When most people hear the words ‘Valentine’s Day’ they think of cupid, bears holding hearts, dates, candies and more fluffy store bought items.
When we think of Valentine’s Day, we like to think about LOVE.
Love is a wide emotion, it can represent how one partner supports another partner, it can be how friends feel about each other, or how you show gratitude about that amazing dinner you just made.
When it comes to other people, objects or experiences we are quick to express our Love for it, however sometimes when we look within we have a harder time saying the word love. I love myself, is not a statement we hear often enough.
Growing up it seemed to be a bad thing to love yourself, someone that expressed that they were amazing were called conceited or self-centred. Living with that, in a time of growth + development changes the way you love yourself.
At Mindful Little Things we aim to change that as much as possible. Children should learn to love themselves, and know that they are an extraordinary person! That they are unique and special and that they should love themselves for a million reasons and that it’s ok, that it is more than ok, it's actually encouraged to feel that way.
Children look to the adults in their lives for examples of what they are ‘supposed’ to be like when they grow up, it is our job to show them that loving yourself is just as important as loving anyone else in their lives.
Empowerment teaches loving kindness, it supports the understanding of your own weaknesses and strengths, it helps us make decisions and reminds us of the many ways that we are amazing.
This Valentine’s Day we encourage parents, partners, families and everyone to remember Love. Not the gift giving kind, but the empowerment kind. Showing up for that special someone, being present in the moment with them (phones away please), creating a stronger bond, experiencing together and creating new traditions.
Whether or not you are in a relationship with someone, or you are a single parent, Valentine’s Day can be a time of love and joy for everyone. It is all on the perspective you choose to take. For children any holiday is a time to celebrate, themed events are a joyous occasion and they will teach you what it means to live in the present, with unadulterated joy.
If you are a parent create some healthy Valentine’s Day expectations and traditions for your child by creating a special day for them focused on self-love, empowerment, and family. Using some mindfulness based practices you can support living in the moment, allowing everyone to experience this Love Day in a positive and uplifting way.
You can still lay out all that yummy Valentine’s chocolate, and make heart shaped pancakes for breakfast, because as we said before children LOVE themed experiences! During your slow mindful breakfast, we suggest using conversation starters to connect with your family. What makes them feel special? What makes their family unique? What do they love about themselves? What does love look like?
We once asked a group of children “What does love look like” and their responses were so innocent and pure it could melt your heart.
Love looks like...
“My mom when she helps me with my socks” -Age 4
“My brother, he is adorable and really funny” -Age 7
“Helping your friend with a problem” -Age 6
What does love look like to you?
Ps. If you are looking for some fun ways to spend Valentine’s Day and create some new traditions with your family, partner or some good friends check out our parent resource page for our “5 Ways to share Love”
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