Valentine’s Day is finally upon us. Some of us love it, and others despise it. A holiday that celebrates love in all forms — platonic, unrequited, self-love, and of course romantic — the occasion brings about bountiful gifts and greetings for many. But for those of us who love to hate the holiday, we may start to feel those familiar pangs of dread in the pit of our stomachs because 1) you’re single as a pringle, or 2) the idea of being together with someone terrifies you and gives you some serious PTSD (no thanks to your exes), or 3) the holiday just makes you feel more confused about your relationship status with that guy you’re dating, then you’re not alone.
Though many of us gripe that the holiday is just a fabrication devised by greeting card companies, truth is, Valentine’s Day doesn’t have to always involve another party.
Think about it this way, if you’re sad about being alone on Valentine’s day, just remember that you’ve been single for the other days of the year too.
Okay, maybe that didn’t help.
But how about looking at this holiday from a different point of view? Sure, it might suck to see everyone on your feed posting and flaunting their bouquets of flowers and gifts, but why should you let it affect you if you’re just triggering unpleasant feelings that you’re not prepared to deal with? Prime time for a social media detox, maybe?
Throughout the year, we find ourselves struggling to keep up with what really matters having been distracted by other things like working our butt off at work, sacrificing our time and sleep for others, and stressing out over the littlest of things. No doubt, it’s tiring and despite putting up a strong front, we can’t help but feel like we’re dying on the inside.
See, sometimes the person who’s always there for everyone needs a little time for themselves. Sometimes the person who’s always bright and cheery on the outside holds the biggest hurt. Sometimes the person who’s always so supportive and encouraging to their loved ones needs words of affirmation to remind them how much they’re appreciated.
For some, experiencing an inner turmoil that makes us love ourselves even lesser than we already do, can at its worst be almost unimaginably distressing. “I’m not good enough for anything. I don’t deserve all of this. No one will ever love me and I need to get used to that.” The thought of just putting yourself in an edgy and self-deprecating state can be tiring and although we try our best to ignore these unpleasant feelings, being in heated conflict not with others but with yourself is absolutely agonising.
So, why should I love myself? Sure, you might feel like at the present moment, it’s tough to find something that’s worth being excited about and you have difficulty engaging with what’s around you. But when you don’t love yourself enough, you’ll soon realise that it’s a struggle for you to be fully immersed in what you have in your own life. It’s hard to appreciate what you have if you feel like others have more.
Think about it this way instead. Start to appreciate all the little things in life that make you happy, the same way you’ve dwelled on how everything upsets you. It’s normal to feel intense anxiety and dread for the future, but don’t let these small distractions stray you away from achieving your goals while maintaining a healthy mental and emotional state.
Your heart needs rest. You need to rest. And you deserve to take all that energy you’ve been giving to the rest of the world and invest it in yourself from time to time. It’s okay to not be strong and you don’t always have to fix everything for everyone. Remember, you don’t have to carry the weight of the world on your shoulders.
For those who’ve gone through a tough breakup, it’s fine if you’re going through a rough phase but it’s also important to not lose yourself just because you were so invested in being with someone. Take this time to work on your goals and focus on what truly matters and soon, everything will fall into place. Who knows, you’ll find the right one then.
So, the next time you see a bouquet of roses, a diamond ring, or any other form of commercialism on Valentine’s Day, take a deep breath and remember that this Valentine’s day too shall pass.