There seems to be a lot of expectations about Valentine’s Day. It can feel like a day full of couples and romantic love, so if you’re single, suddenly your singleness feels more pronounced than ever. When I was divorced, I decided that Valentine’s Day didn’t have to be a day about romantic relationships, it could be a day that simply celebrates love. Love for myself, love for my kids, my friends, neighbors, etc. It can be a day or week to enjoy being surrounded by color and fun during the drab cold days of February. It was a paradigm shift for me. No longer did I need to feel sorry for myself because I had nobody to love me, because in reality, I did! I didn’t need romantic love to feel loved.
Here’s 7 ideas on how to embrace Valentine’s Day even when you are single:
1. Brighten up your home. If you like flowers, buy yourself your favorite flowers and put them in a pretty vase. If you like Valentine’s decorations, put some up and enjoy the fun of the season.
2. Plan a fun evening out alone. You could go to a bookstore and enjoy browsing and buy a book you’ve been dying to read. Enjoy a hot drink and read for awhile in the bookstore cafe. Or go shopping for some new clothes. Or bring home your favorite take-out and watch a movie.
3. Get out with friends and do something fun. Go out to a movie, dinner, bowling, sledding, ice skating, whatever you like to do.
4. Throw a mid-winter party and invite some friends or extended family over. It doesn’t even have to be Valentine themed. Just have fun playing games, indulging on treats, and sharing in fun and laughter.
5. If you have kids, make this a special day for them. You could have heart pancakes for breakfast (or dinner!). Put together a little goodie bag for them with a few treats and a small gift like a new bracelet and earrings, or a small stuffed animal.
6. Do a gift exchange with your single friends. Draw out names and buy each other little gifts, then get together for some fun and exchange presents.
7. Share the love. Volunteer at a local community shelter or other organization. For ideas, check out https://www.volunteermatch.org/, http://www.handsonnetwork.org/or http://www.createthegood.org/. It’s a proven fact that serving others and looking outside ourselves is a happiness booster.