The Best Ways To Practice Self-Love This Valentine's Day, According To Experts

by Julia Guerra

If Valentine’s Day planning for you means finding the perfect dress, making the fanciest of fancy dinner reservations, and catering to — and only to — your S.O., you’ve got this holiday all wrong, honey. Listen, I get it; my husband and I are super cheese-tastic when it comes to spoiling each other on V-Day, and there is absolutely nothing wrong with celebrating the love you share for one another. But what about the love you have for yourself? On top of the date night details, you should also be figuring out how to practice self-love on Valentine’s Day. It doesn’t matter if you’ve been single, are fresh on the market, or spoken for, Feb. 14 is a day to observe love in all forms, which means showing ourselves adoration and care is something we all should be prioritizing, too.

It's really disappointing when you think about how we approach this idea of self-care, and self-love. Things like taking a lengthy bubble bath, lighting a sweet-smelling candle, or licking the frosting off a fork full of rich, decadent chocolate cake are treats we only "allow" ourselves to indulge in once a week, month, maybe even less frequently. This Valentine's Day, no matter what your relationship status, I encourage you to put self-love first by incorporating any of the following suggestions into your plans. After all, you deserve it.

Write Yourself A Love Note

No need to try and squeeze your way through all the other procrastinators huddled around the sappy cards and chocolate boxes at the convenient store this year, because the only love you’ll be sending is the one you sign and send to yourself. Yes, it does sound corny, but this is the type of exercise that can result in all the freakin’ feels.

A few weeks ago, during one of my at-home yoga practices, Adriene Mishler of Yoga With Adriene, instructed anyone following along with her video to stop mid-mountain pose and think of one reason why you love yourself. It sounds simple enough, right? I’ll be honest with you, I could not think of one single thing. And this isn’t because I don’t love myself, rather it’s because when do I really stop to consider what it is about me that I truly admire and appreciate?

Behavioral scientist and relationship coach, Clarissa Silva tells Elite Daily that by documenting all the things you love about yourself (and it can be literally anything from how you cook eggs to your sense of humor) will “help increase your self-esteem and self-worth.”

Netflix and Chill TF Out

The best part about celebrating V-Day solo has to be having total control over the remote. Aleen Kuperman, CEO and Co-Founder of entertainment website Betches says her plans this year include a bottle of wine, her favorite sushi, lighting up her Say No To Plans candle, and watch hours on hours of Netflix.

“Staying in is key,” Kuperman says, because anyone who is out “is super cheesy and annoying anyway.” Keeping it casual by celebrating at home allows you to set the mood, not the other way around.

Go On An Instagram Hiatus

Social media is the devil. OK, I’m kidding, but Instagram is literally the last thing you want to spend your time on when you’re tending to self-care because FOMO is a thing and ain’t nobody got time for that, boo.

Of course, if you want to hop on and share a little peak at the awesome psychedelic bath bomb you’ll be soaking in, be my guest, but for all intents and purposes, filmmaker and mental health activist Elyse Fox tells Elite Daily you should avoid getting sucked into the black hole of scrolling if you’re feeling anxious.

Cook A Meal For Yourself

Personally, I love spending hours in the kitchen. Whether I’m trying my hand at a new recipe, or just seasoning vegetables and sticking them in the oven, I find working with my hands and food to be extremely therapeutic.

Life coach Eric B. McCurdy, MCC tells Elite Daily that food connects to our mind, and our mind to our soul. “Enjoy the process of creating and smelling and tasting something new,” she suggests. “If you are on your own, enjoy your meal while watching a new show or movie, or just listening to great music with a new book.”

Try Meditating

I’ve been practicing meditation on and off for the past few years now and can honestly say the rumors are true; you’ll connect the body and mind on an entirely different level. There’s a kind of vulnerability that shines through when you spend time completely by yourself, because it’s just you and your thoughts and the quiet. It can be intimidating, but it can also be really beautiful because you’ll become better acquainted with your voice and true feelings.

If this is your first time giving the practice a fair shot, I suggest giving Just Sit by The Well Daily co-founders Sukey and Elizabeth Novogratz a read. The meditation guidebook is basically an introduction to the craft, and acts as a secondary resource to building and strengthening the relationship you have with yourself.

Skip The Gym And Exercise At-Home

This is totally going to depend on personal preference. Some people prefer the hustle and bustle of the gym, but once in a while I think it can be really valuable to separate yourself from the subconscious pressure and competitive nature that comes with the atmosphere of the gym, and really spend some one-on-one time with your body.

Kara Liotta, Flybarre’s Creative Director, suggests giving barre without the bar a try. Things like alternating lateral lunches with a deep reach, v-sit arm extensions, and forearm planks will get your blood flowing, and your endurance up. Whatever workout you choose – from barre to Pilates to gentle yoga stretches – you’ll feel amazing knowing you did something for your body.

Pamper Yourself With Wellness Treatments Before Bed

Don’t get me wrong; I love a good sheet mask, bubble bath, mani – you name it, I’ve treated myself with it. But self-love isn’t just about beauty treatments, it’s also about the little, holistic details you can add to your routine to enhance your lifestyle.

Essential oil fanatics rave over their aromatherapy treatments, but did you know massaging essential oils into the soles of your feet can better your sleep? According to a representative from Saje, because the various thickness of skin on the bottom of our feet absorb essential oils quickly, applying their Stress Release tonic a half-hour before bed and snuggling your soles into a pair of cozy socks “is great sleep support.”