50 Ways to be your own Valentine

The aisles have been pink + red for what seems like two months already. Look at Hallmark wasting no time after the holidays to make sure we remember another one is juuustt around the corner. 

And although Valentine’s Day is a “hallmark holiday”, I still like to buy into any idea of celebrating the ones you love, a little extra special, one day out of the year!

But, in recent years, Valentine’s Day has taken on a much more inclusive feeling.

A Valentine isn’t just your significant other anymore, your Valentine may be your best girlfriends, your parents, your SELF! It's become a day to celebrate love in all its unique forms. 

How awesome is that?!

Before I started dating my BF, I spent V-day with my girlfriends at a hip, new restaurant in town with good drinks + lots of bread. It was very chic + fun, a la Sex and the City.

Nowadays, we have “Galentines” day which is dedicated to celebrating the most confusing, dramatic, beautiful + chaotic relationships we have, our girlfriends.

SATC has been celebrating this holiday since the 90’s so I’m glad we’re all finally catching on...because just as its important to celebrate the love we share with our S.O., other relationships in our lives need to be loved on too!

Which leads me to say this: no relationship is as important as the one you have with yourself, for yourself + by yourself. You cannot love anyone, fully + truly, without loving yourself first. 

Often times, as women (especially young women), we people-please until we’re drained of everything we've got + turn into the Bride of Chucky.

This year, let’s change that. Starting today. Valentine’s Day.

First + foremost, you are your own Valentine. Take care of #1 + everything will else will fall right into place beside you.

Whether you’re in a relationship, hoping to be in one or totally ok with flying solo, we should all be into self-care, self-love + self-growth. 

You cannot pour from an empty cup.

So here are 50 Ways to Be Your Own Lover (get your head out of the gutter...) :

  1. Take a digital detox - 1 day, 1 hour, 1 episode. Put the phone down.
  2. Book a massage AND facial. Yes, its expensive + yes, its totally necessary.
  3. Cook your favorite meal just for yourself.
  4. Go sit by water + just be. A river, a beach, a pond. 
  5. Practice gratitude. Right now, 3 things you’re grateful for. GO!
  6. Avoid TV for one week. Instead play your favorite music. Loud.
  7. Write a thank you note to someone you love. This does more for you than a “thank you” will ever do for someone else.
  8. Buy a bunch of sheet masks from Sephora + once a week have a “spa night”.
  9. Declutter your life. Start with your car, then your room. Throw out anything that doesn’t serve your or bring your joy. 
  10. Watch a classic Meg Ryan/Tom Hanks movie. Cliche is an understatement, but they do it so well.
  11. Enjoy a morning coffee or tea, alone, somewhere you can feel the sun. 
  12. Read a new book. No matter what the topic, pick something you’re interested in. 
  13. Take a hot bath with a bath bomb from Lush. The smell divine + they swirl + twirl around you.
  14. Schedule a monthly girls night. Schedule it, or it won’t happen.
  15. Take a walk outside in the sunshine, even if its cold. Vitamin D does wonders to the mind + body.
  16. Make a vision board. Finally create the life of your dreams.
  17. Invest in yourself. In whatever ways that means to you.
  18. Pick up the phone + call a friend you miss. Call them, don’t text.
  19. Practice some yoga stretches or just lay in child’s pose.
  20. Meditate. Or as I like to call it, "nap".
  21. Find a comedy special on TV + laugh until you pee your pants.
  22. Write a letter to your future self.
  23. Buy yourself something you’ve always wanted.
  24. Dress up for the day. Just because.
  25. Put your phone on airplane mode when you’re with the ones you love.
  26. Binge watch a new show + don’t feel bad when Netflix asks you if you’re still watching.
  27. Color. Yes, this is still a thing. And really does wonders to help you relax + zone out.
  28. Buy one of those fancy candles, the ones with real essential oils + light that shit up, baby!
  29. Get in bed (sans phone) early + drift off to sleep faster than ever.
  30. Drink lots of water. Leave a glass on your end table + drink it first thing.
  31. Go to the movies by yourself. This isn’t weird. Nobody’s lookin’ at you. Teach yourself to be content in your own company.
  32. Eat healthful foods. The ultimate in self-care.
  33. Host a dinner party. If entertaining is what fuels you.
  34. Make your bed. Seriously, your mind will instantly feel less cluttered.
  35. Go for a walk with a friend. Outside…not on adjacent treadmills.
  36. Spend some time with a pet. You don’t have to have your own, someone will gladly let you walk theirs.
  37. Bake something that smells as good as it tastes. Doesn’t matter if you buy it from a box.
  38. Donate that dollar (or 5!) to St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital when they ask you. Don’t be that person who doesn’t. We’ve all got a dollar to spare. 
  39. Listen to the audiobook version of a book that looked too intimidating to read.
  40. Find three or four podcasts you love + listen to them on your commute!
  41. Play music while you cook. If you want, get fancy, Dinner Party Radio on Pandora is a personal fave. 
  42. Volunteer at a nursing home or pet adoption center. Doing for others, because you want to, fuels you in more ways than you can imagine. 
  43. Download Duolingo + spend 10 minutes a day learning that new language you always wanted to.
  44. Attend a workshop, seminar, conference on a topic you’re interested in. Go by yourself if you have to! You’ll leave with ten new friends.
  45. Drink some sleepytime tea before bed as part of your new bedtime ritual.
  46. Rearrange furniture. Sometimes a change in environment is as simple as moving somethings around.
  47. Go for a bike ride. Moving while outdoors does wonders for your soul.
  48. Splurge for that Spa pedicure they keep bugging you about. 
  49. Get a no reason blowout. Because sometimes our arms are sore + its nice to have someone else play with your hair. 
  50. Buy yourself your own damn flowers. You deserve it.

Hope all of you lovies have a fab Valentine's Day this year + remember self-love is a 365 day holiday.

Big hug + lots of L-O-V-E!

xo Kendall Marie