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It’s that time of the year again and love is in the air! With Valentines day right around the corner, the expectation to love and be loved can be overwhelming, and the pressure to have the perfect date/outfit/gift can make a girl crazy! Whether we are single or coupled, this time of year has the potential to shine a bright pink, heart shaped spotlight on all our insecurities.

But I think we are missing the point – lets forget, for a moment, about all the pre packaged VDay messages and focus on the one love story that really is endless…the one with yourself! Think about it, relationships come and go, so does Feb. 14th, but you’ve always got YOU, so why not spend some time falling deeper in love with yourself? Here are some tips for Valentines Day and beyond, no matter if you are single, in a relationship or somewhere in between.

Have A Date Night With Yourself

Lots of us girls are people pleasers. It all started with “sugar and spice and everything nice” and we haven’t been able to shake it. So often we put everyone else’s needs are wants ahead of our own and we forget what makes us happy. So, take some YOU time to do what you love – extra points if you “unplug” from your iphone or laptop while you are at it. Here are some ideas to get you started! Buy (or pick) yourself some flowers, watch your favourite movie, make your favourite meal or snack, have a bubble bath, go for a long walk or hike, turn your music up and dance like a crazy person, read a book (for fun – not for school!), give yourself a mani and pedi or a homemade facial, write, play an instrument – whatever it is, do whatever makes you feel happiest.

Write Yourself A Love Letter

There are so many beautiful, wonderful, incredible things about you (true story), so why not put pen to paper (old school, I know) and write yourself something beautiful to keep with you and remind yourself of the things that you love about yourself? There are only two rules: Don’t say there isn’t anything loveable about yourself, because I can tell from here you are beautiful and loveable and wonderful. (It’s my superpower.) Think of your accomplishments, your kind acts, your strength, the things you have overcome, your goals and dreams, what your best friend always says about you, and all the things that make you so beautifully unique. Second rule, you can’t say anything negative, this is a love letter after all. And if you need a little inspiration, check out our friends over at WeStopHate.org and their incredible initiative Love, Yourself. It’s self love city over there!

Do Something KIND for Someone

Kindness is one of the most beautiful things in the world, and we all have the potential to make someone’s day with a simple act. And, there aren’t many things that lift our spirits and bring a smile to our faces as quickly and easily as doing something kind for someone else. So, get your Cupid on and start spreading the love! Leave post it notes in the bathrooms or on random lockers with inspiring messages, help someone in need, bake cookies for a friend/teacher/parent/classmate who needs a pick me up (or sugar rush), pay for the persons order behind you in the drive through, pop a few quarters in the parking meter for a stranger, offer to walk the neighbours dog, and smile at everyone. it just takes a few thoughtful moments to make someones day and leave you feeling pretty great as well.

Get A New Playlist

Sometimes the biggest obstacle standing between us and some fearless self love is ourselves. Most of the time, WE are the ones holding ourselves back by repeating negative affirmations or mantras to ourselves. Things like “I’m not pretty/smart/good/funny/strong/worthy enough to do or achieve or try whatever it is we want. It can be too easy to focus on the negative or compare ourselves with other girls – real or imagined. And it robs us of our right to self love, self respect and a whole lot of joy. So, here’s the deal, the more we focus on what we don’t have or what is missing in our own lives, the less happy and bold and fearless we will feel. Instead, if we focus on all the kick ass stuff in our lives, the things we DO have, the things that are kind of great about ourselves and start being our own biggest cheerleaders, we will move mountains…and have a lot more fun along the way. Being imperfect is beautiful. So are having “flaws” and screwing up and making mistakes. So, cheer yourself on, be encouraging and supporting and your own best friend. It might be hard to silence that inner mean girl for good, but turn her volume down, and send her love, because she’s just scared. Creating a positive inner playlist is vital when it comes to self love, so try to only think positive, kind, encouraging thoughts about yourself. And, if it help, leave yourself notes to remind you on your mirror or in your locker. Grateful looks good on you, gorgeous!

Share The Love!

Now that you are feeling full of love, it’s time to share it! Who says Valentines are only for romantic partners (prospective or otherwise)? Unleash your inner Martha and get crafty (either solo or with some of your friends) and make some inspiring, self love themed VDay cards to send to your friends or random classmates. Search the internet for inspiring quotes or come up with your own positive messages and spread the love!  You could even make posters to put up around your school, or get a big group together and create cards or notes for all the girls in your grade or in their first year at your school or local elementary or middle school. (It’s one of the February activities in the FGOC Curriculum!) to help set the self love revolution ablaze at your school! OR, visit our dear friend and total fearless girl Jen Rubino over at Cards For Hospitalized Kids and make Valentines to send to sick kids in hospital.

This Valentines Day (and every day), make it a priority to fall in love with yourself. Even if it’s just a little bit more than the day before.

xo

Kate

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