Valentine’s Day may be considered the “most romantic day of the year” and is generally focused on showing others how much you love and care for them. But it’s also important not to forget about your relationship with yourself. Whether you are in a relationship or not, try not to forget to take some time for you. Here are five ways to show yourself some love on Valentine’s Day—and everyday.
1. Write yourself a love note or letter.
I write people notes and letters all the time. In a world full of text messages and social media, I think it’s a fun, unexpected way to show someone you’re thinking about them. But I had never thought about writing one to myself. I guess it always seemed odd until I went to college, and we did an exercise where we wrote positive notes to ourselves everyday for a week. Little things, like a sticky note on the mirror that says “you’re about to ace that test you studied so hard for,” or “the outfit you picked out looks amazing on you.” It seems silly, but it actually proved to be super helpful in boosting my mood to wake up and see them.
2. Take yourself on a date.
Oftentimes, the image that pops up when we think about a Valentine’s day dinner tends to be one from a movie: something along the lines of a romantic dinner by candlelight at an expensive restaurant. But that’s not all a date can be. I take myself on dates all the time, even if that date is ordering takeout and watching Schitt’s Creek for the millionth time on Netflix. Dates don’t have to be expensive, or cost anything at all. Cook something you love with stuff you have at home, pop on a show, or try that face mask that’s been lying in your bathroom drawer forever. Having some “you time” is important!
3. Be creative!
Participating in creative activities can also improve your mental and physical health! The benefits from focusing on something creative have actually been compared to meditation. It can “help regulate strong emotions and calm your nervous system.” For example, journaling is a great way to get all of your feelings out. It has personally helped me because when I write it all out, I can physically see how I’m feeling on the page, instead of keeping it all in my head. Believe it or not, there are actually many health benefits to journaling, from reducing stress to improving your mood and more!
4. Take a break from social media.
This can be a hard one, but it’s important. Most of us don’t go anywhere without our phones. We’re always connected, and we usually don’t think twice about it-that’s just “the way it is.” But as someone who is on social media all the time, I find it important now more than ever to take time off from social media and be more present.
There have been times when I am glued to my phone and I didn’t even realize it, like when I spent two hours watching Tik Toks after downloading the app for the first time, or when I almost missed my stop on the train because I was too busy scrolling through Twitter. Though it doesn’t happen too often, when I recognize that I’ve become too engrossed in social media, I try to make an effort to take a day or some amount of time off. This can mean inviting my friends over to hang out and watch a movie or reading a book instead of scrolling through Instagram. Any way you choose to do it, taking a short break from social media can be helpful and allow you to reconnect with those around you.
5. Get moving!
There have been studies that show that participating in physical activity can boost your mental health and improve your mood because of the release of endorphins. If you’re not a fan of a gym work out, you can always try other things, like dancing or going for a swim. You can even go for a walk with friends. Not only is that great exercise, but the added benefit of social interaction can help improve your mood!