It seems like as soon as New Year's Day is over, here come the Valentine's Day advertisements. Suddenly everything is red and pink with glitter, and hearts and chocolates abound. It's wonderful if you're in love, but if not, too bad for you. Hmmm....
The first thing to do is view the holiday for what it is: Commerce. There’s no mistaking that Valentine’s Day is big business. From the greeting card industry to floral arrangement providers, there’s money to be made. Valentine’s Day is not a reflection on your inability to find a mate, nor should it upset you because everyone is receiving gifts and you’re not. For women especially, society ties our self-worth to our relationship status. One of the first insults to come out of an angry mouth is, “That’s why she ain’t got no man.” The idea is that if you are not in a relationship, then no one finds you attractive, therefore you must not be desirable at all. Logically, we know that this is not the case.
Second, let’s address the reasons why you are single. Many of them can exist, from having recently broken up with someone, to focusing on career and other interests, to just having not found the right one. Also, some people *gasp* actually want to be alone! They don’t want the hassle of dealing with someone else’s problems and making compromises. This is a perfectly legitimate reason. However, if you are looking for a mate, begin by focusing inward. If you’ve been attracting a string of losers and have a collection of bitter exes, the common denominator is you. Yes, there are bad apples out there, but if you continuously seem to end up with all of them, there is something about you that is sending them your way. Stop and perform a self-assessment. Really look at yourself.... If you have issues such as co-dependency or a history of being abused (or being abusive), then seek mental health treatment. Get yourself together. Once you change your behavior, you will also change the individuals you surround yourself with.
The third thing to do is to redirect some of the energy you expend looking for love into pampering yourself. Instead of moping around feeling lonely, treat yourself the way you would want to be treated. Whether it’s a pedicure, a massage, a new item you’ve always wanted, or a relaxing bath (if you don’t want to spend any money), indulge in the wonder that is you. Long term, start eating better and ramp up that exercise routine. If you’re stressed out, take a vacation, even if it’s just staying at home to get some peace and quiet. Take care of yourself. When you do so, you will radiate with a glow that not only you will see, but others as well.
Finally, don’t hate the day! Years ago I despised Valentine’s Day with a passion, because I rejected the idea of love and all men sucked. And I stuck to it. One year several of us wore all black on Valentine’s Day in protest. Nowadays, whether I’m in a relationship or not, I celebrate. There is love in the air, and the feeling is wonderful. This is one of a few days for many people when, out of a year of feeling unappreciated, they are shown gratitude. Not to mention, Valentine’s Day is not just for lovers; there are many others with whom you can share time or gifts. Perhaps taking a different perspective can be helpful.
So in conclusion, try not to let outside forces influence you into feeling inferior because you are not with someone. Clean up your act so that you can attract the best mate possible. Be your own valentine and treat yourself well, and spread and receive love on Valentine’s Day even if it doesn’t come in the ‘traditional’ form. Being coupled up is a wonderful thing. Being alone can be the same.
~ Shelby Fizer