The Happiness Connection  

Choose your valentine wisely... you know them well

The person you overlook

For me, Valentine’s Day has always been about more than just romantic love. 

Don’t get me wrong – when I was growing up, I couldn’t wait to have a boyfriend to celebrate with. I can still remember my first Valentine’s bouquet.

I loved getting flowers from husband every year, but I make the day about more than just my special person. I still ask family and close friends to be my Valentines. 

In my head, Valentine’s Day is an opportunity to let everyone you care about know that you love and appreciate them.

This may come from my childhood. My mom always gave me a little something, like heart shaped chocolates on Feb. 14. In elementary school, I gave a card to each of my classmates, and often my mom made heart-shaped cookies for me to share. 

It wasn’t until I got to England that I realized this wasn’t the tradition for everyone. I was given very curious looks as I wished colleagues and students a Happy Valentine’s Day.

For many years, while I was busy showing appreciation for others, there was one person I always overlooked. Me!

How often do you take time to appreciate yourself?

This is a relatively new concept for me. My mom had been raised to put herself last, so that was the model I followed. As I became an independent adult, I didn’t want to get married or have children, because I didn’t want to stop putting myself first in my life.

It turns out you don’t have to choose one or the other. You can have a family, and not give every ounce of love and energy to them leaving nothing for yourself. 

If you are experiencing resistance with this idea, try doing something that will benefit both you and the people around you. Buy yourself some flowers.

Research shows that flowers have therapeutic benefits. 

The American Society for Horticulture Science created a study to see if flowers and foliage were beneficial for surgical patients to have in their rooms. Their findings were overwhelming. 

The people with plants had lower blood pressure, pain levels, anxiety, fatigue, and heart rates than those without any greenery. These patients were also more positive about their experience, which suggests that they also make you feel better.

In another study, researchers looked to see if there were any physiological effects to looking at red roses. They discovered that simply looking at these flowers for three minutes resulted in an improvement of mood and a decrease in stress.

These are only two studies. There are plenty more that back up the benefits of greenery.

Don’t wait for Valentine’s Day to come again to show yourself appreciation, and don’t wait for someone else to buy you flowers. Both these actions are beneficial not only for you, but for the people you share your space with. 

Decide every day to be your own Valentine. 

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About the Author

Reen Rose is an experienced, informative, and engaging speaker, author, and educator. She has worked for over three decades in the world of education, teaching children and adults in Canada and England.

Research shows that happy people are better leaders, more successful, and healthier than their unhappy counterparts, and yet so many people still believe that happiness is a result of their circumstances.

Happiness is a choice. Reen’s presentations and workshops are designed to help you become robustly happy. This is her term for happiness that can withstand challenge and change.

Reen blends research-based expertise, storytelling, humour, and practical strategies to both inform and inspire. She is a Myers Briggs certified practitioner, a Microsoft Office certified trainer and a qualified and experienced teacher.

Email Reen at [email protected]

Check out her websites at www.ReenRose.com, or www.ModellingHappiness.com

The views expressed are strictly those of the author and not necessarily those of Castanet. Castanet does not warrant the contents.

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