Whether you're skipping through the tulips this Valentine's day, are riding solo or somewhere in between... I want you to have an affair.
That's right. This may sound shocking, coming from a wellness expert, but to be truly happy, you should definitely start a torrid love affair. The sooner, the better, in fact.
Regardless of your love/hate relationship status with Cupid, you can start a lifelong love affair today -- right this second, in fact -- with the only person who has never left you and will always be there for you, until the end.
This person is the One, your true soul mate, the perfect date, from this day forward. That person... is you. One of the Laws of Love states that you can only give or receive love to the extent that you can give and receive it to and from yourself.
Say you just met a great new guy or girl who showers you with love and attention. If you don't think you're enough, then the following things are likely to happen. See if any of them sound familiar:
1. They love you, yet you feel insecure, because ultimately you don't believe in yourself, so you don't believe them.
2. Instead of generating more love for yourself, you start demanding that they do it -- on your timeline and in the exact ways you need.
3. When they don't/can't, you get upset, reactive and other not very attractive behaviors that keep this love-suffocating vicious cycle going.
When we suffer from a lack of self-loving, we load responsibility onto others to be the perfect lover that they can never be. Everyone outside of you is, at best, a deeply-committed gift, not a lifeline.
So start an affair-with-self and stop abandoning yourself, the true cause of so much of our so-called relationship anxiety.
10 Steps to Start Your Best Affair Ever
I offer these together with Feng Shui Master and cool guy Ariel Towne:
1. Be a solid one before you try to be a two: Don't be a leaky boat --someone who needs saving. Be your own knight in shining armor and then you can come to the relationship as the best guy or gal the world has to offer.
2. Go within: Use your journal. Observe things, places and relationships that inspire you. Fire up the Pinterest account and create a vision board. When you know what you like, you will be able to communicate that to others one day.
3. Do a cleanse: Get rid of things that don't serve the purpose of the bedroom. Lighten or remove technology altogether and go on a tech vacation. A bedroom should avoid reminders of how many emails you need to send or how much you "should" be doing. Get rid of gym equipment, a library of books or those tubs of extra clothes that make your bedroom feel like a walk-in closet.
4. Make your bedroom into a sanctuary: The bedroom should feel different than other parts of your life. On the bed, put extra-snuggly bedding or a body pillow. It's the room in which you want to relax, rejuvenate and re-connect to your source. Place everything in your bedroom on purpose and with purpose.
5. Spice things up: Make sure your bedroom is a juicy, yummy stimulant of all five senses. Make it look and feel like someplace you want to curl your toes. Create a space that you want to take off your clothes in: feel-good material for your skin, smells that turn you on, images that stir your passions and sounds of soothing, relaxation or tunes that move your soul.
6. Take Responsibility: It's up to each person to look after their own happiness. Think about how you feel when a partner isn't taking care of themselves but demanding that you do it. It doesn't feel good, and more than that, it doesn't work. It's fine to require that your partners treat you well. It's quite another to ask them to do it when you won't.
7. Date Yourself: I just returned from a great yoga class, then dinner at a neighborhood bistro while I brainstormed for this article. Make plans with yourself, at least once a week, and if it's a dinner date-with-self, make sure to get a great table -- and bring your journal. It's amazing what you'll discover when you pay attention to you.
8. Do It Daily: What you put in your body, whether material or energetic, is a direct statement of self-value. If you're eating like crap or obsessing about things you can't control, you get toxic. The rule is: If you wouldn't do it to someone you love, don't do it to yourself.
9. Get Another Job: Remember that other people's business is not your business. Your job is maintaining the space for your own self-empowerment. It's a full-time job being you, so it's high time to get back to the biz of being the best you you can be.
Lighten Up: Your affair should be fun. Do things with you that you like. The key to having a proper affair is to make sure that you love being with yourself as much or more than anyone else. Then you're free to give and love in return, knowing that, in the end, you lack nothing at all.
For more on mindfulness, click here.
For more by Sadie Nardini, click here.