Valentine’s Day is coming up – lovebirds and palentines – follow along with our Vday series right here.

Valentine’s Day, is, in my opinion, kind of a trash holiday. The day itself is supposedly rooted in violence and sacrifices, according to one source, and although it has evolved into an opportunity to show affection, Valentine’s Day is so heavily commercialized that it lost its good intentions a long time ago. Think: White Castle reservations and endless jewelry commercials. The holiday is also promotes, almost exclusively, heteronormative narratives, which isn’t cool either.

If you’re single, Valentine’s Day and the hype around it can be stressful, obnoxious, or even triggering. At the very least, it can feel like a day that you’re not “allowed” to participate in, even though that’s completely false. If dating isn’t your thing, if you’re grumpy about Valentine’s Day in general, or if you’re looking for ways to show yourself love on February 14, we’ve got a list for you.

1. Take yourself out to eat because you earned it

A burger and fries.
[Image description: An image of a cheeseburger and fries]
So what if everyone is dining out with their significant others? If you want a medium-rare steak, by all means, go to Ruth’s Chris and order one. Going to a restaurant alone may seem awkward at first, but after you realize that you’re the best date you could ever ask for, it’s a lot less intimidating.

2. FaceTime a single long-distance friend so you can bitch about Valentine’s Day together

A woman looks at her iPhone.
[Image description: A woman sits on a blanket on the grass and looks at her iPhone.]
Since all your friends who are ~in relationships~ will have no time for you on this bogus holiday, this is the perfect time to reach out to friends who have moved away due to work, school, etc. Complain about those shitty NECCO heart candies that are hard enough to break teeth and the fact that capitalism has ruined love for you.

3. Enjoy a glass (or a bottle) of wine by yourself

A bottle and glass of wine.
[Image description: An image of a bottle and glass of red wine on a table.]
I think many of us would be lying if we said we’d never consumed a whole bottle of sweet red or Riesling (it can’t be just me) by ourselves on a night in after a crappy day at work or a week of exams. Or, you know, just because. No significant other? Perfect. More wine for you. Indulge yourself.

[bctt tweet= “No significant other? Perfect. More wine for you. Indulge yourself.” username=“wearethetempest”]

4. Get a massage to relieve the irritation of seeing happy couples everywhere

A woman about to get a massage.
[Image description: An image of a woman on a massage table with a towel over her back and candles in the background.]
On a more serious note, massages do provide many legitimate benefits. They can ease stress, promote flexibility, decrease migraines, and improve blood circulation. They are great for self-care because they have positive impacts on both your physical and mental health. I love lying around and being pampered, so a massage kills two birds with one stone.

5. Take a salt bath and float away from your problems

A woman floating in water.
[Image description: An image of a woman floating on her back in water.]
No, really, float spas are a thing, and I didn’t know this until recently. Float therapy involves pouring large quantities of Epsom salt into water in pods or dark rooms. The result is that you feel completely weightless when floating. Float therapy is good for meditation, joint pain, and stress relief. I know friends who have done it, and they say it’s trippy but amazing.

[bctt tweet= “I love lying around and being pampered, so a massage kills two birds with one stone.” username=“wearethetempest”]

6. Netflix and chill…

A TV with the movie "Gone Girl."
[Image description: An image of a TV with “Gone Girl” on the main screen.]
…by yourself. While other people are giving cheesy gifts to each other and showing uncomfortable amounts of affection, show your Netflix account some love by starting a new show or catching up on a series that you’ve neglected. There’s no shame in loving your TV and your bed.

7. Get outdoors and away from people

A woman on a paddleboard.
[Image description: An image of a woman on a paddleboard in a body of water.]
If it’s warm enough in your part of the world, rent a kayak or a paddleboard and enjoy some peace and quiet on the water. Take a hike, walk your dog, or escape to a park where you can sit and enjoy the stillness and reflect on how great it is to be single. Other humans can get annoying. It’s refreshing to go off the grid, if only for a couple of hours.

[bctt tweet= “Escape to a park where you can sit and enjoy the stillness and reflect on how great it is to be single.” username=“wearethetempest”]

8. Start a new art project

Hands on clay pottery.
[Image description: An image of hands resting on a piece of clay pottery.]
If you’re creative and know how to paint, draw, sculpt, sew, knit, carve, or any other artsy endeavor, use the evening to begin a new piece of work. The best I can do is draw a second grade-esque stick figure with stringy hair and dots for eyes, so if you have the talent, please let me live vicariously through you.

9. Write your autobiography because you’re incredible

A woman writing in a notebook.
[Image description: A black and white image of a woman writing in a notebook.]
Reflect on how flawless your single self is this Valentine’s Day and write about it so the world knows. Or, of course, just write in general. No matter your chosen genre, it can be difficult to find time to write and edit your work, so being alone on Valentine’s Day gives you a prime opportunity to sit down and make progress.

10. Nap because sleep is better than jewelry from Zale’s

A bed.
[Image description: An image of a bed with light-colored blankets and pillows.]
I’m certainly biased, but let’s be real. No one ever said, “I got more than enough sleep last night!” so why would you pass up an opportunity to crawl into your cozy bed and ignore all your responsibilities?

Spending quality time with yourself on Valentine’s Day can be fun, liberating, and stress-free. If you’re single, take time to love yourself.

  • Lauren Jones

    Lauren Jones received her BA in English Literature from Marquette University. She is interested in reproductive justice, intersectional feminism, and domestic violence. She loves decaf coffee and hates the patriarchy.