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Six Ways to Be Your Own Valentine

Dateless on February 14th? Why not be your own valentine this year? Instead of simple scoffing at the day — “It’s just giant Hallmark commercial” — consider carving out some intentional “you” time while your coupled friends are paying for overpriced steak at a crowded restaurant. (Okay, some cynicism about the day is permitted.)

Be your own valentine: Stay In

Celebrating Valentine’s Day solo means it’s all about you. Change into your pajamas and opt to spend the evening in bed with a favorite novel. Or order your favorite comfort food — no need to choose something sophisticated to impress a date — and watch that movie you’ve been dying to watch on Netflix. Have a mini staycation for one and enjoy the break from your daily hustle and bustle. Maybe even turn off your phone.

Be your own valentine: Invite Others In

Dinner party, anyone? The best tables in town are booked, the movie theaters are packed, and the city is painted a little too pink and red for your liking. Why not invite your closest single pals over for dinner and drinks? Don’t make it a bitter, anti-valentine affair; instead, celebrate friendship with good food and laughter. By hosting the intimate party, you’ll get lost in the details of caring for others and your date-free status will suddenly seem quite inconsequential.

Be your own valentine: Love Someone

Continuing the theme of focusing on others, remember that just because you’re single doesn’t mean you’re alone. Write a letter of appreciation to an unsung hero in your life. Call your mom. Volunteer to babysit your best friend’s little ones. Donate money to charity. Drop off groceries at your local food bank. Take advantage of the “love is in the air” atmosphere and be intentional about making the people around you feel loved. Loving others does wonders for the soul.

Be your own valentine: Love Yourself

Make Valentine’s Day that day you finally pamper yourself. Indulge in the romantic-comedy cliché of a bubble bath by candlelight. Give yourself a pedicure. Buy a new shade of lipstick. Book a massage. Buy yourself flowers. Challenge the notion that roses and romance are only for those with significant others, and treat yourself to the little things that make you feel special — because you are.
Be your own valentine: Challenge Yourself

If you’re solo for the evening, take a look at your goals — or make some new ones — and challenge yourself to tackle a new project or learn a new skill in the coming months. Look at those DIY blogs you’ve bookmarked and adopt a new project. Use your night in to attempt a tricky new recipe. Feel empowered by all the possibilities and opportunities before you and take life by the reins a little. Learning can be invigorating.

Be your own valentine: Reflect and Relax

Delight in the fact that you have nothing special to do on the 14th. Go to bed early and catch up on some quality Z’s. Before your head hits the pillow, take a moment or two to reflect on life’s big and little blessings. You don’t need a date to have a great life. Say a prayer of thanks — or transcribe your reflections in a journal — and drift away into contented slumber.