Whether you’re single, in a romantic relationship, “it’s complicated,” or have any relationships in your life that you cherish, love is accessible to you this valentine’s day. Whether you choose to celebrate this holiday or not, the topic of love and gratitude is one of utmost importance, every day of the year. Although the eight foot teddy bears, heart-shaped boxes of chocolate, and romantic dinner dates flooding our news feeds can hinder our perception on what exactly love and appreciation are, we’re all worthy of that same appreciation - whether it’s Valentine’s Day, or not.
What I think of when I hear the word “love” is drastically different than what I thought of the word a few years ago; and it’s different for everyone. Not only in the meaning, but how we use the word, how we feel love, and how our perception of the physical gratification and manifestation of love shows itself in our everyday lives. Although love can be used in a romantic sense, and it is a romantic feeling, it’s not just that. Love is a very broad term, and is influenced by individual perception and experiences, like everything, but is far too often confused with just a romantic or lustful definition. The beautiful thing about love is that it manifests itself in many different ways, it flows through you to many different things and people; pets and moments; memories and situations. As Valentine’s Day commercials and advertisements roll around, I find myself getting sucked into that romantic definition of the word, and observe so many forgetting that we can show this love to not only our significant others, but our family, our friends, ourselves, our pets, to anything we appreciate.
Not only do you deserve to show yourself this love and appreciation, but don’t let yourself get caught up in the throes of what Valentine’s Day is for corporations and businesses. As many holidays have turned into buying and giving gifts to show appreciation, this is not what love is. Although giving your loved ones gifts to show appreciation and love, this can be done in simple, everyday gestures. Love is so much more than buying the most expensive gift you can find, it’s in the gesture, the feeling, the words said and actions made - at least, that’s how I see it. If you don’t have money to get an expensive gift, do something kind, write a letter showing your appreciation and love for that person, make something, bake or cook for them, there are endless possibilities of ways you can simply show love and appreciation without needing to go out and buy something. These gestures, this show of appreciation and love, it can be done any day of the year - don’t limit yourself to this one holiday! One of the greatest things about love and gratitude is that it’s so contagious; the more you show it, the more you feel it. Making this appreciation and acknowledgement of gratitude a frequent thing is so incredibly beneficial, and will enhance your personal love and gratitude, I promise you that.
So, if you’re single this Valentine’s day, don’t be down on yourself. Although you may not be splurged with flowers and kisses from your significant other, there are endless ways to show this same love and appreciation to yourself and your own loved ones. Take some “me-time,” create, write, send yourself your favorite flowers; you are oh so worthy of it.