No matter what your feelings about the holiday are, it’s helpful to keep in mind that the origin of Valentine’s Day has more to do with bravery than romantic love. According to legend, Emperor Claudius II decided that single men were better warriors and so he made marriage illegal for young men. Saint Valentine objected to the law, and he continued to perform marriages until he was put to death for his transgressions.
Swan notes that when she counsels people on the subject of love, she keeps this origin story in mind. “I teach them to be willing to go beyond their comfort zone on a daily basis so that they have an elevated life with or without a mate.”
If the holiday really is a celebration of love, why not turn some of that action your way? Atkinson is all about self-romancing: “Order in a favorite meal. Pour a glass of wine. Take a bubble bath.”
And at the end of the night? Imagine what you’d like your life to look like next year on this date—with or without someone beside you.
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