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If you dread Valentine's Day because you don't have a partner, take heart. Plenty of people feel that the so-called day of love is simply a holiday invented to boost candy and card sales. There are tips that can help you survive, and yes, even enjoy Cupid's holiday without feeling lonely or suffocated by ads for overpriced flowers, chocolates and jewelry.
Resist the Pressure
Being part of a couple may seem like the only correct configuration as Valentine's Day approaches. You may feel pressure to “find a date” for Valentine's Day in order to feel part of the celebration of couples. Don't give in to the pressure and book a casual first date for the evening. Asking someone out for Valentine's Day can give the date more importance than it should have. You may find yourselves surrounded by serious couples and earnest young men proposing to a beloved. These circumstances can make for such an awkward first date, you may kill the chance of a second one.
Take a Moment
If you are confronting this holiday alone for the first time in many years due to a break up, divorce or the death of a partner, you may find that Valentine's Day renews your grief. You may be better prepared to confront the feelings that accompany the day if you anticipate that the date may bring up memories and particularly strong feelings of sadness. Give yourself a break and allow yourself to grieve. It is normal to feel at a loss if you are accustomed to celebrating the holiday with a long-term partner.
Be Your Own Valentine
Pamper yourself. What better way to spend the day of affection than showing yourself a little love? Go for a run or rejuvenate with a yoga class. Book a day at the spa and indulge in a massage and a steam. Instead of eating out where you may be surrounded by fawning couples, order out from a great restaurant or whip up your ideal meal using your favorite ingredients. Enjoy a gourmet dinner in the privacy of your own home, away from the Valentine's Day crowd. Remember: you don't need to wait for someone else to buy you chocolates or flowers.
Give a Little
Senior centers, hospitals and adoption programs are among the many places where people could benefit from a little extra attention on Valentine's Day. Craft some homemade Valentine cards or heart shaped treats and bring them to folks who may need company or extra care. Giving to others is uplifting and will provide perspective on the holiday.
Gather the Troops
Plan a party of single friends, family or colleagues and throw a soiree to celebrate your independence. There's no reason to leave all the delicious chocolates and champagne to people who are part of a pair. Stock up on traditional Valentine's Day treats and share them with those you love. Plan a movie marathon featuring strong, single characters and have party guests list all the benefits that go with being single. You get to eat what you want and when you want. When you go to bed, no one steals the blankets. You always have control of the TV remote. You get the idea.
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