Forget sappy romantic dinners, heart-shaped candies, and greeting cards this Valentine’s Day. Instead, focus on the person who truly matters most in your life: You. Whether you are single, or you’ve been married for 20 years, chances are you could use a little self-care this winter. Valentine’s Day is the perfect opportunity to show yourself some love and feel good about it.
Make yourself a tasty (and nutritious meal).
If you’ve been skipping meals or eating more fast food and takeout than you’d prefer to mention, get back to basics and spend some time in the kitchen. Cooking for yourself can make you feel good before you even taste the results. For a fun and healthy spin, try making a lightened-up version of your favorite comfort food. For example, you could try out oven “fried” chicken or whip up mac and cheese with chopped broccoli and cauliflower to sub half the pasta in your recipe. If you do want to include your sweetheart in your day, cooking together can be a romantic new way to spend some one-on-one time.
Make it a “Pal”entine’s Day.
Let’s face it; it’s not always possible to get a date for Valentine’s Day (and settling for a bad one is just the opposite of self-care). So, make it a day for friends instead! Host a low-key celebration watching movies or have a board game night. Or, meet up for lunch before the couples’ crowd hits your favorite restaurants. Spending time with the people you love on Valentine’s Day doesn’t have to limit you to romantic indulgences.
Get some exercise (in a way you actually enjoy).
Self-care should include de-stressing. One of the most effective ways to cut stress is with some exercise. However, if you’re not a regular gym goer, you might feel like exercise is more of a self-punishment. Just remember that you don’t have to burn calories in ways you don’t like. If you hate running, try riding a bike or walking instead. You don’t even have to leave the house to get moving—try a yoga session at home or dance to your favorite album.
Treat yourself (without food).
It might be easy to splurge on chocolates and other sweets on Valentine’s day but try to treat yourself in other ways. A spa facial, new haircut, or a massage can all give you the boost you need without adding extra calories to your day.
Take a break from your smartphone.
Putting down your smartphone is another one of those self-care tips that almost sounds punitive. However, it’s a good practice to keep up. Spending too much time looking at your phone—especially on social media sites—can cause a lot of negative feelings. On Valentine’s Day in particular, you’re likely to see a lot of bragging couples or single friends posting their disdain for the holiday. Either way, skip the drama and get back on Facebook or Instagram after the weekend is over.
Schedule those long overdue appointments.
When you have a busy work and home life, your self-care is probably the first area to suffer. That might mean that you’ve skipped a few doctor’s appointments, dental checkups, and other important health obligations. Carve out some time this holiday to finally schedule those appointments and get back on track with your healthcare.
If you’re feeling constantly a little behind or generally unmotivated in your daily life, scheduling a therapy visit might also be on your self-care checklist. MeMD makes it easy to get the mental or general healthcare services you need with online visits you can attend anywhere you have an internet connection.