There are many among us who do not completely relate to a commercialised Valentine’s Day, and feel it’s quite funny how business interests try and sell ‘romance’ in tacky heart-shaped boxes!
Nevertheless, it doesn’t mean you cannot celebrate the day of love without falling for the obvious trappings of overpriced dine-outs and predictable gifts. A day dedicated to love is a great opportunity to cherish all your relationships, including the often-ignored one you have with yourself.
We present 6 really cool ideas that can make this Valentine’s Day unforgettable.
1. Go beyond obvious gifts
Now every couple around you will head to their favourite restaurant or gift chocolates this Valentine’s Day. Rather, you can choose to make the day really special for your beloved by being extra-sensitive to things that will make him/her enormously happy.
Try to figure out if there’s something that your beloved used to be really passionate about but just doesn’t get the time to pursue it nowadays, and gift accordingly. Enrolling your partner for music lessons, acting classes, painting workshops or buying him/her a musical instrument, a canvas or a badminton racquet can be really significant gifting options this Valentine’s Day. And that’s not all, keep motivating them for the entire year to always find time for these activities.
You can also use the day to begin learning something that both of you are crazy about — like Spanish language or even kickboxing!
2. Spread some joy around you
Love is the most powerful force that binds us to our world. Take some time off from your daily schedule to spread some joy by heading to a home for the elderly or a children’s welfare centre, etc. along with your partner or friends or just by yourself.
You can choose to gift them chocolates or crayons or home-cooked meals or whatever you like, but your greatest gift to them will be your time.
Talk to them, understand what ails them, and see how you can continue helping them in the long term. For the talented ones among you, see if you can put up an intimate musical performance, an impromptu dance or a session of jokes.
You may not be able to solve all their problems, but if you’re successful in helping them forget their woes even for a short span of time, if you can just make them smile, you’ll have a memorable Valentine’s Day.
3. Surprise your parents
The strains of the modern life can often weaken our core ties, but Valentine’s Day can actually mark a new beginning. If your parents stay in the same city, see if you can pay them a surprise visit after work or college. If they do not, send them a surprise gift or a bouquet with a ‘Thank-You’ note!
And if ‘Mom-I-need-to-hang-up-now’ has become too common a line, pick up the phone and have a long, quality conversation with your parents.
If you stay with them, cook them a meal, take them shopping or just play a movie of their choice on TV.
4. Feed stray animals or birds
Well, that’s an easy one. Do some online research, and prepare some healthy food for stray animals or birds in your locality this Valentine’s Day. Just make sure you serve them something fresh and not just leftovers.
You and your partner can also visit some animal shelter during the day. A dog wagging its tail in appreciation or a bunch of pigeons cooing after being fed are some of the most beautiful things in life. Isn’t it?
5. Plant saplings
Our worsening environment probably deserves a lot more love to sustain us and our future generations. Planting some saplings in your neighbourhood and vowing to take care of them regularly can be an awesome Valentine’s Day activity.
You can also volunteer for eco-friendly groups like Free Tree Society Kuala Lumpur to help them in their different ventures.
6. Thank yourself in a meaningful way
Lastly, make it a point to celebrate your love for yourself this Valentine’s Day — which is not the same thing as being selfish! While it’s great if you’re planning to gift yourself a better phone or some spa pampering, you’ll be wiser to go for something more meaningful in a bid to reward yourself.
Make a pledge this Valentine’s Day to:
- Quit a bad habit like smoking or gambling forever
- Relook at your diet and start exercising, cycling or swimming
- Give your mobile phone/laptop some break and head out more often to talk to different people, participate in outdoor games, etc.
- Take steps to embolden your savings and diversify your investments
These are just generic examples, but the point is that you use this day reinvigorate your love for yourself, your beloved, your community and your world.
Wish you all a very special Valentine’s Day!
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