Valentine’s Day is right around the corner.
I’m a little disappointed that this candy-riddled day falls on a weekend. Since I work with a lot of youngsters, I have a special place in my heart for these kinds of fun days that can spark different flavors of processing and exploration. Therapists enjoy a smile-worthy shake up from time to time.
The narrative revolving around this rosy-colored day has always irked me. Our culture embraces such a linear take on love, and I am rolling my eyes as I type this. We can celebrate nine types of knowledge but only one type of love? Wake me up when this snooze fest is over.
But in all seriousness
Valentine’s Day could use a reframe.
Intrinsic and extrinsic motivation are frequently thematic points of conversation in the therapy room. We live in a world that hyper-focuses on extrinsic joys and motivation yet neglects intrinsic or self-reflected anything. Our culture thoroughly draws attention to the latest and the greatest thingamabobs and the burst of joy that could ensue if one were to obtain such doohickies or accomplishments. Just turn on the TV or glance at social media and they will prove my point.
Same goes for love. We tend to place a price tag on love, just as we do on the whose-its and whats-it in the store. I frequently hear “If I could just lose 10 more pounds…” or “If I would have tried harder…”
Rip that price-tag off!
Genuine and authentic love is priceless. We are inherently worthy of this love for the mere fact that we are uniquely us. Layering on the materialistic hoopla can distract away from the love that’s meant to be celebrated not just one cloudy February day, but every single damn day.
So, here’s a thought…
Recognize the intrinsic love within your world as well as the extrinsic. If you have a honey, share those extra words of affirmation and carve out time to embrace cherished moments of connection. However, don’t forget to celebrate the day by weaving in some self-love and compassion, however this looks for you. Each soul is worthy of this kind of love.