Love Thy Self: My Favourite Self-Love Tips for Valentine's Day
Written by: Norine Khalil, MSc RD
Those who know me, know. I see life through the lens of a Romantic Comedy, at all times – so naturally, Valentine’s Day is one of my favourite days of the year. I. LOVE. LOVE. I love giving it. I love receiving it. And, most of all I love seeing it. If I could spend a day ANYWHERE, it would be the arrivals terminal of an airport (and I felt that way long before Love Actually stole my idea). For me, this is the day I get to remind my special people how much I adore them, but lately, it’s been more about reminding people how much they should love themselves. In my line of work, I meet hundreds of people who are motivated to change for the better, and through conversations I am constantly reminded of how often we allow the negative self talk to take over our internal dialogue and let it seep into the deepest corners of our brain to the point where it begins to reflect in our day-to-day decision making and self worth. Well, y’all…guess what? Valentine's Day is THE day to let love take over, and I’m sharing my favourite ways to show yourself some LOVE this Valentine’s Day (and every day after, I hope).
Write YOURSELF a Love Letter Remember how excited you would get when you got a Valentine’s Day card in school as a child? No? Just me? Ok..WELL…I remember waiting all day for that moment when we got to exchange cards and see the smiles and hugs that filled the classroom. Kindness is contagious, so why not turn that kindness inward for a change? Start your day with a letter of appreciation to yourself. It may be uncomfortable to celebrate YOU today, but I challenge you to sit through that discomfort and highlight the attributes that make you special…because, let’s face it, you are the bomb dot com.
Take an extra five We don’t do this enough, so if you need Valentine’s Day as an excuse, then by all means… use it. Even with the best of intentions, the day can speed by and before you know it, you’ve worked, fed the kids, walked the dogs, prepped your meals and it’s bedtime. But, if you look closely, there are moments in your everyday routine in which you can be just a little more present. Spend an extra five minutes in the shower, uninterrupted, to just be. Close your eyes, and just breathe. Start your work-from-home day with a special morning routine that gives you an extra 20 minutes to put on your your favourite tunes, and just listen. Take an extra five and go pick up a coffee from your local coffee shop to support a small business.…away from your desk, phone no where in sight. The emails and phone calls can wait five minutes. I promise.
Say ‘Thank You’ with Greens Obviously, I had to bring up food. Valentine’s Day is all about chocolate, typically. I am the last person to tell you NOT to enjoy a sweet somethin’ somethin’ today, but since we’re on the topic of self love, we all know how major a role nutrition plays in making the body feel like a million buckeroos. Create that romantic meal experience at home this year – no reservation required. Spend the evening cooking a delicious, wholesome meal, full of color, and by all means, light those candles, pull out those crystal champagne flutes that are collecting dust and make an event out of it! Whether you’re enjoying a meal with a loved one, your family, your dog/cat/bird, or your fabulous self, throw on a Jamie Oliver Youtube video and indulge in a healthy, delicious, meal made with 50% colourful veggies and 100% love.
Go to sleep an hour earlier Ok, ok. I know….this one is tough. Or is it? Raise your hand if the last hour of your day is spent on your phone, iPad, or computer just….perusing. (I’m raising my hand.) What if you made your bed with your fancy sheets tonight, put on your silky PJ’s (we all have them, am I right?) and let yourself sink into those comfy sheets a little earlier this evening? Create that five-star hotel vibe in the comfort of your own home – your body will thank you. There is no better way to spoil yourself than with 60 minutes of extra z’s.
I don’t know about you, but if my day had even one of the above in it, I would feel pretty darn fantastic. I sincerely wish all of you a Valentine's Day FULL of all the love you can handle, because you deserve it. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have a Hugh Grant movie to watch.
Happy Love Day!