Ways To Practice Self Love On Valentine's Day
Self-love isn't just a buzzword. Kindness, compassion, and caring for your physical and mental well-being are all common themes in loving yourself, which boast real benefits. Valentines day for singles and couples is a holiday all about love, but often, people use the day to focus on the romantic variety of it. But be reminded that one of the messages Valentines day is telling us is self-love. Why is Valentine's day important? You can make Valentine's Day what you want it to be, and loving yourself is an inclusive and beneficial way to celebrate - whether you have a partner or not. Here are some fun things to do valentines day by practicing self love.
Why focus on self-love this Valentine's Day? While pessimism and perfectionism both have significant potential adverse effects, like an increased risk of depression symptoms and poorer physical health, self-love can promote well-being in various ways. It can mean that you're more resilient, less likely to put yourself down, and more likely to seek social connections and habits that are positive for you. Furthermore, compassion for oneself is linked to increased motivation and productivity, a reduced likelihood of depression symptoms, and lower physical and mental markers of stress.
Want to reap the benefits? Here are some ways to practice self-love this year.
Think About How An Ideal Partner Would Treat You - Then, Do It For Yourself
Whether partnered or single, ask yourself, "How can I be the best companion for myself?" You will remain a constant no matter who else is in your life.
There are a lot of things we can't control in the world. As the saying goes, sometimes we are our own worst critics. At times, you might say things to yourself that you wouldn't say to anyone else you love. This is one way to be objective in how you treat yourself and, if needed, modify it. When you feel down about yourself, ask how you would react to a partner who felt that way. When you want to give yourself love, think about what you'd want a partner to do.
On Valentine's Day, take it a step further. If you were your own romantic partner, how would you plan the best Valentine's Day possible for yourself? What will make you feel loved, cared for, and refreshed? A bath with candles, your favorite meal, a FaceTime date with your best friend, a movie night, dancing to your favorite music? Whatever the answer is, plan the perfect Valentine's Day for yourself.
Include A Friend
Not everyone will be able to do this particular one, and that could be true for various reasons. You may be social distancing due to the pandemic or a Covid exposure, or you may not have a friend who is available or lives close enough, etc. However, maybe you have a friend who is single or who doesn't have Valentine's Day plans who you could spend the day with.
If this is the case, call or text and ask if they want to celebrate Valentine's Day with you. It could be on a day close to, but not on, Valentine's Day if that better accommodates your schedule. If you prefer not to be alone, this is a great solution, and it's actually a relatively common practice. Some celebrate with their friends and call it "Palentine's Day" or “Galentine’s Day.” If in-person hangouts aren't an option, consider video chat.
You can exchange presents, have a sleepover, play video games, watch a movie, order takeout, or hang out with a friend and make memories. Who knows? It could be your most special Valentine's Day yet.
Write Yourself A Letter
Writing a love letter to yourself is an excellent way to employ self-care. Many people grew up to believe that speaking about or even to themselves positively was vain or selfish. This could be why it's such a challenge for some to shift toward self-love. It's okay if it feels like a slightly uncomfortable task at first; push yourself to write a genuine love letter and try to write it to yourself the way you'd pen one for someone else, like a significant other. Aside from that, you can also read how to love yourself quotes online to get motivated on practicing self-love.
Make Yourself A Care Package For Later
Knowing how to take care of yourself is necessary. We often want to console those we love, and no human being is immune to having an off day. A great way to practice self-love is to extend that comfort to your future self.
On Valentine's Day, set time aside to make yourself a self love care package for when life gets rough. It can include a game or activity book, small objects that will make you smile, a list of self love affirmations, a self love note to yourself, or something you can use to pamper yourself.
Know That Your Activities Don't Have To Be Centered On Valentine’s Day
Valentine's Day is a challenging day for some people. Although some will get themselves Valentine’s Day candy or buy themselves a nice meal, there are also people for whom even thinking about these things may hit a sore spot.
Identifying your own needs and respecting them is often an essential segment of self-love. It's okay to shift your focus away from the holiday if you need to and feel that that's best.
Consider Your Love Languages
What if you want to do one of the things on this list but just aren't sure which one? Alternatively, what if you have a limited amount of time to celebrate Valentine's Day? It may help to take your love languages into account:
- Physical Touch: Give yourself a hug (it's good for you) and a great way to show self love!
- Acts Of Service: Do something for yourself that you'll appreciate later on, like household chores. That way, you can use the day or night to relax and do what you actually want to do.
- Words Of Affirmation: Write a list of things you like about yourself as self-affirmations and use positive affirmations, or listen to a self-love meditation that invites you to think positive thoughts about yourself.
- Gift-Giving: Buy yourself a small gift. This could be flowers, your favorite Valentine's Day candy, a stuffed animal, or anything else that makes you smile and brings authentic joy.
- Quality Time: Spend the day or night on something you truly adore and value. If you adore art but rarely make time for it, set time aside to get creative for some self love.
Often, when we talk about love languages, we think about how other people can love us but don't realize that we can also use them for the purpose of showing self-love. It can be an exercise in self-exploration and self-care to explore how to choose love for yourself and how you can employ self-love through your love languages. Though it's fun for Valentine's Day, you can do this any day of the year, especially if there's a day when you need extra TLC and aren't sure how to give it to yourself.
Bonus Valentine's Day activity: If you don't know your primary love languages, you can take the quiz at https://www.5lovelanguages.com/.
What If Self-Love Doesn't Come Easily?
Self-love isn't always easy, especially when you first try to reward yourself.
The best way to strengthen self-love is to practice it all year. If you're just getting serious about caring for yourself and giving yourself the care and respect that you deserve, be gentle with yourself.
It's also not something you have to do alone. Many things can affect the way we treat ourselves, the way we feel about ourselves, our thought patterns, and so on, and professional help may be beneficial in getting to a better place. A therapist can help you break old, deep-rooted routines and live a life that nurtures your authenticity, self-care, self-compassion, and self-love.
Get Support From A Therapist
For many, online therapy is an easy and reliable solution. Typically, matches are made within 24 hours but can take a few days if you don’t feel they are right for you. Regain offers counseling options for those seeking individual therapy as well as those who desire couple's therapy. You can start or stop therapy at any time, and there are multiple plans to choose from. You deserve self-love and satisfaction no matter where you're at in life, and the experts at Regain are here to help. Read below for reviews of Regain therapists from people experiencing similar issues.
“Lakesha was absolutely amazing! She helped me find myself and realize my self worth in such a short period! I highly recommend her services she is FRESH and has amazing insight!” https://www.regain.us/lakesha-hayes/
“My experience with Priscilla has been immensely helpful in better understanding myself and providing me with the tools to see my life and relationships with more clarity and compassion.” https://www.regain.us/priscilla-wilson/
If you're not where you want to be with self-love, you can get there. Use self-love year-round to attain the benefits, and don't hesitate to ask for a helping hand. Valentine’s Day can be an excellent opportunity to practice showing yourself some self-love and kindness.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Why is self-love difficult?
Loving yourself can be difficult for so many reasons. Many individuals find it hard to do this so please know that you are not alone. This is a life-long journey, and the way in which you care for yourself can change over time based on your wants and needs.
If you find this practice difficult and have no idea where to start, don't worry! Find moments throughout your day, week, month, or even year when you feel truly taken care of and nourished. Whether that be through watching your favorite movie, treating yourself to a nourishing meal, spending time alone or with a friend, or going for a hike or walk in nature. Observing and creating awareness around the moments and actions you take that make you feel full and nourished is one big step towards learning how to care for yourself.
Also know that it can take time and can change. What may make you feel nourished and cared for in your 20's may be completely different when you're in your 40's. As humans we evolve and change over time, so allow the ways in which you care for yourself also.
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