This entry is part 4 of 6 in the series Living Single in a Couples' World

I am sure many of you single compadres out there can relate to my disdain for February 14th. Let’s chat about Valentine’s Day when you are single, and I’ll share my 5 helpful survival strategies.

Frankly, Valentine’s Day holds as much excitement for me as Arbor Day and Casimir Pulaski Day.

Seriously though, each of us who are alone at this time have our own individual stories. Some of us have been single all of our lives and have grown accustomed to spending Valentine’s Day eating a Lean Cuisine Pizza for One. Some of us have recently lost spouses or significant others and are still adapting to life without partners. Some of us are separated or going through divorces, and the last thing we want to celebrate is the glory of love.

I must share with you that life has been tough for me the last few weeks, and Valentine’s Day kinda feels like the cherry on the sundae of my pity party. I’ve been preparing to include a Valentine’s Day post in my LIVING SINGLE IN A COUPLES’ WORLD series for several weeks now, but each time I sat at the computer and began to think about what to share, I was overcome with depression, ennui or sarcasm — sometimes simultaneously.

After some meditation and prayer, not to mention some support and encouragement from our fearless leader Sara, I decided to persevere and write from my heart. Very fitting for Valentine’s Day, don’t ya think?

Friends, whatever your story and circumstances, we can still make this a special day. It may take some creativity and imagination, it may take you out of your comfort zone, but just because we are single doesn’t mean we don’t have love to share.

Here are some ways I’ve come up with to celebrate Valentine’s Day in a unique way.

Valentine’s Day When You Are Single: 5 Helpful Survival Strategies

1.Donate to a Charity

Okay, kids, we don’t have to worry about buying chocolates and flowers and hand creams that smell like petunias, so let’s take that money we’ve saved and donate to a wonderful charity. I personally just made a donation to the American Heart Association, but there are other countless charities and organizations community-wide, nation-wide, and world-wide that depend on donations to help those in need. What better way to share your love and your resources?

2. Give of Your Time

Some of us are struggling and don’t have the resources to give financially at this time. If that’s the case, seek out a local homeless shelter or food pantry to volunteer your time and talents in helping those who are less fortunate.

3. Celebrate Family and Friends

I am blessed beyond measure to have two easily lovable nieces and an equally adorable nephew in my life. I love taking Valentine’s Day as an opportunity to express to them the extent of my love and how wonderful it is to have them in my life. Take time on Valentine’s Day to recognize and spotlight the people in your life that you love but sometimes take for granted.

4. Celebrate Yourself

Let’s face it, sometimes life is busy, and we don’t take care of ourselves like we should. If you don’t have any plans on Valentine’s Day, treat yourself to something you enjoy doing. Watch one of your favorite movies. Take a walk. Allow yourself a cheat day and go for that cheesecake. Do something that makes you smile.

5. Look Ahead

Maybe you’ve been missing a loved one, but you haven’t allowed yourself to grieve. Perhaps you’re mad because you’re alone, but you haven’t allowed yourself to accept the anger. If you are alone on Valentine’s Day, use this as a starting point to make the rest of the year as good as it can be.  Take time to accept how you feel, make plans how you want to change, appreciate what you have to offer, and pray that God’s will be done.

Well, my friends, these are just a few thoughts and ideas. I’m sure if we put our heads together, we could come up with a whole bunch more.

I know it’s easy for us who are single to use a day celebrating love to concentrate on the lack thereof. Instead, I encourage you to concentrate on the abundance that’s already there.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

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