Let Politics Help You Enjoy Valentine's Day!

Some people are primed to enjoy February 14th. Many are dreading it!

Yes, you read correctly. Think about your friends, the quality of their relationships and the stories they share with you.

As a political junkie I've spent a lot of time listening to all the presidential candidate's rhetoric. This got me free associating and intermingling politics, Valentine's Day, happiness and what I like to call 'the greater picture.'

I also began to wonder what I might do to be better appreciated, wanted... dare I say it even desired. How might I stack the deck in my favor? What a conundrum. My mind began to grind in overtime.

So if you will indulge me for a few moments I will give you a snapshot of what's been churning through my head recently. It will lead to Valentine's Day in a few hundred words give or take.

These were my associations:

  • If we can ship 11,000,000 immigrants back to their country of origin my life would be substantially improved. There would be less guys in the dating pool.

  • Wall Street bankers. Those guys are really rich. Tax the heck out of them so they'll trade in their BMW's for Yugo's and be far less competitive for dating.
  • Super PACS. I could get one heck of a great life makeover with their money. And I won't be influenced in any way at all. Ok, maybe I'll give them my first born.
  • I can become an Evangelical or some kind of American minority and get lots of attention. Nah, not realistic.
  • I can become a labor union leader so everyone will court me.
  • I can advocate getting rid of the Environmental Protection Agency then lots of true blue AMERICANS would let me play and hunt with them.
  • I can move to a swing state and register as an Independent then everyone will WANT me. But that won't work because desire is fickle as are elections.
  • I think I need to join a revolution. So I may come up with some ideas that won't work right away. That's no problem. Rome wasn't built in a day and if you don't dream big you end up with diminished expectations.
  • Once the word revolution entered my mind, the thoughts kept flowing.

    My gosh, in 1948 Hubert H. Humphrey demanded the Democrat party put a civil rights agenda in their political platform. Talk about being a dreamer and politically incorrect.

    However as one politician keeps saying, you need to think of the long term implications. Perhaps he is correct. But who has a crystal ball?

    Who would have thought that HHH's insistence on civil rights would spawn the creation of the Dixiecrats and that their staunchest supporter and enforcer Strom Thurmond would live to be 100. Hmm, I'm not so sure how that dream turned out for some.

    On the other hand our nation certainly benefitted in many ways from HHH's action. If he hadn't made his politically courageous demands perhaps Martin Luther King Jr. might not have had the support to March on Washington 15 years later. Everything in life is inextricably interrelated.

    And if he hadn't had a dream, protested and reached for the stars who knows what life would be like in America today. What if M.L.K. had said it's not realistic to fight for total equality. Let's only go for something small that won't ruffle too many feathers.

    Further back (because my mind is definitely not linear) what about Abe Lincoln?. His actions abolished slavery. It didn't happen overnight. What if he had decided he couldn't make that work and just negotiated with the South for slaves to be paid ten cents an hour for their work and have 1/2 a day off on Sunday's!

    The spawn of dreamers goes on and on. Gay marriage, legalized marijuana, Roe V. Wade... of course whether all developments are positive depends upon your frame of reference. I would categorize the above list as progressive. This doesn't make it right or wrong.

    In fact I looked up progressive online and came up with a definition as well as antonyms for the word. See what description fits you best. http://www.merriam-webster.com/thesaurus/progressive

    I guess we need dreams and a revolution in all our thinking. Whether politics or our personal lives everything won't happen this year or next. But rest assured transformation will occur. Most of it may benefit our kids, grandkids or their children. Look at Millennials. Despite their many frustrations, they are the most open and tolerant generation I've ever known. Imagine their offspring as adults!

    Well I have certainly digressed. But that's the way it is with free association. Let's slowly segue back to enjoyment and Valentine's day.


    watercolor courtesy of cbkcoaching.com

    Change That Impacts Us Now!

    We can either sit around and wait for change or decide to make it happen. Let's find a way to make the holiday more intrinsically satisfying.

    Do any of the following apply to you?
    • .
    • I'm in a relationship and it's OK.
    • I'm not in a relationship and that's fine.
    • I really want to be in a relationship.
    • I date the wrong people all the time.
    • I can't find anyone "decent" to date.
    • I'm tired of other people's baggage.
    • Guy's are so full of s**t.
    • I'd rather sit at a bar with the guys than continue dating women.
    If you answered yes to any of the above statements then what follows is for you!

    Mind Acrobatics™ Exercise: *"What the Heck Do I Really Want?"
    (Exercise Originally published 8/2014)

    Time needed: 10 or 15 minutes.
    Materials: Paper, pen, great music, favorite beverage and positive outlook.

    Location: Wherever you are most relaxed.

    • Play the music you associate with the happiest period in your life.
    • Take a sip of your drink.
    • Breathe in and out slowly a few times.
    • Keep your eyes open or close them and listen to your music.
    • Imagine the perfect relationship.
    • What are the character traits you most desire in the opposite sex?
    • List the deal breakers you absolutely won't accept.
    • What strengths and great qualities do you bring to the table?
    • What do you enjoy most about dating?
    • What's your biggest turn-on?
    • List an actor or anyone you've encountered that "personifies" your ideal.
    • What is it about them that attracts your interest?
    • Recall the best date you ever had.
    • Write a paragraph about it.
    • Stop when you are finished.
    Now let's bring this back to Valentine's Day. We don't live in a vacuum. Everything we think, feel and do is interrelated.

    The Mind Acrobatics exercise was designed to assist you in becoming more cognizant of what you are looking for in a relationship.

    In order to get the most from any holiday we must live our lives mindfully every day. By doing so we become open to opportunities of which we might never have been aware.

    For relationships to be joyful and flourish we must understand what makes us tick. The more we cherish our daily existence the greater happiness and satisfaction we'll bring to all aspects of our lives.

    Certainly, finding a significant other doesn't happen overnight. And there are elements of luck and timing as well. However, the more self-insight you possess the greater your chances of finding and sustaining a great relationship.

    Just a couple of more thoughts. Valentine's Day is really a day to share with someone or a group that you really care about. It needn't be a romantic partner.

    I'm very fond of the statement, "show me the love." Love comes in all shapes, forms and machinations.

    If you aren't currently involved in a romantic relationship (as so many are not) think about those closest to you and how great the pleasure might be to spend your Valentine's Day with them.

    Look for the humor, pleasure and joy in life. Positive attracts positive.

    I know it's not always easy to feel in a good mood. Especially if one is lonely. But once you've begun the process of becoming more aware of what makes you happy, and then engage in active living positive change will kick in.

    You will enjoy life more and hopefully find not only Valentine's Day happiness but great joy in living the whole year round.

    Why not go out and hug someone today... heck, everyday! Life is short. Savor and enjoy each moment!

    I wish you a great holiday. As always I send out a huge Valentine's Day hug to my 1st Valentine, Mom.

    If you'd like the follow-up Mind Acrobatics exercise to the one above it's included in this link.