Surviving a single Valentines Day
You're single on Valentines Day, so what should you do?
Sink into some depressive, do-nothing day and reflect on your singleness? Or take the high road?
As a matchmaker, I have seen how difficult it can be for singles to cope with Valentines Day and they often fall into despair. They needn't and shouldn't do so.
If you find Valentines Day tough, here are five steps to help:
1. Don't be alone. I know it's difficult being out of a relationship when everyone else appears to be receiving chocolates and roses, but simply joining up with other friends, single or otherwise, can not only help your attitude and sense of loneliness, but you can also have a good time without a partner.
Remember that being single is not a crime. Nor does it add up to a lifetime sentence for you. You should enjoy the great things you have - your family, friends, job, health. Use the day to celebrate what you have, not what you haven't.
If you feel up to it, attend an event for singles, which many bars and other venues provide. Choose wisely though because they vary greatly.
2. Plan something fun. If you think the day might be a downer for you, plan ahead to do something. Keep busy. Plan an outing. Have friends round. Avoid all the couples-focused goings-on and try to do something that will keep you busy and happy.
You may want to stay away from the happy couples populating restaurants, or you might go along with friends and show that you're happy being single, thank you.
3. Work on your single status. OK, you're single and not altogether enjoying it. But try and plan something for the future, too. Work on what you might do to change your single status. Do you want to work on something about yourself - your hobbies (meeting more people), your body (fitness, weight loss, and style changes), your conversation (striking a more confident manner with people you don't know).
Take some time to consider what your strengths and weaknesses are, just like a business analysis but without the cold-hearted edge. Be kind on yourself, but be realistic and plan to do something to make you even more confident.
4. Give yourself a treat. You deserve it, after all. Buy wine, a tasty treat, or a special movie. Spend a little money on yourself and pat yourself on the back for all the good things you are and the good things that lie ahead.
I have learned that the very best way for anyone to find a partner is to feel good about yourself and your life.
5. Have the right attitude. Having a positive attitude and good self-belief is basic to feeling great about who you are and where you're going.
So much of dating and matchmaking is about attitude. You should reinforce your own self-belief and express gratitude for who you are and what you can be.
A positive attitude beats cologne, perfume, roses and chocolates on February 14. Just remember that Valentines Day is an annual event.
If you're single this year, there's no reason to believe you'll be single next year as well. Unless you want to, of course.