Valentine’s Day & Taking Care of You

candy-hearts

The pink hearts are littered across the grocery stores, the roses are red as ever and every billboard, magazine and commercial you hear is celebrating ‘your love’ through four low payments of $59.99. It’s clearly Valentine’s Day and whether you’re coupled up or spending the day solo, it’s time to take a check on your mental health and practice some self-care on the world’s most ‘romantic’ day.

Valentine’s Day can bring up negative feelings both financially and personally regardless of whether you’re single or coupled up. For those in relationships, there is a constant pressure to link the amount of money spent on Valentine’s Day as proof of how much you care. Social media feeds into the love day frenzy with posts from friends and family showing off the romantic gestures from their significant others. V-Day almost becomes a competition with social media based on the number of likes and comments a post receives. Even for couples who are unhappy, Valentine’s Day can serve as a Band-Aid solution full of chocolates and roses as a way to avoid their underlying relationship issue.

Valentine’s Day can be extremely depressing for single women leaving them with a pressure to couple up and find ‘the one’. Often this leaves them feeling even more isolated. For those that are unattached, Valentine’s Day often serves as a reminder that they are alone. You see all your friends posting about their love and everyone at work seems to get roses and chocolates from their partners, it can be isolating. Those who are single have coined it ‘Singles Awareness Day’ (S.A.D.) and even the name reflects what many are feeling. It can lead to questionable choices like inviting that not-so-good-for-you ex out to dinner, or a frantic search for a date on the day to avoid feeling alone.

While this Hallmark holiday may seem unavoidable, instead of feeling alone or unappreciated this Valentine’s Day take some time for you. Regardless of whether you’re coupled up or flying solo, we all deserve some extra love. YW’s counselling manager, Shelly Qualtieri, provided five tips to stay positive over Valentine’s Day:

  1. Get active – go for a walk or run, hit the gym, pool or yoga studio
  2. Spend time with those that you love – this does not have to be a partner- it can be a friend, family member, peer, or pet!
  3. Spend a few moments marvelling at the benefits of being single and spending time with amazing you
  4. Give to someone else – a random act of kindness always feels good
  5. Treat yourself, we all deserve it

Taking care of yourself is so important especially during times of stress or when you’re feeling overwhelmed as some may be on Valentine’s Day. Self-care is one of the best ways we can maintain our physical, mental and emotional health which enables us to be the best versions of ourselves. Next time you’re feeling a little overwhelmed or needing a little ‘me time’ keep these tips in mind and remember that we all need a break sometimes.