Love is Love is Love
By: Alyssa Bombacino & Joelle Rabow Maletis
Valentine’s Day can be a difficult time for many people, as societal pressure to celebrate the holiday and the added stress of making the day perfect can negatively impact our well-being. One US poll finds that a third of people, including those in relationships, experience a greater sense of apprehension rather than excitement about the day (Kamyar, 2022). The holiday can also bring up feelings of loneliness, isolation, and anxiety for those who are single, divorced, or who have lost a loved one. Processing and sitting with these feelings can be difficult.
Valentine’s Day tends to affect all of us, regardless of if we are in a relationship or not (Terrace Wellness, 2018). If you’re feeling overwhelmed, it’s important to take a step back and prioritize self care. Try using this day as an opportunity to focus on self love and compassion. Remember to be kind to yourself, practice self-care and reach out to others for support. Keep reading for more helpful tips and strategies for coping with any difficulties that may arise during this day.
Some Things To Keep In Mind This Valentine’s Day:
- Love Doesn’t Have To Be Romantic
Although Valentine’s Day is often portrayed as a romantic holiday, it’s important to remember that love comes in many different forms. Love can be romantic, but it can also be platonic, self-love, and even love for a pet or a hobby. On this day, it’s important to not only express love to our significant others, but also to show it towards ourselves and those around us. It’s an opportunity to appreciate the people and things that bring joy and happiness to our lives.
- Love Does Not Equal Gifts
Avoid comparing yourself to others this Valentine’s and remember that simple, heartfelt gestures can be just as meaningful as expensive gifts or fancy dinners when expressing love. Instead, focus on simple, everyday acts of love like cooking a special meal, writing a heartfelt note, or planning a fun, low-key activity together. The most important thing is that the gesture comes from a place of love and thoughtfulness. Communicate openly with your partner to ensure that your gestures align with their preferences.
- It’s Only One Day
Valentine’s Day is just one day of the year and it should not define your worth or happiness. As VeryWell Mind suggests, there is no need to view Valentine’s Day any differently than a normal day (Cuncic, 2020). Everyone’s circumstances and dispositions are different, and it’s okay if you don’t have a romantic partner or don’t want to celebrate in a “traditional” way. Remind yourself that this day is not a reflection of the rest of your life and that it’s important that you put your well-being first.
Ways To Manage Your Mental Health On This Day
- Take A Break From Social Media
Taking a break from social media on Valentine’s Day can have many benefits for your mental health and well-being. Research shows that even a brief hiatus from social media can help us to decrease feelings of loneliness and depression (Hunt et al., 2018). By limiting screen time, you can avoid feeling overwhelmed by the constant reminders of romantic love and instead, focus on yourself and your own well-being. Additionally, you can create more time for connecting with the people and things that bring you joy and happiness in life. It’s important to keep in mind that social media often presents a selective view of reality, and should not be taken at face value.
- Express Gratitude For The Relationships You Have
Expressing gratitude for the relationships in your life whether romantic, platonic, or familial, can help shift your focus from feelings of isolation to appreciation for the people who matter most. One way to do this is by sending a heartfelt text, note, or even doing a small act of kindness for someone you care about. Whether it’s a friend or family member, or even someone you see regularly but don’t talk to much, this simple act of gratitude can go a long way in helping you feel more connected and valued by the people around you. Activeminds describes, “Sharing love with others can be one of the best ways to remind ourselves that this day is about love in all forms and that love is all around us” (Anneiro, 2021). Try taking time this Valentine’s Day to reflect on the relationships in your life and express gratitude for the love and support they provide.
- Practice Good Self Care
Practicing good self-care on Valentine’s Day can help you focus on your own wellbeing and improve your mood. Some ways to practice self-care on Valentine’s Day include taking a relaxing bath, indulging in a favorite hobby, going for a walk, or even treating yourself to a special meal or small gift. It’s also important to remember that self-care isn’t just about physical activities, it’s also about taking care of your mental and emotional well-being. So, take some time to reflect on your own needs and do something that makes you feel good. Remember, you deserve to be loved and cared for, and self-care is one way to give that love and care to yourself.
Valentine’s Day is a day to celebrate and appreciate love in all its forms, but it’s also important to remember that love is not limited to one day and that it should be expressed and celebrated all year round. Remember that you are not alone, and that it’s okay to take time for yourself.
As always, don’t hesitate to reach out to us if you have any questions or concerns. We are here to support you during this time.
You can reach us at (650)-386-6753 or info@joellerabowmaletis to share your comments, ask questions, or schedule an appointment.
Annerino, T. J. (2022, September 29). Give yourself love this valentine’s day. Active Minds. Retrieved January 24, 2023, from https://www.activeminds.org/blog/give-yourself-love-this-valentines-day/
Cuncic, A. (2020, August 22). 10 best ways to enjoy valentine’s day on your own. Verywell Mind. Retrieved January 26, 2023, from https://www.verywellmind.com/how-do-i-cope-with-being-alone-on-valentines-day-3024299
Hunt, M. G., Marx, R., Lipson, C., & Young, J. (2018). No more Fomo: Limiting social media decreases loneliness and depression. Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology, 37(10), 751–768. https://doi.org/10.1521/jscp.2018.37.10.751
Kamyar. (2022, June 9). 10 tips for the valentine’s day blues. CMHA Northern BC Branch. Retrieved January 26, 2023, from https://northernbc.cmha.ca/10-tips-for-the-valentines-day-blues/
Terrace Wellness Group (2018, May 12). 5 valentine’s day tips for mental health. Medium. Retrieved January 24, 2023, from https://medium.com/terrace-wellness-group/5-valentines-day-tips-for-mental-health-cd9eb46679ee