Be Your Own Valentine: 5 Awesome Dates to Have With Yourself
There’s no rule that you need to celebrate Valentine’s Day with a romantic partner. With so many different types of love, why should we limit ourselves to just one kind? All love should be celebrated, whether it’s love for your companion animals, love of life, love of nature, or love for yourself. So if you’re flying solo this V-Day, there’s no need to fret. Instead of dwelling on what isn’t in our lives, we can pay tribute to all of the love that we have. Here are five fabulous ways to celebrate by being our own Valentine.
DANCING ON YOUR OWN
Have the place to yourself? Valentine’s Day is the perfect time for a solo dance party. First, set the mood for self-love and exuberant movement with a gorgeously scented candle, such as (all-vegan) Skandinavisk’s Rosenhave (Danish for “rose garden”). Stir up a delightful Valentine’s Day drink (whether it’s a cocktail or mocktail), and then put on your favorite playlist or click to one of the Twitch DJs spinning live on V-Day. Twirl around; jump in the air; flail wildly ... it doesn’t matter what you do. This celebration is all about you. So let yourself drift off into groovy bliss. Go ahead and dance like nobody’s watching. When you finally collapse on the sofa after boogieing your heart out, give yourself a sweet boost with vegan Valentine’s Day chocolates from Neto, Lagusta’s Luscious, or Vegan Treats.
Kick the idea that Valentine’s Day is only for couples to the curb. No date? No problem. February 14 is a great day to claim your independence and stand strong in your solo boots. If you don’t feel like dancing, perhaps a night at the cinema is more your style. Create your own at-home film festival celebrating strong women and you’ll be in great company. Films about fierce females that deserve your focus include Hidden Figures, Suffragette, Persepolis, and Juno. So sprinkle some nutritional yeast on your popcorn, wrap yourself in your favorite throw, and rechristen Valentine’s Day as Independence Day.
You don’t need to be psychic to predict that your feeds will be filled with romantic date pics on Valentine’s Day. So why not take a digital detox? Don’t be afraid! Turn off your WiFi and your phone. Instead of swiping, gift yourself with a sweet afternoon of reading and writing. Most of us have a stack of books that we never have time to read. Now is your moment. Make yourself a dairy-free matcha latte and curl up with that fancy journal you bought (but never used). Take a few hours to indulge in your literary loves and your writing. Dive into that new novel you’ve been dying to read. If you don’t have the perfect book at home, the local library will. Read yourself enthralling verses of your favorite poetry as you sip your tea on your comfy couch. Take time to journal about all of the things in your life that you appreciate. Or perhaps you have a story you’ve wanted to write for years. Show yourself some love by giving yourself time for creative expression.
A great way to practice self-love this Valentine’s Day is to envision your future life. One way to do this is with a vision board. You’ll need: some magazines (old or new) with photos of things that make your heart sing, a large piece of poster board, a glue stick, and scissors. Take ten minutes to sit in quiet meditation before you get to work. Then go through your magazines and pick out those images and words that represent what you’d like to see in your life. What have you always dreamt about? What would you want to do if only you had the money, or the time, or the courage? Clip away at those magazines and then make a collage with what you’ve gathered, honoring what you see for yourself in the future. Keep following your life’s path and make note of what you manifest. You may want to make this an annual Valentine’s Day tradition, and do it again next year.
For those of us who were born tree-huggers, on Valentine’s Day, we can make nature our lover. Let Mother Earth be the object of your admiration. Start the day by writing a tribute to the planet. First, light a candle with scents that evoke the forest, such as Wood Nymph from Fanciful Fox. Then craft a list of everything you love about nature: I love the trees swaying in the breeze; I love the first iris of spring; I love the great oceans that embrace the fish; I love the trees that house the birds and clean the air. Write the lines, one beneath the other, on a piece of paper, and voila! You have a poem. Read what you’ve written aloud to the sky, and then set out for a walk, to take in all that is beautiful outside. If it’s a cold and gray February day, just pile on a few layers, you’ll be fine. Spend some quality time with planet Earth. Really look at the branches on the trees, the clouds in the sky, the birds as they fly overhead. Even in winter, nature shines through. Focusing on the details for a little while, you may find that your sense of oneness with the world increases exponentially, giving you a greater sense of love and peace. And love is what Valentine’s Day is all about.
Maya Gottfried is the author of books for children and adults, including Our Farm: By the Animals of Farm Sanctuary and Vegan Love: Dating and Partnering for the Cruelty-Free Gal.