Valentine’s Day is often considered a holiday of pressure as couples try to gift each other with romance, jewelry, chocolates, and more. Even for those who do not have a significant other, Valentine’s Day can be upsetting due to the cultural expectation of being in a relationship. No matter the circumstance, a day that should typically be considered full of love and appreciation could easily be transformed into a day of stress, anger, guilt, jealousy, depression, sadness, and more.
Mindfulness is a way of being aware in the present moment; a way of accepting one’s feelings, thoughts, sensations, and more. According to the American Psychological Association, practicing mindfulness is a wonderful way to lessen stress and other unwanted feelings on Valentine’s Day. The following are excellent ways to practice mindfulness on Valentine’s Day:
- Give the gift of attention. If you’re with loved ones and/or friends, actively listen to them. Put your phone and computer down. Talk with them. Hear their stories and what they are going through. They will truly appreciate that, and you will feel more connected.
- Practice mindful sex. Mindful.org states that emphasizing breath and connection, slowing the pace, honoring each other’s mind, heart, and body, tuning in through the eyes, and allowing everything else to fall away are just a few excellent ways to connect with your loved one in the most intimate of ways.
- Exercise gratitude and appreciation. Consider the things in your life that make you smile, that make you feel at home, relaxed, blissful – the things that are healthy for you and uplift your spirit. Explore how wonderful those aspects of your life are and if they are people/pets and if you are able, express your appreciation for them.
- Ask those you love what would make them happy. If you’re wanting to give your loved ones something to cherish, take the stress and pressure out of finding the “perfect” gift and ask them what they would enjoy. Dr. Kirtly Parker Jones, professor at the University of Utah School of Medicine, claims that guessing could lead to spending too much, too little, unfulfilled expectations, and more.
- Practice seeing those you love with a fresh pair of eyes. Too often, we take those around us for granted and we lose sight of the beautiful aspects of who they are. Make it point to wake up on Valentine’s Day (and any other day) and view those around you with a fresh perspective. Put their flaws aside, and recognize them for who they fully are.
New Vista Behavioral Health is home to several world-renowned, California state-licensed mental health and substance abuse recovery treatment centers that offer mindfulness-based practices and other forms of treatment. Seeking help now means that you can develop the tools you need to lead a happy and healthy life. Place your well-being as top priority. Call us today at 888-316-3665 for a consultation.