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Being Single on Valentine's Day

Ten Tips to Manage the Day (Hint: There's more to love than romantic love. You can choose to be loving and spread joy)

 

Singles outnumber married people today, making up 50.2 percent of Americans over age 16, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. That’s the highest it has ever been.

Still, many singles dread the onslaught of Cupids and red hearts which appear every time they walk into a store during February.

National Louis University’s Claudia Pitts, Ph.D., associate professor of psychology, says singles don’t have to feel down about Valentine’s Day, or hold the misconception that “everyone else” enjoys adoring, problem-free relationships.

“A lot of adults’ feelings about Valentine’s Day trace back to when they were in elementary school and they didn’t receive a valentine,” Pitts said. “Know that it’s your expectations about Valentine’s Day that get you, and you can change your expectations.”

She offered the following tips singles can use for changing their expectations about the day.

  1. Singles can celebrate Singles Awareness Day, which some observe on Feb. 14, but others observe on Feb. 15 in order to differentiate it, and also take advantage of 50 percent discounts on Valentine’s candy. It’s meant to be a humorous, light-hearted holiday in which singles brush off pressure to get married. Many attend singles’ events in order to affirm their singleness, and/or meet other singles. Type "singles" into Meetup.com to find local events.
  2. Cultivate an attitude of gratitude. Focus on all the good things you do have in your life, such as good friends, family members, the pursuit of interests you enjoy, pets, your home, travel, etc. Gratitude relieves depression, Pitts says.
  3. Love doesn’t have to be limited to romantic love. Singles can focus instead on reaching out in a loving fashion to volunteer, donate or help the less fortunate. Volunteering to walk dogs at a rescue shelter, staffing a hotline or donating to a cause you believe in can be ways of spreading love on Feb. 14 or any day.
  4. People who anticipate Feb. 14 might be a tough day can gather a group of single friends for an anti-Valentine’s Day party. Participants can orchestrate a gift swap, similar to a Secret Santa, in which everyone draws names and gets their recipient some chocolates, flowers or wine.
  5. Feeling a little mischievous? Send yourself flowers at work, with a blank card, leaving everyone to speculate about who sent them. Or, send anonymous flowers to a single friend.
  6. Those who have recently been through a breakup, or are constantly fielding questions as to why they are not married, will need to do some solid planning to make it through to Feb. 15. They can gather supportive people and do something completely un-romantic, like go to a comedy or horror film, help at a homeless shelter or work out at a health club. Typing “anti-Valentine’s” into Pinterest will also provide ideas.
  7. It’s important for singles to practice self-care, Pitts says. It could come in the form of going to a spa, splurging on a nice meal or box of chocolates or going to a show. Remember that many people in relationships do not get these little niceties from their partners, but singles can provide them for themselves or their friends.
  8. Volunteer to babysit your little cousins or friends' kids. You can even get out the construction paper and doilies and do valentine crafts, followed by cupcakes. Not only will your friends or family appreciate it, time with kids is great. They might even give you a valentine card or some candy hearts.
  9. Many people get a little bit lonely on Valentine’s Day. However, it’s never a good idea to “drunk-dial” exes. If you feel the urge to call, email, instant message, or text on Valentine’s, maybe it’s best to focus it on your mom or grandmother or someone else who might be feeling isolated.
  10. Remember that Feb. 14 is just one random day out of many. It’s just another day on the calendar, like tomorrow and yesterday, and will soon be gone for another year.


 

 

 

Locations
  • CHICAGO DOWNTOWN CAMPUS

    NLU’s Chicago campus on South Michigan Avenue occupies five floors of the historic Peoples Gas Building. This landmark building, across the street from the Art Institute of Chicago and Grant Park, is easily accessible by train, bus and car and is surrounded by restaurants, parking lots/garages and shops.

    122 S. Michigan Avenue
    Chicago, IL 60603
    (888) 658.8632
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  • ELGIN

    Conveniently located in a fast-growing business district off I-90 and Route 31, NLU Elgin features 10 classrooms with high-tech media equipment; a computer lab with high-speed Internet access; two conference rooms; and comfortable student lounges. Parking is free at this recently remodeled and upgraded teaching site, which now includes wireless Internet access.

    620 Tollgate Road
    Elgin, IL 60123
    (888) 658.8632
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  • NORTH SHORE

    Opened in the summer of 2006, NLU North Shore at Skokie is a state-of-the-art modern campus located just off the Edens Expressway near the Old Orchard Shopping Center. The campus includes 44 wireless classrooms equipped with high-tech media equipment; four computer labs with high-speed Internet access, including a walk-in lab in the library; six conference rooms; a public café for beverages and snacks; a student welcome center; a library for research and study; and multiple, comfortable student lounge areas.

    5202 Old Orchard Road
    Skokie, IL 60077
    (888) 658.8632
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  • LISLE

    Located just minutes from the East-West Tollway (I-88), NLU Lisle features 42 wireless classrooms equipped with high-tech media equipment; four computer labs with high-speed Internet access, including a separate walk-in lab in the library; a café for beverages and snacks; a student welcome center; a library for research and study; conference rooms; and six comfortable student lounge areas with wireless access.

    850 Warrenville Road
    Lisle, IL 60532
    (888) 658.8632
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  • WHEELING

    Located in one of Chicago's major northwest suburbs, the newly renovated NLU Wheeling includes 20 classrooms with high-tech media equipment, four conference rooms, four computer labs with high-speed Internet access, large student lounge areas with wireless capabilities and interactive video capabilities, and an extensive research library. The site also houses the university library research collection.

    1000 Capitol Drive
    Wheeling, IL 60090
    (888) 658.8632
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  • FLORIDA (TAMPA)

    Established in 1988 and located in one of Tampa's major business districts, NLU's Florida Regional Center serves students in 13 counties in central Florida. In addition to its classrooms, the National Louis University Tampa Regional Center features a computer lab, student lounges, and conference room.

    5110 Sunforest Drive, Suite 102
    Tampa, FL 33634
    (800) 366.6581
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