Advertisers would have you believe that Valentine's Day is all about romantic love, so where does that leave you as a single person? Wallowing in loneliness and self pity? No way! No matter your relationship status, Valentine's Day can be an event to look forward to. Here are five tips for flying solo in style on Feb. 14.
Make It a Friends Night
Who needs a partner when you've got great friends? Take Valentine's Day as an opportunity to celebrate those friends you just can't imagine living without. Invite them over for a night of fun or go out on the town together. If you want to take your friend time up a notch, organize a gift exchange. Each participant draws the name of one other person and purchases a gift for him or her. After all, if coupled-off people get gifts for Valentine's Day, why shouldn't you?
Feeling down? Helping someone else out can really pick you up. Serve a meal at a shelter, visit the residents of a nursing home or offer to babysit for friends who don't often get out without kids in tow.If you don't want to draw attention to yourself, find some good that you can do anonymously. A friend who's gone through a recent breakup might appreciate a delivery of flowers. You'll still get that warm, fuzzy feeling from helping someone else, plus the thrill of pulling off a secret mission without getting caught.
Is there something that you'd really love to do, but you've been making excuses for why you shouldn't? Be your own Valentine and treat yourself to something special.Request the day off of work so you can take a trip to the spa. Pick up a copy of a book, movie or video game you've been eyeing and spend the evening enjoying it. Pampering yourself doesn't have to involve spending big bucks. It might just mean setting aside responsibilities for one night in order to do what you'd really like to do, like relaxing in a candlelit bubble bath.
Restaurants will be filled with dining couples, so if that makes you uncomfortable, gravitate to where the singles are. A singles bar, will be filled with plenty of other folks who are flying solo for the night. It's easier to keep the perspective that you're not the only person without a significant other when you're in a room full of un-partnered people.The goal for the night shouldn't be on finding someone special so you'll be in a relationship by next Valentine's Day. Instead, just focus on getting out, having fun and maybe making a few new friends.
Although there are plenty of messages out there that equate Valentine's Day with romance, it can really just be a day to celebrate love. Make an effort to spend time with the special people in your life. Visit a dear friend who has moved away, go see your grandparents or treat your nieces and nephews to a burger and fries.
If there too many miles between you and the people who have shaped your life, write a letter. Put pen to paper and share all the ways they've influenced you. Smile as you slide the letter or card in an envelope, knowing what a treasure it will be to receive in the mail.
This Valentine's Day, make the focus on all the things you love about yourself, your interests and your favorite people, and it will be worth remembering.
Meghan Ross is a freelance writer covering all things home and living. Her work can be found on Examiner.com.
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