By Taylor Ward

Ah, Valentine’s Day. You either love it or hate it, and your predilection toward one or the other usually depends on your relationship status.

There are several legends that give rise to the love holiday, but the one I’m going to tell you about is probably the most well-known. It is that of Valentine a priest in third century Rome who was put to death because he wouldn’t stop marrying people after it had been outlawed by the emperor who thought that single men make better soldiers.

There were rumors that the Christian church decided to celebrate St. Valentine on February 14 because it was a day before the pagan holiday of Lupercalia a fertility festival.

I can imagine that the church’s delicate sensibilities were a bit overwhelmed; so true to human nature, they tried to suppress and change what they didn’t understand. Eventually, the pagan holiday was outlawed, and St. Valentine’s Day began slowly evolving into the romantic holiday we know today.

Now, I’m sure that history lesson didn’t bolster any of you young, single women out there. It sucks to feel like you will never find your perfect someone — believe me, I get it. I should know, having spent 21 years as a single lady. But what I recently came to understand is that you don’t need a significant other to make Valentine’s Day your day.

So, slip on your most comfy pajamas, grab your go-to snack and burrito yourself into your favorite blanket. I’m gonna drop some knowledge.

Unfortunately, Valentine’s Day falls on a Wednesday this year, so you have to be a little creative, especially if you have school or work. My first piece of advice is to let yourself get plenty of sleep. Go to bed early the day before Valentine’s so you can wake up relaxed and refreshed, ready to start your day of you!

Getting lots of sleep the night before makes it easier for your body to wake up early in a natural manner. More time in the morning means more self-pampering time. You can sit down and do your hair and make-up and won’t be rushing out the door. You can make your favorite breakfast and actually enjoy it, thereby setting the tone for the rest of your day!

During school and/or work, make sure to take little time-outs here and there to remind yourself of how awesome you are. I’ve listed a few phrases you could start with.

  1. “You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection” – Buddha
  2. “Never bend your head. Always hold it high. Look the world straight in the face.” – Helen Keller
  3. “To love oneself is the beginning of a lifelong romance” – Oscar Wilde
  4. “I am smart. I am kind. I am gentle. I am fierce. I am strong.” – Taylor Ward

After school and/or work, the fun really begins.

This is where “treat yo’ self” is going to come in. Think about your favorite restaurant and order takeout from that place. Take a warm shower, grab your nail polish and give yourself a mani/pedi, because girl you deserve it!

And when your takeout arrives, snuggle down into your pjs and blanket, and binge watch these shows with strong female leads:

  2. Marvel’s Agent Carter (because who doesn’t want to watch a woman give a hearty beat down to her ego-centric and sexist male counterparts?)
  3. Gilmore Girls (the fast talking, quick walking, coffee drinking mother-daughter duo can never go wrong)
  4. Quantico (because, again, awesome crime-fighting female)

After you’ve had your fill of these inspiring and empowered women, snuggle up in your comfy bed and drift off to sleep knowing that you are an amazing woman with incredible gifts and so much talent. Fall asleep knowing that you made Valentine’s Day yours because it doesn’t just belong to the couples.

It belongs to the idea of love itself. So, love yourself because no holiday can determine your worth without your consent.