Valentine’s Day is fast approaching, which usually means a flurry of flowers, chocolates and dinner reservations with our beloveds. If you’re lucky, there might be serious intimacy on the cards. I love Valentine’s Day because it reminds us of what’s really important.
However, if you’re only making time for love on one day, you’re missing the point. I encourage you to step away from the expectation to buy expensive gifts and deliver grand gestures for Valentine’s Day. You can still do this, of course, but what’s most important is to put more intention into your intimate connection(s). Truly celebrating love means doing it every day. Smaller gestures, expressed in your ordinary days and weeks, can have a much more powerful impact on your love life over time.
So what are you waiting for?
Here’s how to bring a little bit of Valentine’s Day to your everyday life:
1. Radical listening. Practise listening with intent. Don’t interrupt. Really try to understand what your partner is saying and the points they’re trying to make. And when they’re done, acknowledge what they’ve shared.
2. It’s in the eyes. Hold more eye contact, even in simple conversations and interactions.
3. Hug it out. Start and end each day with a minimum 30-second hug (in stillness, no romantic touch at this point).
4. All about appreciation. Think of something you love and appreciate about your partner. Give voice to it or send them a message (if you’re on the shy side, sending a message is a great alternative). Start small if need be.
5. Share your feelings. Share how you feel – the ups, the downs, the shades in between (again, in person or using technology if that’s easier for you).
6. Perform an AOS. Perform an act of service (AOS) for your partner. This could be washing the dishes, doing the shopping, making dinner, picking up or dropping off the kids, or even just making your partner a cup of tea or coffee.
7. Take time out. Do something on your own that makes you feel good, like catching up with a friend, going out for breakfast or to the movies, reading a book, or something else that brings you happiness. Remember, pleasure starts with yourself.
8. Reflect. Reflect on where you are in life. Where do you want to be when it comes to work, your relationship, or anything else? Take stock of where you’d like to focus.
9. Get sexy. Tell your partner what you love about them sexually. Be fun, flirtatious, sincere, bold – it’s up to you, as long as it’s loving and genuine.
10. State your needs. Communicate one need that relates to intimacy and sex. For example: ‘I’d like more touch’ or ‘I’d like more passionate kissing’. Of course, you can be more explicit.
Of these gestures, steps 1–8 can be done in any order but if you need to, build up to 9 and 10.
Why not start today with just one of these gestures, or whatever is comfortable for you, and then work at bringing more into your days? Treat it as a fun experiment and see what comes up.
You might find it challenging at first, perhaps a little awkward. But you may also find they help you to discover new and exciting things about your partner, cultivate closeness and spark a deeper romantic and sexual connection.
This is my hope for you – happy Valentine’s Day.