A Valentine's Day Survival Guide for Singles

Valentine’s Day has arrived — a holiday dreaded by singles. If you don’t have a romantic Valentine this year, hold up. Before you grab a bottle of wine, a pint of ice cream, play Adele’s “Someone Like You” on repeat, and start stalking your ex’s Facebook page to see what they’re up to with the new guy/girl, we wanted to share a few things that should make you feel better.

First, Valentine’s Day should be about celebrating love today for anyone important in your life – friends, lovers, family members, pets, coworkers, etc.. So call your parents and tell them you love them. Spend some extra time with your dog at the park. Ask your other single friends to come over and watch 80s movies, or wear that new dress and go out to a karaoke bar. But most importantly, give some attention to you. Sit quietly, close your eyes, think and breathe for 20 min. to clear the mind. Hit the gym (and don’t be afraid to smile at the hottie on the row machine as you walk by). Bust out that guitar you haven’t used since college and play some tunes. Write in a journal and release your thoughts. Cook something new. Use today as a reminder to love yourself and treat yourself well.

Second, recognize that being in a relationship is just more difficult in certain places. The Wall Street Journal just reported on a nationwide study by Facebook ranking 50 major cities on their ease of finding love. The best? Colorado Springs residents statistically have the greatest chance of turning their single status into a relationship. The worst? Coming in dead last is San Francisco – where alternative thinkers challenge traditional relationships, and people tend to prioritize their tech startups over finding and maintaining love. Big cities L.A. and NYC are not far behind. Does that mean you should move to rural Alabama? No, but joining a relationship-minded dating site like Three Day Rule can help weed through people who aren’t serious about finding the one.

Third, remember that being in a relationship doesn’t make you complete or make you happy. You control your happiness. It’s a proven fact that spending time with your support network, doing things that you like to do, and exercising are all examples that generally increase your levels of serotonin, which contributes to feelings of well-being. We all know that there are unhappy relationships out there (we were probably in at least one of them at some point). The grass is always greener, and relationships that seem perfect never are. There is always some degree of imperfection or struggle because you’re dealing with two personalities and sets of desires. As for Valentine’s Day, most people in relationships don’t look forward to the holiday either. There’s the pressure of what to buy or do, the added expense, the contrived appreciation, and anxiety over matching the other’s person’s efforts. It’s important to appreciate and enjoy where you are in life and the benefits it brings. Being single allows you to do a lot more of what you want to do when you want to do it. The Bachelor rather than Monday Night Football, or vice versa. And you have your freedom, so you can flirt and make out with anyone you want.

Today, and every day, try to keep perspective. Treat others and yourself as well. Strive to be the embodiment of love…and the relationship part will follow.