Society monetizes off our desire to be loved and give love. We spend hundreds of dollars on balloons, flowers, jewelry, toys, and chocolate to express love to others on Valentines Day. But, what have you bought today to express love to yourself?
Furthermore, this holiday attracts the most miserable people who feel inclined to express their misery on social media. Within the midst of that misery, we often hear, “Valentines Day is overrated.” And although I agree there’s an overrated aspect of this materialistic, overly commercialized, capitalistic holiday, we can still make fair use of the day.
If you believe in #treatyoself, then you may want to rethink your attitude on Valentines Day.
Some say we should show love to our loved ones year-round, and that’s absolutely true but, the same holds for showing love to yourself. Can you honestly say you’ve shown yourself an adequate amount of love? Can you sincerely say you’ve treated yourself with kindness, patience, and respect all year round? Sometimes we disrespect ourselves in the smallest ways. For instance, not sleeping enough, not eating healthy meals, or not visiting a doctor for a checkup once a year. These little things add up over the years, and soon enough, our health is declining, or our diets prevent us from living fulfilling lives.
To make matters worse, our society has conditioned us to believe we earn happiness through hard work. It's criminal in our western culture to treat yourself when you haven’t “deserved it.” We create guidelines to what constitutes a rewardable job well done, and if we don’t meet those guidelines, we punish ourselves and tell ourselves we’re not deserving of good things. And as a result, we created a catchy and marketable hashtag, #treatyoself, to ease the guilt of doing something nice for ourselves.
If we need a slogan to tell us to be kind to ourselves, then it’s no surprise we need an international holiday to tell us to be kind to others.
Furthermore, an overrated holiday doesn’t equate to stewing in bitterness and wasting the day being snarky at couples who go above and beyond for their significant other. Stop waiting for an opportunity to treat yourself and use today wisely! Buy yourself a nice bottle of wine, draw a fancy bath, or buy yourself a promise ring!
Side note: It’s critical for single people to remember, you must treat yourself the way you want others to treat you. If you wish for a luxurious, expensive Valentines Day from another, you must create it for yourself first. By doing this, you create a standard that attracts people that want to meet your standard. If you’re pessimistic and bitter towards the holiday, then you’ll attract other pessimistic, bitter people. And if that’s your cup of tea, I’m happy for you! But if it’s not, then you need to change your attitude.
If we need an excuse to be kind to ourselves, Valentines Day is the best day to exercise that kindness. It comes at a low expense for guilt; nobody will question what you buy today and why you bought it. And thanks to capitalism, everything goes on sale the day after. You can treat yourself at discounted prices. Who doesn’t like a good deal?
If you’re a practical spender and don’t like flowers and chocolate, take the day to buy something that enhances your self-care routine. For instance, instead of buying flowers, buy a house plant that improves the air quality in your home or a diffuser to practice aromatherapy.
If you don’t like spending at all, then make your favorite meal or binge a new show. Perhaps, take a walk in the park and breathe a sigh of relief that you’ve lived to see another beautiful day, especially during our current pandemic.
Whatever you choose to do with this lovey-dovey holiday, take a small moment of the day to prioritize loving yourself.