“Will you be my Valentine?” If you’ve grown up exposed to popular cinema and music, chances are you’ve heard of this phrase at least once in your life. St. Valentine’s day is celebrated by hopeless romantics on 14th February of the calendar year. People of all ages exchange cards, gifts, and mementos to express their love and proclaim their affection to their loved ones. It’s widely accepted as a day of romance and a celebration of love between two people.
But how did this day come to be? Who invented Valentine’s Day? Let’s take a brief walk through the pages of history.
History and facts of Valentine’s Day
The day is commemorated as a tribute to Saint Valentine, a catholic priest who lived in 3rd-century war-time Rome, which was ruled by a Pagan leader, Claudius II Gothicus. Legend has it, that Christianity was becoming more prevalent accepted by mainstream Romans, especially soldiers, who were in short supply during the ongoing war. The emperor forbade marriage and persecuted Christians as he believed this would prove to be a distraction in the on-going war-time effort. Saint Valentine is believed to have conducted many marriages in secret to unite war-torn lovers and forward the crusade for love, companionship, and marriage. When discovered, Saint Valentine was thrown into jail and eventually killed at the behest of the emperor for disobeying his orders on the 14th of February, 270 BC. The day is since remembered as a testament to his sacrifice for love and his fight against romantic oppression.
Don’t fall for the Valentine’s day hype
While the story of Saint Valentine is definitely heroic and worth remembering, we should also take it with a pinch of salt. Times have changed and the meaning of Valentine’s day has evolved with it. Declaring one’s love for another person is a beautiful facet of life, but that doesn’t mean that it’s necessary to be in love at all times. Or even, express it on Valentine’s day to be specific. Valentine’s day in recent times is more of a phenomenon invented by greeting card companies and music labels to propagate a very commercial idea of romantic love and how we express it. Don’t fall into the hype created by this marketing gimmick. In fact, urban legend states that Valentine’s day is an occasion invented by the greeting card company Hallmark in order to boost sales and move bulk inventory on a single day. Some estimates suggest that revenue generated on Valentine’s day is upwards of 1.3 billion USD solely on account of sales of greeting cards, chocolates, and flowers. That being said; here are some pointers to remember if you’re feeling the pressure of conforming on Valentine’s day:
- Valentine’s Day is a day as good as any to express your love. The other 364 days of the year are equally good to be in love and say how you feel.
- You don’t have to buy expensive gifts or spend an exorbitant amount of money to profess your love. As long as your partner knows how you feel, the purpose of Valentine’s Day is achieved.
- Remember, not everybody is falling in love on Valentine’s day even if social media has you believing it. Live in your own reality and cherish the relationships you have, whether they are romantic or not.
Valentine’s day is about loving yourself
Consider this- while everybody is spending valentine’s day romanticizing the idea of relationships, you can spend the day celebrating your oldest and longest-standing love- for yourself. Let being single on Valentine’s Day be an excuse to focus on yourself. Self-love is the highest level of relationship goals there are; after all, if you don’t love yourself, how can you love someone else?
Valentine’s day is a great day to be kind to yourself, to reflect on your life and priorities and spend quality time with family and close friends. Practice self-care and take the time to nourish your body and mind as a gift from you to you.
How to celebrate Valentine’s day when you’re single
Embrace your singleness
Change the narrative of Valentine’s day from being a day of expression of romantic love to being one of self-love. Catch up on your favorite movies, eat good food, listen to soulful music and celebrate just being you. Take the day to celebrate your own company.
Relationships are full of compromises and a lot of individual interests get sidelined in them. Couples spend time indulging in activities that both people enjoy; hence some unique individual interests get sidelined. Use Valentine’s day as an excuse to revisit some of your old passions.
Reconnect with old friends
Get together with your old gang and have a blast. Reconnect with missed connections and share experiences with people who you couldn’t previously take out time for. This is a great way to make new friends and expand your circle.
Get ready to mingle
Valentine’s day is also a great day to meet other single people and spark the beginning of a new romantic relationship. A lot of people are on the lookout of someone interesting either in person or via dating apps. Wear your heart on your sleeve and be open to getting to know someone new and you never know where the day could lead.
Share the love with your community
There are many sections of our society that are desolate and underprivileged, craving for care and affection. Spend the day doing one good thing for people who may not be as lucky as you and they will cherish it for a long time to come. This is a great way to share the love on Valentine’s day.
Let one day of your life do not define your love for yourself or others. We want all of you to be ever demanding all 365 days a year. Build your relationships around trust, open communication, love, compromises, understanding, and forgiveness. As people say – The little things matter and sometimes they matter the most. It’s sometimes the little things that make the big things even better. A smile, a little help, a compliment, kind words, showing care and just generally being sweet takes you a long way. Let’s inculcate these habits in your everyday routine. We know it’s easy said than done, we know you might feel lonely on this particular day, it’s okay. Talk to Wysa, our friendly AI bot, for free! Remember: Just like everything in life, this too shall pass.
Let the fad of Valentine’s fade away.