intentions for the day, provide myself some personal development without taking away from another obligation, and it exercised my mind in new ways.
I love listening to personal development and business podcasts, but there is truly a podcast for everyone. Take some time where you’re already listening to music and swap it for a podcast.
4. write down your goals and ambitions
I truly believe in the power of the written word. And I believe in the psychology of writing down what we desire to accomplish in our life. There are many reasons why you should create goals, continually evaluate your goals, and always write them down.
My personality type (which I talk about here) is one that is driven by lists. However, anytime I need a moment to regroup – even if I only have 60 seconds to spare – I grab a pen and write. While this may not speak to your personality – I encourage you to try it.
It might be a quick priority list, it might be a reminder of my purpose, a goal I want to achieve, or a couple of positive affirmations. Regardless, I write them down.
Doing this allows me to refocus on what is important, let go of what is holding me back, and set my intentions in a more positive and meaningful way. I find myself happier, more relaxed, and more productive.
5. don’t be afraid to pamper yourself
Pampering can mean a lot of things and it doesn’t have to be over the top, expensive, or complicated. The theory is simple – when we feel good, we do good. And sometimes a little pampering just makes us feel really freakin’ good.
For me, if I can find one night out of the week to soak in a boiling hot, essential oil infused bubble bath – I am good. I feel more confident and relaxed because I was able to tuck away and recharge.
We all have our insecurities, but I’ve found that when I take some time to love myself physically, I feel less burdened by the things I dislike and more empowered by the things I love about myself.
Quick and easy pampering ideas can be a bubble bath, a DIY manicure, lounging in your robe with a face mask, getting a massage, or having your hair done. Enjoying regular self-indulgence is nothing to be ashamed of. Find something that makes you feel good, and do it.
love isn’t just for valentine’s day
Beauty and wellness truly starts from within and it’s just as much about the mind as it is the body. We should be nurturing ourselves and our loved ones continually. There should be no guilt involved – despite the ways we decide to show our love.
The more you give, to yourself and others, the more you get. So go ahead and give freely. Not just around Valentine’s Day, but everyday.
What is your favorite act of self-love?
Let me know in the comments section – I’d love to hear from you!