How To Enjoy Valentine's Day, Whether or Not You Have a Valentine!

Venice Beach Valentine’s Day Sign

Valentine’s Day Ideas without Hallmark or Roses

Valentine’s Day is the Worst.

Whether you’re in a relationship or happily single, Valentine’s Day is more for Hallmark, and restaurants, and florists, than it is for you! Even people who are in a happy relationship are often disappointed on Valentine’s Day! If you are single, Valentine’s Day can be a depressing reminder that you haven’t yet met The One. Here’s something you should know:

Most Adult Americans Are Single and Not In a Relationship.

If you are not in a relationship on Valentine’s Day, you are in great company! Back in 2014 the number of Americans who are single surpassed the number who are paired up, and 26% are not in a relationship or even looking to be in one!

Here are 5 things you can do to enjoy Valentine’s Day if you are single:

1. Plan a get-together with your friends.

Not one of those angry anti-Valentine’s Day affairs, just something fun, where you can enjoy each other’s company. Order out and watch a movie, host a game night, or organize a potluck.

Valentine’s Day on Venice Beach

2.  Practice some serious self-care

Book a facial or a massage, or just take a long, luxurious bath with candles and music. Indulge in your favorite consumable treat—rich ice cream, expensive Champagne, cheap Chinese. You don’t have to admit to anyone that you love the spicy eggplant from Panda Express— Only the delivery guy has to know!

3. Do something for someone else.

Pass out food or inexpensive toiletries to the homeless. Where I live in Venice Beach I only have to walk about a block, to find people camping on the sidewalk, so it’s easy.

If you live farther away from the homeless population, you can always put together a bag of clothing or household items for the local thrift shop. Or you can go to a home for older or differently-abled adults and just talk with them. Let them tell you their stories and share their memories. See if your local hospital has a program where you can sit with people who don’t have any visitors. Be creative; how would you like to help someone in need in a way that uses your own particular skills and interests.

yoga on Venice Beach

4.  Do something physical. Because endorphins.

My favorite is yoga, because of the good vibes. You could also go to the gym, or go for a run. If you are too exhausted to leave home once you get there after work, try a short class from an online site like You can even do a Yin Yoga class, which is mostly stretching and restful, but still will bring you valuable energy.

5.  Laugh a little.

Humor is known to not only make you feel better, but also to actually have a positive effect on your physical health. Watch your favorite comedian do standup, or just watch those “funny baby” videos that crack you up. It doesn’t matter; just laugh.

Finally, a warning: Stay off of social media on Valentine’s Day!!

But seriously. Anyone who is having a good Valentine’s Day will be constantly posting on Insta so that you can see how totally wonderful their relationship is. What would you hope to accomplish by scrolling through your friends’ stories? And you know that pic of your ex with his arm around some other girl is going to randomly come up on your feed and make you feel miserable..

If despite all your efforts, you can’t help feeling fairly miserable, try to remember that Valentine’s Day is only 24 hours. The thing about feelings is that they don’t last forever, even if in the moment it seems like they’ll never change.

If You’re In a Relationship on Valentine’s Day...

couple on bicycles in Mar Vista

In the very best case scenario, your incredibly imaginative partner dreams up a special way to show you they love you—they cook a gourmet dinner, or plan a special outing. But Valentine’s Day is in the middle of the week this year, and most people are working. Here in Los Angeles they probably have a serious commute home, where they arrive exhausted and too late to prepare a meal or go on an adventure. Maybe they are able to take you out to a ridiculously over-priced dinner with faux sentimental touches, which is lovely, if not individualized.

Far more often, though, Valentine’s Day is a setup for disappointment. Hallmark sets the expectations high, and most of the guys I know are either worried they won’t get it right (and many don’t) or they are ignoring it all together—either intentionally or unintentionally.

My own beloved and I have pretty much boycotted all the Valentine’s folderol after our first one together, when he made an extremely well-intentioned but bumbling effort to impress me, and I (the perfectionist of our couple—hey, it’s sometimes a good thing, right?) was singularly unimpressed.

We have decided that just being together and not being distracted by anything else for the entire evening is special enough for the 14th.

Here’s My Valentine’s Day Advice: Plan Something Together.

If you are in a relationship, I would suggest that you forgo the surprises. Plan ahead with your Sweetheart how you want to spend the day or evening, and make a conscious decision together about just how special you really want or need the day to be.

Are you still in your Valentine’s Day funk after Valentine’s is long over?

Maybe therapy can help! Give me a call at 323-999-1537, or send me an email at, for your FREE phone or in-office consultation. We will have a chat about your specific situation, and how I can help. I have helped hundreds of people feel better about themselves and build healthy relationships, and I can help you, too!