5 Valentine’s Day Tips for Mental Health
“Loneliness is a sign you are in
desperate need of yourself.”
― Rupi Kaur,
Here’s the thing: Valentine’s day is not what it seems.
It’s weeks before Valentine’s day, but already you’re beginning to see your favourite people talking about their fabulous plans. As a single individual, you may be left wondering things like “Will I EVER find someone?” “Am I that unlovable?”. If you’re experiencing feelings of loneliness and/or worthlessness during this time of the year, you’re not alone. A Canadian survey revealed that 1 in 3 people aren’t happy with their love life and 1 in 4 wish they had more friends (CMHA).
For those in relationships, it might feel like a day full of unrealistic expectations that include fairytale-like dates, perfect gifts, and chocolates. A quick search on the internet will illustrate the vast amounts of anxiety and stress Valentine’s day can bring into people’s lives. According to the Canadian Mental Health Association, “a US poll found that a third of people (including those in relationships) say they feel more dread than excitement about the day”.
Whether you’re single or in a relationship, Valentine’s Day affects everyone. For many, it’s a reminder that they might not have what they want or expect in their relationships.
1 in 3 Canadian couples living together argues at least once a week
1. Celebrate YOU!
Just because you’re single, doesn’t mean that you can’t celebrate the most important person in your life: YOU! Valentine’s day can be the perfect opportunity to pamper yourself. Make your favourite foods or order take-out, prepare a bubble bath, go get a manicure, whatever it is — treat yourself to something you know will not only relieve your stress but also make you feel good about yourself.
2. Show all your relationships some love
Valentine’s day doesn’t have to be just about romantic relationships. Take a break from all the lovey-dovey stuff in your social media feeds. Celebrate new and old friendships alike by throwing an Anti-Valentine’s Day get-together or enjoy a night in watching your favourite shows.
3. Remember your love is not equal to money
When you think of Valentine’s Day, you might imagine images of fancy dinners or expensive gifts. Don’t set yourself up for failure. Remember that these expectations might be unrealistic, not only for your budget but also within your personal life. Most importantly, remember that your love does not equate to the amount of money you’re able to spend on your partner. Find other alternatives like going for a romantic walk out on the Rideau Canal, or celebrating by playing an exciting new board game at home.
4. Take a break from social media
It’s fun to see what your friends and family are up to, but social media can also take a toll on your mental health. Remember that pictures on platforms like Instagram are specially curated images, not real representations of their lives. Not everything is peaches and cream. Did you know that 1 in 3 Canadian couples living together argues at least once a week (CMHA)?
5. Speak to someone
If your feelings of loneliness and/or worthlessness last, consider speaking to someone. Terrace’s Wellness Centre offers affordable counselling options for those in the community. Not quite ready to see a professional? Speak to a friend or try writing your feelings down. Coping mechanisms can do us a world of good when implemented correctly.