It is Valentine’s Day – a day that reminds and celebrates the richness of love. The day will reinforce one of the following statements about you:
- I am in a happy, loving and couple relationship.
- The relationship I am in falls beneath my expectations of what a loving relationship should look like.
- I am alone (and it sucks).
One of the most undervalued, yet affordable and equally available gift that you can give to your partner or friend is the gift of kindness.
On an almost daily basis, I witness couples and individuals who report that whilst they experience conflict and communication difficulties in their couple relationship, they state that they love each other. It is my belief that one of the chief indicators of a loving relationship is kindness. Kindness is being a true and genuine friend to your partner, generous in the giving of oneself and considerate towards your partner’s need.
Where a couple relationship does not feel secure or caring and you feel alone even within your relationship, the invitation that St Valentine’s Day gives to make the intentional effort to show our partner we love them through a romantic gesture or gift is a welcomed opportunity. Being a person who loves the occasional gift, I believe that this can still be a beautiful expression of love when given with thought and intention. However, the notion that a romantic gesture or gift is ‘enough’ to sustain any relationship is false.
If you are unwell and fail to recover swiftly, you will visit your local doctor to receive medical help, whereupon the doctor may write a ‘prescription for treatment’.
Here is your prescription for a flagging couple relationship:
- Use St Valentine’s Day as an opportunity to change the way you treat your partner by doing something ‘special’ – a small gift, a meal together or even a walk along the beach or in a park. Be as creative as you like, just so long as it is something that your partner will enjoy.
- Make it your intention to do, at the very least, one small act of kindness towards your partner every day. I encourage you to write down what you do each day as a way of sustaining your intention.
If you are alone this Valentine’s Day, then the gift of self-kindness is equally important. It is easy to become prey to your own negative thoughts, particularly on a day where every shop display has cherubs, teddy bears and love hearts plastered everywhere, and media reinforce the message that ‘everyone’ is in love and deliriously happy (that’s a lie by the way). Self-kindness is an absolute necessity for good mental health and promotes a sense of positive wellbeing. Learning the art of self-kindness on a daily basis is a ‘novel’ idea if you are a person who typically invests themselves in always helping others. Self-kindness for you may begin at that place where you practice saying ‘no’ to a request for help and do something that you enjoy instead. Go for a walk, buy yourself a bunch of flowers, read that book that has been waiting beside your bed, have a massage (you get the idea).
If you are in a happy, loving, caring relationship, undoubtedly it is also a ‘kind’ relationship. Anticipating St Valentine’s Day as an opportunity for your lover to make some romantic gesture that communicates their love and devotion may be ‘nice’ but not necessary, because your couple connection is daily defined by simple acts of kindness that nurture the safety and security of a relationship.
Are you single and struggle to be kind to yourself, feeling disappointed and frustrated with yourself? Do you want to change and become stronger, confident and focused towards wellness and personal growth?
Is your couple relationship lacking kindness and care for each other? Do you want a relationship that is safe, secure and marked by kindness?
At Watersedge Counselling, Colleen is available to individuals and couples on 0434 337 245 for a FREE 10 minute consultation to discuss your personal situation and how we can help you. Duncan is available to individuals and can be contacted on 0434 331 243. If you are ready to make an appointment, you can go to out book online now and follow the prompts to make your booking.