Valentine's Day can be many different things to many people. Why not use it to your advantage and bring positive energy into your life. Read on to learn more.
Valentines Day is traditionally viewed as a day of hearts, chocolates and fancy dinners with your beloved. It’s also a day that many women expect to be showered with gift like jewellery, fresh roses and romantic gestures. The reverse side of this is the partner who has to sweat over card choices and often overpriced flowers.
Next let us consider all the unattached persons, the single people.Valentine's Day can be very hard for some single people. Not only is it a day that reminds them of just how single they are, if they have lost their loved one, it only stands to remind them of that loss.
Valentine's Day is also very commercialized. Whether you see this as a good thing or not, the truth is that many businesses rely on the day. Restaurants for example, often create special romantic dinners at higher prices just for Valentine's day. In addition, Valentine's Day gives people with a closed heart who feel obligated to "do something nice" on the day, the means to justify being unromantic, unkind, disingenuous or inconsiderate the rest of the year.
How do you use Valentine's Day to your advantage? Consider this option: Take all the best parts of the day, like kindness, thoughtfulness, compassion, and love, and make an effort to practice them all year long. This works whether you are single, or in a relationship. Treating a person with kindness, compassion and understanding can be done without any elaborate costs. Simple acts that show you care, are the easiest way to make another person feel appreciated and loved.
Making the morning coffee, doing chores, walking the dog, and letting someone sleep, in are all things that show someone that you care about them.
At the office you don’t have to love your co-workers, but you can practice compassion, tolerance and small acts of kindness. Refill the photocopy machine with paper, Tidy up the lunchroom, offer to pick up something for an overworked co-worker when you go to buy your mid day coffee. For co-workers who are difficult to deal with, walking away or not responding with a snarky remark may be the best that you can do, and that is ok, it's a great start.
Practice it with family and friends. Try giving small random acts of kindness to strangers. You can give up your seat on transit to someone in need, or help an elderly person carry a bag. You can hold the door open to the person behind you as you enter a store. Maybe one of these acts of kindness will lead you to meet someone who becomes special in your life, you never know!
Acts of kindness and compassion help make everyone's day better. Consider the person standing behind you in line at the grocery store who has 1-2 items and you have 20, let them go ahead of you. The homeless man you see on the street. You may be wary of giving them money, but you can buy them a hot drink on a cold day. The tired parent who comes onto the bus carrying bags and ushering their small child forward. If you are physically able to, how about offering that exhausted parent your seat instead? Another option is to volunteer at an organization that needs help.
Valentine's Day is symbolized by a heart. Why not open yours and rediscover all that you have to offer others, and maybe by doing so, you will find all that positive energy brings good things back to you.
Does the Festive Season cause you stress because there are too many food temptations? Read more on how you can stop your food cravings and enjoy the Festive Season once again.
Temptations All Around
The festive season is probably the hardest time of year for anyone trying to have a healthier lifestyle. Enticing food temptations are around every corner, from gourmet stores displaying luxurious treats, to co-workers baking goodies and bringing them in to share.
It can be overwhelming and intimidating to try and constantly resist them, especially with well meaning persons encouraging you to have “just a taste” or saying things like “come on, it’s the holidays, one bite won’t kill you!”
It may be true that one bite won’t kill you but it could lead to an avalanche of poor choices and the attitude of defeat~ “well I gave in all last week, so I might as well just give up trying.” How do you stay motivated to resist temptation when you are faced with it every day?
Tapping On Emotional Memories
Commonly called Tapping, EFT (Emotional Freedom Techniques) is a useful and effective tool to help combat food cravings because it works on the emotional memory tied to a food craving. The myth of "willpower" makes it seem that only those with a strong will can avoid all the delightful treats around them. Images of desired foods are very appealing, and are able to sway many people to suddenly want something that had not thought about, like seeing a tray of Festive cookies in front of them and suddenly wanting to eat them! Food cravings are increased when we smell food. Our sense of smell is one of our strongest senses. Smells tie us to emotional memories, like the smell of fresh baked cookies can remind someone of a happy childhood memory like baking with a grandparent.
EFT is a technique, which is most effective when done with a specific goal in mind. When working with food cravings, it is helpful to have that item – for example a cookie, placed in front of the person who wishes to work on their cookie cravings is the first step to combating the desire to eat it. All of our senses are engaged when we are around food. EFT works with all of our senses and our physical and emotional reactions to foods. The sight, smell, taste, sound, touch, and emotional connections to that food are all worked on bit by bit until the desire to eat the unwanted food is greatly reduced or disappears all together.
A Fun Experiment
There is a fun experiment anyone can try to see how much our physical responses and emotional responses play into our food cravings.
1. Have a desired food item (still in its packaging) placed on a table in front of the person who is craving it.
2. Have the person only look at the food in question and ask them how much they are craving it on a scale of 1-10? With 10 being that the have a very urgent desire to eat the food.
3. Ask the person to now handle the food and open the packaging on that food item. Notice the physical and emotional responses the person will exhibit. You will see physical signs such as heart racing, skin flushing, inhaling to smell the food better, and mouth watering. Emotional responses can smiling, happiness, anxiety (guilt) or anger because they are being tempted.
So if this Festive Season you want to try to not to eat every temptation you come across, try EFT. There are many reputable practitioners who can help you overcome your physical and emotional tie to food cravings.