Why Self-Love on Valentine's Day Matters

Plus How Our Ref's Will Show Themselves Some TLC
We tend to focus on showing love to others on Valentine's Day, but showing some love to yourself might be the best and most generous choice you can make.

Valentines Day is what I like to call “a holiday of expectations.”

If you’re in a relationship, you’re expected to do something romantic with your partner, or buy something meaningful, or put your love into words in a card; you also have expectations that your partner will do the same. If you’re single, you feel these expectations in the air around you, and it’s hard not feel that society expects you to be in a romantic relationship, at least for that one day.

And not to be a hater, but in my experience, those expectations—whichever ones ring true for you—lead to disappointment. A day that is supposed to be a celebration of love leaves us feeling let down, feeling like no matter what our spouses or friends or family or whoever gave us, it wasn’t enough. In the day of Instagram and Facebook, where happy shiny snapshots of “perfect” lives are broadcast daily, these feelings are amplified.

Now I’m not anti-love. I love love, and I love expressing it to those I care about. But on this particular day, when we all tend to place our happiness and feelings of self-worth in the hands of others, hoping we’ll get flowers or a card and feeling bad if we don’t, I propose that you take back control, release expectations, and show love to the person who you tend to ignore above all others, the person who you know you won’t disappoint: yourself.

Yes, this Valentine’s Day, let’s shower ourselves in the love that we forget to show during other days of the year. We’re all so hard on ourselves that it’s important to set aside time to nourish your mind, body, and soul. (And, of course, there are a multitude of healthy ways to do this that don’t involve eating junk!)

In this spirit, we asked our team of Referees to tell us what they’re planning on doing on Valentine’s Day to show themselves some self-love, and they had some great ideas. We're also starting the Love Your Body Kickstarter this week, where the theme will all about showing your body love by getting healthy. Check out their responses, and share your own ideas in the comments!

Alexis: This is the first Valentine’s Day I’ve been single for a decade! OH MY! So it’s all about self-love of me. I’m going to order sushi, buy myself flowers, and watch The Walking Dead premier in candlelight. Daryl Dixon is my Valentine. No chocolates! This seems simple, but it’s super important to me because, if I let it, Valentine’s Day could really stink!!

Ashley: To show myself some self-love on Valentine’s Day, I’m going to buy myself some new clothes. Losing weight makes it hard to dress oneself.

Dean: Mine isn’t just about one day, but more long-term. I’ll show myself some self-love by getting outside more this month!

Karyn: To love myself better, I’ve decided to join a Curves gym. It’s an exercise program that has worked for me before, and I know it’ll make me feel good to be more active. And now that I’ve typed it out, that means I need to commit to it!

Kim: I think a mani-pedi is in order!

Jeff: I plan to spend more time in the pool at the gym. I love swimming, and it will improve my cardio.

Jenn D: I’m going to schedule a massage soon, as well as a visit from my grandparents in New Jersey.

Stacey: For February self-love, I’ll be spending as much time as possible with my sister and her family when they visit. They are seriously awesome for my mental health.

Tim: I’m going to show love for myself in February by trying to make sure I get enough sleep. I’ve been doing okay at this, but it’s nice when I’m not feeling tired in the day. I feel like I can be more productive, or at least not complain! Also, I might try to do more yoga. It usually makes me feel good after I do it.

I don’t know about you guys, but I love all these ideas! For my part, I’m planning on spending money on a yoga class at a studio I usually deem “too expensive,” and perhaps experimenting with a delicious new recipe for dinner.  Excited to hear what you guys come up with!

And don’t forget you can keep the love going all month long with the Love Your Body Kickstarter!

Make it WayBetter

Don't make self-love an annual event! Schedule time into each week that you set aside just for yourself to do something that nourishes you.