“How to Lighten Up those Valentine’s Blues” By Roslyn Franken
Well, it’s that time of year again with all the commercial grandeur of Valentine’s Day, that one official day of the year marked by chocolate hearts, fine dining, red roses, cards and other gifts of love and romance. However, with all its magic and romance, it can also be a challenging time marked with heartache for couples when expectations go unmet or of deep loneliness for singles or widows aching for the romance missing from their lives.
Here are some tips on how to lighten up those Valentine’s Day blues.
- Remember, your mate is not psychic. Don’t expect him/her to read your mind:
I know we wish we didn’t have to spell things out for our mates. We feel they should know what we want from them and if they really love us we shouldn’t have to tell them. But is that really fair to the other person? Here’s a thought. Instead of being left disappointed yet again, why not BEFORE February 14th, sit down with your mate and talk? How about taking time to verbalize each other’s expectations for how you want to celebrate this holiday as a couple? Wouldn’t that be a lot better? If you’re expecting special gifts, a romantic card and a night of romance, then let the other know what you wish for and how important this is to you. If there’s something specific you want, tell your mate. Don’t expect your partner to read your mind and automatically know what you want. He/she may have no clue how meaningful this day is to you. as it may not mean that much to them. Otherwise you may well be left hurt and disappointed when your mate fails to live up to your expectations.
With my husband, it’s very simple. He doesn’t rely on this one day a year to buy me roses or tell me he loves me. And vice versa. I don’t rely on this one day a year to buy him gifts and tell him how much I love him. We’ve discussed it and have agreed that for us Valentine’s Day is just another day of the year. Sure, we may get each other a nice card, but if he doesn’t go above and beyond with gifts, roses and fancy dinners, it doesn’t matter to me because to us every day is a celebration of our love. Ya, ya, I know it sounds mushy, but that’s just what works for us. This way nobody is left feeling disappointed with expectations gone unmet.
Okay, so like I said maybe you wish that you didn’t have to spell things out to your mate, wishing that if only he or she could just know what to do, or what to buy for you on their own initiative. However, if that’s what you’ve done in the past and it has repeatedly left you hurt and disappointed, then perhaps it’s time to try my new approach as outlined above.
A little communication can go a long way to save you this type of heartache and lighten up your Valentine’s Day. It can also save you from your potential bad habits like running straight to the fridge or cupboard for your favorite unhealthy comfort foods, or over-indulging in extra alcohol or turning to whatever your unhealthy coping mechanism is that you rely on for instant relief.
TIPS FOR IF YOU’RE SINGLE:
- Get out of your tunnel vision. Focus on the love you already have in your life.
Instead of having tunnel vision only seeing what is missing from your life, think about all the wonderful things you already have. Why not appreciate and be grateful for all the love you already have around you? Wouldn’t that help you feel a whole lot better? Make it a point to get a group of family and/or friends together and go out for a special dinner, make cards for each other or do a fun social activity. If you have other single friends, invite them along as they too may not wish to be alone on this day.
- Go for it. Indulge yourself:
Give YOURSELF a gift of love such as a day at the spa or some cheerful flowers. If you’re trying to control your health and weight and want to try your hand at portion control, then spoil yourself with the best high quality dark chocolate, ice cream or whatever your favourite treat is money can buy. Give yourself permission to enjoy a small portion and truly taste and savor every mouthful. Just be careful not to over-indulge. Instead of buying a whole box of chocolate, for example, choose a few very special chocolates and stick to those. That way you won’t have the whole box there to tempt you.
Whether single or attached, keep things in perspective. This is only one day in the year so to beat the Valentine’s blues, plan ahead, communicate with your partner, celebrate the love you already have and have some fun!