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The Single Girl’s Guide to Surviving Valentine’s Day

For starters, don’t listen to Adele or watch The Notebook. Just don’t.

It’s that time of year again. A time where everywhere you look there’s overpriced chocolate in heart-shaped boxes, red roses by the dozen, and giant teddy bears that are nice in theory but, seriously, where would you put it? You’re not bitter because you’re single on Valentine’s Day, you’re annoyed because Valentine’s Day is the lamest of all holidays. You know relationships and romance don’t happen the way they do in Nicholas Sparks movies and you’d rather watch paint dry than watch The Notebook. You know that your worth is not measured by your romantic life and you don’t need a boyfriend to feel validated. You’re an independent girl, so how do you survive this miserable holiday with dignity?

DO: Go out with your girlfriends.

Nothing says girl power like a “Gal”entine’s Day celebration with your gal pals. Single or not, you don’t need a man to have fun. Plan a day to get brunch and spend the morning with your best friends and bottomless mimosas. Or have a movie night and watch anything besides a romantic comedy.

DON’T: Lay in bed all day.

With depression and social anxiety, it’s difficult to find the motivation to get out of bed but you’ll feel better once you do. Have a plan for your day and have some fun. Go to a coffee shop you’ve never been before, make dinner for yourself with a new recipe, go to the library and pick out a book you’ve never read before then find a nice spot in the park to read. Do something you love. Valentine’s Day is a day of love and you should celebrate the things you love and the love you have for yourself.

DO: Buy yourself flowers

You don’t need a boyfriend to buy you flowers and when you buy flowers for yourself, you’re guaranteeing that you’ll get the white tulips you actually like instead of boring red roses. Seriously, how cliche can you get? A bright bouquet of flowers is exactly what you need to brighten up your day and you don’t have to wait until Valentine’s Day to do that! Get flowers for yourself any day of the week. You deserve it!

DON’T: Buy flowers from big corporate stores

If you’re going to treat yourself to some flowers, why not help out a small business too? Sure you might be able to get a cheap bouquet from your closest superstore but if you buy your flowers from a small flower shop, you’ll get a bouquet that’s made with love and isn’t that what this holiday is all about?

DO: Take a yoga class

The last thing you want to do on Valentine’s Day is stay in bed all day watching Netflix. You’ve got to get outside and do something fun and beneficial. Yoga is the perfect way to get exercise and clear your mind at the same time. Start your day off right by meeting up with a friend to do yoga at a nearby studio and then go grab a coffee together. Or you can do some yoga at home. Just put on some calming music and relax. You owe it to yourself.

DON’T: Visit your ex-boyfriend’s social media.

Just don’t do it. You might think of all of the good times you had together but there was a reason why you broke up. Don’t romanticize a relationship that wasn’t meant to be. Stalking exes is always a bad idea but especially on Valentine’s Day. You might feel vulnerable but you’re not! You’re strong and independent. Leave the past in the past.

DO: Go to a museum.

If you want to be alone, there is no better place to be than a museum. There are a lot of museums out there that are free or offer discounted fees to college students so make sure you bring your student I.D. There are many to choose from and there may even be museums in your city that you didn’t know about. There is honestly nothing more calming than enjoying an art museum on your own.

DON’T: Listen to Adele.

The worst thing you can do to yourself is listen to a gut-wrenching breakup song by Adele. They’re so emotional you’ll end up missing a non-existent ex. It happens to the best of us. Making yourself cry over silly things isn’t a good practice in self-care.

Again, this is bad for you today.

DO: Join a friendly meet-up app

It’s hard to make friends when you become an adult and it seems like the only way to meet new people is through dating apps. Good thing there are plenty of new apps that help you find your future best friend. The Hey! VINA app is the newest and best way to meet gals in your area who are ready to hit the town, catch a movie, or meet up for coffee. You can also use the Meetup app to find fun and interesting groups and clubs near you.

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Instead of wallowing in self-pity, spend the day doing things that you enjoy. Be kind to yourself, celebrate how much you’ve accomplished in the past year, and plan how you’re going to accomplish even more in the coming year.

Alyssa is a Los Angeles-based writer who began writing at the age of nine when she created a literary masterpiece about a dog who could fly. You can find more of her work at alyssamerwin.com.

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