Today is a day about love. Often, we are focused on loving others above ourselves, and sometimes it’s easier too. This Valentine’s Day I wanted to share a few ways that I like to focus on self-care and give us extra reasons to love ourselves as much as we focus on loving those around us today and always.
This should be a reward and celebration, not a punishment. Moving because you can. Because it feels good. Here are some examples of a movement that will show your body love.
Feel the sun on your skin and breath deep as you do. Feel your body move no matter how slow. Feel it soften. Feel it strengthen. Or try something new and challenge your body. But be kind to your body as you do. Be grateful for what you can do and not worry about what you can’t.
Just as you would send a valentine or an encouraging note to someone else you care for deeply on this day, set aside some time to share some words of love and support with yourself. I’ve been known to buy myself fancy stationery and pens with stamps and mail myself notes around birthdays and other days that warrant a little extra love and reflection. What would you say to someone you love today? Would you also say it to yourself? You should. Write it down and make sure to be as loving as you would be to your friend. We could all use a reminder. You deserve it.
I’m using the word “good” here to guide you to eat food that is good for you on this day at this moment. It should be food that isn’t restrictive but food that makes you feel nothing but good. This has nothing to do with calories.
This can mean cooking something for yourself at home you’ve been wanting to try. Or going out to eat at your favorite restaurant and ordering dessert. It could meet ordering take-out in and staying in and watching your favorite movie at home. Treat yourself and don’t worry about the calories. It can be indulgent. Give yourself permission. Again, “good” is being used here not in reference to good or bad like we normally think of it but as in may it make you feel good. Really good. Eat something today that makes you happy and something you can be intentional about as you do so. It makes everything taste even better.
No matter the answer do more of that today. This is something I try to check in with myself about regularly but sometimes life and plans and to-do lists get in the way. Valentine’s Day is a great place to start asking yourself this question. A hobby is something that should add to your life and not have pressure attached to it. It may be spending time with friends and catching up while sharing stories. It may be solo time on a hike with your dog. Do you like to garden? Or taking photos of things in nature? Or reading books in the sun? How about exploring new places?
The sky is the limit on this. Maybe some of the things you love are ones you already incorporate into your daily life (I hope so) but maybe there is also something you’ve been wanting to do or try or experience. Giving yourself the chance to do those things would be the ultimate act of self-care today. Who knows where this question could lead to?
It’s as simple and as complicated as that. All of these recommendations are rooted in self-care and love but sometimes we need the reminder as we pursue them to be kind to ourselves. There is a past version of you out there that is proud of where you are. You’re doing better than you think you are. Even on the loneliest and hardest of days. I have to remind myself of this often. Smile at yourself when you look in the mirror. Give yourself a compliment. Don’t compare yourselves to others. Today and always.
So, Happy Valentine’s Day! Treat yourself. Love yourself. These suggestions aren’t limited to just one day. Every day can be the 14th. Take some time to pause for yourself today. You are worth the love you are always giving others.
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