Valentine’s Day is a holiday celebrated by people around the world. Though this day of love has increasingly become commercialized over the decades, it’s still possible to celebrate and be mindful this Valentine’s Day.
Valentine’s Day, named after a Catholic saint, has a unique history. A priest named Valentine performed secret marriage ceremonies for young soldiers at a time when the Roman Emperor, Claudius II, had made it illegal for the young men to marry. From this humble beginning, Valentine’s Day has expanded into a very commercialized holiday. Today Valentine’s Day is a $20 billion holiday, the most expensive holiday after Christmas. While there’s nothing wrong with buying jewelry or chocolates for a loved one, it’s important to stay mindful of the holiday’s true significance: love.
Here are five ways to be mindful this Valentine’s Day:
Say what’s on your heart
Sending a message of love is popular on Valentine’s Day. According to the Greeting Card Association, one billion Valentine’s Day cards are sent every year. Though most people love receiving cards, a personal message can truly warm their heart. This Valentine’s Day forgo the traditional card and take a more mindful approach. Call a loved one and list all the reasons why you love them. Or send an e-card with a personal poem.
Give your pets a lot of love
Valentine’s Day is an occasion to celebrate everyone you love, including your pets. According to the National Retail Federation consumers spend over $300 million on Valentine’s gifts for their pets. While gifts are great, little Max and Mr. Fluffy do not require a fancy presents. This Valentine’s Day why not give your beloved pet more of what they really want: your attention (and cuddles).
Make your Valentine’s Day green
Over 100 million of roses are delivered on Valentine’s Day. While a decorative bouquet will put a smile on your sweetheart’s face, it can also be costly for the environment. Seventy-eight percent of the cut flowers bought in the U.S. come from other countries like Colombia and Ecuador. And they are grown with the use of powerful pesticides. The environmental consequences of the pesticides and the shipment of these flowers can be costly. This year be mindful of the environment by giving your loved one a beautiful potted, flowering plant or by buying an organic bouquet from a local grower.
Show your love for your community
Your family, friends, and pets aren’t the only ones who deserve a little love on this holiday. This Valentine’s Day show your love for your community by helping others. Donate money to charities that are close to your heart. Find a local blood drive or host a fundraiser and give the funds to the American Heart Association.
After you’ve shared and expressed your love for others don’t forget to shower yourself with love. Treat yourself to a delicious treat from your local bakery. Take a long relaxing bath. Or buy yourself a small gift. Loving and nurturing yourself is important for a Mindful life.