It’s that time of year again, folks. When we turn to the one we love and shower them with affection, warmth and love. When we take time to plan something they will really enjoy. When we reflect on what they need to feel cherished and pampered. If this all sounds like it would be wonderful to receive, as well, why not be the one to give it to yourself?

Even if you already have a valentine this year, also try out being your own. There is no other person with whom you spend every single second of your life and take care of around the clock—and if it feels as if you do this for other people in your life, then you definitely need to treat yourself this Valentine’s Day!

The practice of self-care may seem like something we only need to do every once in a while, yet it should be a daily occurrence—rather, a priority! And try not to get into the trap of calling self-care an “indulgence.” As much as certain chocolate commercials would like to believe, we all deserve moments to ourselves and engagement in the relaxing, satisfying, and exciting activities we enjoy.

So, how can we use Valentine’s Day as a starting point to practicing daily self-care? If you are unsure where to start, then begin by asking yourself what you would do for someone you love.

What is it that you need? Either by profession, family role, personality or survival instinct, we all have the capability of empathy. We tune in to what others need so often throughout the day that we may forget to check in with ourselves. Asking ourselves the simple question “What is it that I need right now?” allows us to address what we may be lacking. This Valentine’s Day, what will you need? Quiet time away from work? A delicious, satisfying meal? Belly laughs while watching your favorite comedy? A long, aromatic, muscle-soothing bath soak? Whatever it is, give it to yourself.

What would make you truly happy today? For the people we love, this question comes to our minds with a smile because it can be so satisfying to bring happiness to others. But this February 14th is about you, so what would bring you happiness? Whether it’s planning an excursion, getting in touch with an old friend, organizing your emails or photo albums, enjoying your favorite take-out dessert, or anything else—treat yourself to it.

What do you need to do on a daily basis to remain fulfilled? Lastly, tune in with what worked this Valentine’s Day as you took care of yourself. Does that morning green smoothie energize you and make you feel wonderful about your health? Keep doing it! What about that obscure exercise class you took that left you exhausted, yet exhilarated? Keep doing it! Was spending the afternoon hiking in the park by yourself just the ticket to clear your mind? You get the drill. Find what works for you to stay happy and fulfilled and make it as important a priority as any other task on your to-do list. Be the very best valentine you’ve ever had!

Source:  by Katie Medlock