©2019 by Rebecca Clinton, LCSW.

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3 Ways to Survive Valentine's Day

If you have entered any store, even a gas station, you see Valentine's Day is about to punch you in the face. Maybe that is extreme, but Valentine's Day is the next 'big' holiday we will celebrate. As with every holiday, it can bring out the emotional best and worst in people.


I've never been big on Valentine's Day. Don't get me wrong, I love good chocolate and some pretty flowers, but I can get those ANY day of the year... not just Valentine's Day. I love to shower my loved ones with gifts and affirmations, but again, I can do those any day of the year. Yet, we put so much pressure on ourselves to celebrate our love this one day. This one very important day that falls every February 14 and is filled with lots and lots of pinks and reds. To be honest though, can you ever really live up to that pressure because each year the bar will get higher and higher and higher. So here I am to confess, as a married woman, I think Valentine's Day kinda sucks (sucks is therapeutic term, promise).


We will survive this Valentine's Day! In fact, we will thrive in it. And here is how!


1. Celebrate it as you want to!

Your relationship whether it be a romantic one, a parental one, or simply a friendship should be celebrated 365 days a year. Relationships at any level keep us connected and we are all genetically made to be connected. To break it down very simply and briefly we are biologically made to be in packs, herds, families as we sophistically call it. You don't have to be in a romantic relationship to feel the love on Valentine's Day. As much as Valentine's Day is the couple sitting across from you at the restaurant's holiday, it is also your holiday. YOU CELEBRATE IT AS YOU WANT TO!


2. Engage in Self Love

I had a client ask me "What is the difference between self love/self care and selfishness". I thought to myself that is an excellent question. It is a question that has a variety of definitions neither right or wrong as long as it is YOUR definition. Self love is so incredibly important. If you can not see your worth, how do you expect others to? Your narrative and your self talk will dictate your path. Am I saying be blind to your weaknesses? Absolutely not! Our weaknesses allow us to grow. What I am saying is don't let your weaknesses become your story. Engage in self talk that shows your strengths. Engage in self talk that mirrors your worth. You are worthy of love. You are worthy of genuine connections. Do not let your self talk steal your joy.


3.Stop comparing yourself to others

Theodore Roosevelt once said "Comparison is the thief of joy". Guess what he was right. However what President Roosevelt didn't know when he said that was how easy it was going to be to compare ourselves to others. How often do you open Facebook or Instagram and see your "friends" pictures of their new baby, or luxurious vacation, or new house, or new engagement ring. We are told to be happy but when our hearts ache for a baby, or miss the house that was foreclosed on, or our ring finger is now ringless because of a nasty divorce after 15 years of marriage, we can't help but feel a tinge of jealousy and anger. I encourage most of my clients who struggle with comparison to limit social media time because we can get lost in it! That is why social media platforms are so profitable! I want you to have the space in your heart to be happy for your friends and grieve your own losses. It is possible to do both. Yet, you can't do it under the umbrella of comparison. If you are grieving your own losses, whatever that may be, and feeling as if you are in the comparison spiral, step away from social media for the day. See what happens. I promise it will still be there when you come back.


I hope this Valentine's Day finds you well. I hope that you are able to be connected with people who fill your soul with joy. Ultimately, remember, it is only a day. Engage in self care, find your balance, and celebrate the day as you want to because it is your holiday just as much as it is someone else's!


If you feel that you are struggling finding the joy in the day, please know I am here to help. You can call me at (210) 714-1346 or email at rebeccaclinton@itherapy.com for a free 15 minute consultation to explore how I can help you find the joy you deserve to feel living your best life.





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