When February 1st rolls around I can guarantee the first e-mail you’ll see when you look at your inbox will be something related to buying the perfect gift for Valentine’s Day. Uh, the day of love. Head into any store and the front display will be bursting with red and pink hearts. Open up your social media on the 14th and prepare yourself for the mushy posts and the endless photos of chocolates and presents (“He spoils me!”).
Look, I’m not bitter. I swear. Valentine’s Day has never appealed to me even when I was in a relationship. The color pink makes me think of Pepto-bismol, which doesn’t exactly scream romance to me. Plus, if I wanted chocolate I could just hit up the deli and buy it for myself.
That also doesn’t mean as a single woman I don’t feel a pang in my chest as I read paragraphs on paragraphs and see romantic photos from couples that I can’t help say to myself, “I wish someone loved me too.”
Or at least cared about me.
Or tolerated me enough to be around me.
This year I’ll be spending the day by myself. All I want is a heart shaped pizza, a bottle of wine, and for a guy to deliver a bag of sour patch kids to my doorstep and then be on his way. The last part is definitely not happening but a girl can dream, can’t she?
Here are some tips for spending Valentine’s Day alone if you’re single without wallowing in self-pity:
Put on a fluffy robe, play some soft music and light that Bath and Body Works candle you’ve been saving for company.
Deep condition your hair, you know you’ve been meaning to and no one except your mom or grandma are going to be looking for you at night anyway. Apply your favorite face mask to unclog your pores and paint your nails fire engine red.
Fellas, if you’re reading this there’s nothing wrong with pampering yourself too. Trim your beard, use a face mask (seriously, they’re for men too) and cut your nails. Don’t forget to moisturize.
Turn Your Phone Off
And your computer and your tablet. Or at least put them all on airplane mode. Stop yourself from scrolling through Facebook and Instagram and rolling your eyes at all the sappy posts.
Whatever you do, do not go on Tinder or any other dating app/website. It is a horrible idea to go on a first date with someone on Valentine’s Day. Everyone reacts differently to being alone for the holiday. Someone might suffocate you with their expectations for the day while another might not care about it all and that could be a let down to you. Worry about swiping and planning out a date on February 15th. Don’t waste romance on anyone who won’t appreciate it or may see your love for the day as a red flag.
Treat Yo’ Self
Have your favorite dessert. Mine is a heart shaped pizza with a side of a heart shaped pizza. I’d also love a chocolate heart with a caramel filling but all the singles know the best day to buy candy is the day after Valentine’s Day when it’s 50% off.
Until then break open a bag of chips or inhale a sleeve of cookies.
Pro tip: A nice steak dinner for one sounds great but many restaurants have special menus for the holiday, which means the prices for your favorite dish may skyrocket. Stay in, break out the Chinese takeout menu and go crazy.
Escape the Night With a Movie
Open a bottle of wine, lay down, and watch a movie. If you want to watch something romantic and on theme with the holiday I recommend: Love Actually, How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days, Must Love Dogs, Under the Tuscan Sun, and Return to Me.
Or you can watch a horror movie because why not watch someone get chopped in half or tortured on the most romantic night of the year?
Head to the Gym
Or go for a run outside if the weather permits. Take your anger out on the treadmill instead of stalking your loser ex online trying to figure out their plans.
Seriously…turn off your phone!
If you can’t stand being at home then you should consider going on a vacation. Book a hotel room, order some room service and relax. Or book a solo trip out of the country or state for yourself. This is an especially good tip if you’re still getting over a break-up or you’re going through a hard time in your life. Flights are notoriously low during January and February because everyone is back to work so they’re not focused on traveling.
Make this your time to cross something off of your bucket list.
And if you don’t want to go alone invite your single friend or your mom and enjoy ‘Galentine’s Day’ in another town.
Put Things In Perspective
While everyone else is spending their day focused on someone else you can focus on yourself and your goals. Why waste the night? Plan out your vision board, write out your goals, and focus on your wants and needs for a bomb-ass year.
Put things in perspective: just because you’re spending the day alone doesn’t mean there’s something wrong with you or you’re missing out. If the fact that you’re alone really bothers you take some time to reflect and figure out why your relationships haven’t worked out.
Is it because you can’t compromise? Is it because you’re always dating the wrong person? Are you always dating the wrong person because you don’t love yourself?
Every tip I’ve given you is about loving yourself. No matter what others may tell you, loving yourself isn’t self-absorbed. How can you expect to love someone else if you don’t even love yourself?
Screw this society that tells you, you need to spend Valentine’s Day with someone. Whether you’re single or in a relationship the person you should love the most is you so show yourself a good time.
Celebrate you this Valentine’s Day. Keep the self-deprecating to a minimum. Wake-up February 14th with your head held high and don’t let it phase you because it’s just another day. And on the 15th don’t forget to head to the store for 50% off chocolate.
How are you celebrating Valentine’s Day this year? Leave a comment below sharing your plans or tips to get through the day.