Valentine’s Day doesn’t need to be only about cards, chocolates and flowers. If you cringe every time a delivery of red roses arrives, or are planning on just sleeping through it all then now is the time to make Valentine’s your own with a day of complete self-love. Whether you are coupled up or happily single, here are seven ways to look after yourself – as they say, ‘to truly love another, we must first love ourselves,’ so there are no excuses!

 

Love Your Body

We often feel under pressure to have a so-called perfect body, with women in particular constantly criticising their shapes and sizes. Well, we say ‘no!’ to this; Without mentioning your appearance at all, make a list of ten positive attributes about yourself and reflect on these. Considering your skin replaces itself once a month, your stomach lining every five days and your skeleton every three months, we think the body is a pretty extraordinary place that deserves lots of appreciation!

 

Love Your Tummy

There is no better way of practicing self love than treating yourself to your favourite foods. Though every day needn’t be a cheat day, head to our recipe section for healthy twists on treats from chocolate cupcakes to cheesecake, with no added refined sugar or guilt.

 

Love To Dance

Let yourself be totally silly, close the curtains, turn your favourite tunes up loud and move like no-one is watching. This is a great way to let down your guard, getting rid of any built up frustrations and letting those endorphins do their thing!

 

Love To Exercise

Find a method of exercise you enjoy and do it regularly. Whether this is running, barre or boxing, make sure that you are not simply slogging it at the gym and that there are plenty of feel-good hormones involved. Don’t exercise simply to lose weight, we feel at our best when our bodies are healthy and strong, so getting the most out of every workout is important. Fancy trying something new? Call a friend and attempt a class together.

 

Love To Relax

Taking time out for yourself, even if it is only for five minutes, is one of the best ways to show self-love. Run yourself a bath with Epsom salts (magnesium is a proven muscle relaxant), make a cup of tea or pick up your favourite book, take a deep breath, relax, and indulge in some important me-time.

 

Love Your Mind

Mindfulness has been a buzzword in wellness for a while now, and the ever popular app Headspace, described as a ‘gym membership for the mind,’ has countless advantages for your mental and physical health, including lowering stress levels and warding off depression. Use your app for ten minutes a day, or simply try spend some time just being; just closing your eyes and feeling your breath for five minutes will make you relax and bring immediate calm.

 

Love Others

Show some gratitude today, whether it is thanking a friend or partner, giving someone a compliment or donating to charity. If you haven’t spoken to a friend in a while, pick up the phone and call them, you’ll never regret it.

words by Harriet Tisdall

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