Valentine’s Day — a holiday filled with romance, roses and overused pink and red decorations. Though some look forward to the mush surrounding Valentine’s Day, for others, a month of red wines and overrated teddy bears leaves a lot to be desired. Regardless of which camp you’re in, after the fateful day of Feb. 14, singles and couples alike need to recover from all the hype surrounding the celebration of romantic love. Bank accounts need to be refilled, stresses need to be assuaged and the singles hiding out on Netflix can finally emerge into the outside world without fearing an assault of overly-gushy couples. But how does one begin the long recovery from too many sweets and too much… sweets?
Step 1: Invest in some savory (or even healthy) food
Odds are, even if “The One” wasn’t in the picture this year, there is an abundance of chocolate and other candies floating around the apartment or dorm room. While it is nice to fuel up on sugar-filled comfort food to help with all the boring class assignments and essays, it can be easy to make yourself sick from eating too much candied goodness. Having a tall glass of water and some veggies nearby can help with the stomach aches and headaches from excessive sugar consumption.
Step 2: Finally create that budget
Valentine's Day is expensive with a capital “E,” especially if your lover has high expectations for gift-giving. Between all the chocolate, roses, dates, lingerie, teddy bears, heart candies and cards, it’s a wonder there’s anything left in the bank account, let alone enough for the weekend Ubers and grocery shopping. Create a budget. Budgets are good to have anyway, and now is the perfect time to begin one. A budget — even a temporary one — is a fantastic way to get some cash money back in your account and recover from all the recent expenses.
Step 3: Get rid of those unrealistic expectations
Give your significant other a break. Valentine’s Day creates a lot of unrealistic and unhealthy requirements for what dating should be. It’s okay if your person doesn't get you the biggest stuffed animal or most expensive bouquet of roses in the store. Who needs that stuff anyway? Celebrating V-Day is a great way to let someone know you care about them, but make sure you don’t get caught up in the expectation of monetary gifts — they don’t mean as much as society would have you believe. Spending a night in can be just as lovely as going out to a fancy dinner, so try not to hold it against them if your significant other neglects to supply the correct amount of bejeweled bracelets or processed sugar.
Step 4: Chat with some singles
The single life is rough during February. There are rom-coms on 24/7 and even the most mundane of TV shows seem to dredge up some romance for the occasion. It is hard to look around without red and pink lace jumping out from shadows and storefront windows. All in all, Valentine’s Day can make for a frustrating time for singles. So, if you are a person who is looking for a new romance, or a couple happily in a relationship, make sure to chat it up with some local singles. Those that are taken will feel better about themselves by spreading the love around with some single friends, and those that aren’t will feel better by chatting with a friend or flirting it up. It is easy to isolate yourself during the holiday. Couples tend to hole up together while singles tend to take a more solitary approach, but recovering from all the confetti and flowers is best done with others.
Step 5: Give it a rest
Now that V-Day has passed, there is no need for overly dramatic public displays of affection. No more kissing on the Rotunda steps or Instagram photos with sultry glances at someone half out of the frame. Try not to anxiously await that incoming Snapchat from your boo, and — out of consideration for all the singles out there — try to keep your leftover angst to yourself.
Celebrating Valentine’s Day is a great way to let your loved ones know they are cared for, but the holiday can be a bit much sometimes and — no matter who you are — some recovery time is usually needed. So go gorge yourself on sugary sweetness and continue watching Netflix, but do it with some self-care and these helpful guidelines.