This Valentine’s Day, I encourage you to start having a sizzling affair. Not the way you think, though — I want you to choose your closest soul mate, the one who’s been there for you during all the ups and downs of your life and the person who has never, ever left you, and never will.
Ah, love. Each Valentine’s Day, lovers take pause to recognize that special someone in their lives. Pink and red hearts ornament retail locations, and flowers, chocolates, jewelry and other gifts are purchased and exchanged. Hands are held, sweet nothings are shared and love is in the air.
But what if these tokens of romantic affection mean something more sinister than the celebration of love and friendship? What if the production of these goods comes at a grave cost for the people directly connected to them?
Nothing says “I love you” quite like a gigantic box of chocolates, right? Hardly! This special holiday symbolized by hearts and celebrated with high-calories treats can be anything but heart-healthy. However, there’s no hard and fast rule that requires us to celebrate with sugary candy and foods saturated with fat. Celebrating Valentine’s Day in a healthy way does not mean that you can’t enjoy your favorite treat in moderation. Or, forget the treats and celebrate in a unique way that’s special for you and your loved one(s).
Can you believe it? We’re already halfway into February! I have been getting calls for counseling requests around relationships; Valentine woes and deep feelings of aloneness. I even got a Facebook message from a man challenged with his life choices and loss of love. I am very clear that every person on this planet wants to love and be loved. We all want to feel special, be seen and acknowledged for the beautiful beings that we are. So why is it so hard to “find” love?
A Bird of the Air is our February feature. Filmed in New Mexico, it tells the story of a solitary man (Jackson Hurst) whose life is altered by both a stray parrot and a woman (Rachel Nichols) who inspire him to ask questions about his past — and his future. A Bird of the Air was directed by Margaret Whitton and written by Roger Towne, best known as the writer of The Natural, which starred Robert Redford.
We give each other 10-second verbal valentines all year long. We believe it’s one of the main reasons we’re more in love now than when we met 32 years ago. Verbal valentines are not just for lovers, either. You can give them at work, to children, to other family members and to cherished friends.
I’m a sucker for love letters and chocolate, so it should come as no surprise that I look forward to Valentine’s Day. Show a little love for your partner and the planet by having an eco-friendly holiday this February 14!
Planning and scheduling time with those you love is obviously crucial to maintaining a healthy and happy relationship. We are all so busy these days that it’s always a good idea to schedule time to reconnect.
If you’re like most people, your dates/special times are based on “calories consumed,” whether that means eating at a new restaurant, getting snacks at a movie, meeting for a fancy coffee or a glass of wine after work. These things can be great ideas for spending time together but once in a while why not try looking at the opportunity to be with those you love a little differently?
Plan your time with loved ones based on “calories burned.” What I mean is to pick activities to do together that are focused on being active and expending calories.
Contrary to the deluge of advertisements, magazine articles and greeting cards floating around right now, not everyone looks forward to Valentine’s Day. Lots of people can’t stand it. Hate it, even. (I know; I used to be one of them until I got engaged on Feb. 14th five years ago.) It can seem like just another excuse to spend money and an opportunity to wish your love life were somehow different.
If you detest this time of year or just aren’t looking forward to this particular V-Day, try these simple ways to shortcut through the schmaltz and societal pressure and go straight to what this high-pressure holiday is really all about. Not flowers, chocolates or over-priced dinner reservations, but love. May one or some or all of these activities help you transform Valentine’s Day into an opportunity to recharge your love batteries.