Welcome to February! Does Christmas and New Year feel like a distant memory now? I’m sure by now that if you’ve been into a shopping mall or store lately, you’re not going to miss the red love hearts, red roses, teddy bears and messages of love reminding you not to forget to surprise your special someone for Valentines Day.
I’ve come across so many mixed feelings about this holiday. It’s a beautiful thought that one day of the year is put on the calendar dedicated to help remind you to show your significant other that they are loved, and a great excuse to be extra romantic. Others think it’s just a corporate holiday for retail businesses to make that extra money. Personally, I don’t think one day of the year should be when we show our love to that special someone, or that one day where we should try to be extra romantic. It also doesn’t need to be about material things or directed only to your significant other either. For one, not everyone in the world is in a relationship, so why does this holiday have to remind them of that and feel like this particular holiday doesn’t apply to them? There are so many different levels of love and appreciation for people in our lives, so why not take a moment to remind them of that too?
With today’s society being so digitally connected, it’s easy to forget to spend real quality time with important people in your life rather than just sending a text message or the occasional Facebook “like”. How many people receive physical hand written cards anymore? I’m sure you’ve even noticed the decrease in Christmas cards arriving in the mail as the years go on. How many people give a friend a card on Valentines Day saying “Thank you for being such an important person in my life and for being a great friend, I really appreciate you”? Or, turning up at their place to watch a movie together or sitting around talking over a drink and catching up on things happening in their life? How many of us try to spend time with your parents/guardians or siblings to show them you love and appreciate them?
Who’s also to say that we can’t extend that love or kindness to someone else in need that might not even be in your immediate circle? I’m sure there’s a lot of people in this world that don’t have that (or any) kind of love in their life and could use it.
Some suggestions that may make the holiday of “love” meaningful to someone else:
- Donate some money to charity (ie: to help those with life threatening illnesses, sick kids in hospital etc) – this random act of kindness can bring a little love and warmth to their day even if they don’t know you.
- Send a Valentines to a friend or family member who’s going through a tough time or struggles with this holiday
- Pick a family member and offer a helping hand with something, even if it’s an everyday thing that they’ve been putting off for months
- Ask your partner what gift they want to give you and use that money (or some of that money) to give to someone else who needs it more than you do
- Create a hamper of food and give to a homeless shelter
- Buy a toy for a sick child in hospital – any kind of toy would cheer up a sick child
- Hug your loved ones and tell them that you love them (it doesn’t cost a cent!)
Giving a gift to someone you love and getting one in return is always going to make you feel special. It’s just good to remember not to get caught up in the superficial side of things and focus on the things that matter most. Have a great Valentines Day everyone and don’t forget to show some love! xo