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F ebruary 2020
S hifting Y our F ocus Real izing the Signi f icance of Al l Your Relat ionships
around. By reconnecting and strengthening these bonds, you will feel loved, supported, and cherished as you decide what’s next in your life. This leads me to another crucial element of love: It’s not just the relationships with others you should focus on, but your connection with yourself, as well. Showing self-love and building a healthy relationship with yourself is another aspect of Valentine’s Day that is equally, if not more, essential than displaying what we feel toward other people. Use this holiday as a chance to treat yourself with your favorite snack or take yourself out for your favorite dinner. Write yourself a letter that describes everything you love about yourself, or take a few minutes and tell your reflection what you most admire about you. Perhaps not exactly Stuart Smalley-like, but you get the idea. The important thing to work on is taking care of and feeling good about yourself. Another aspect of self-love is to take some time to consider the existing relationships you have in your life. Ensuring you are surrounded by “By reconnecting and strengthening these bonds, you will feel loved, supported, and cherished as you decide what’s next in your life. ”
Valentine’s Day is a holiday that focuses on the romantic relationships in our lives. It can be especially painful for those who are struggling with the end of a romantic relationship. Despite the emotional turmoil that comes with this, it’s a good opportunity to remind ourselves about the other relationships we have in our lives. In the movie “Love Actually,” the British Prime Minister says: “If you look for it, I’ve got a sneaky feeling you’ll find that love actually is all around.” This is so true. The connections we build with our family members and friends are some of the most important bonds we will make in our lives. These are the people who will be there for us through thick and thin and continue to love us unconditionally, no matter what happens. Instead of focusing on the relationships that didn’t work out, let’s turn our attention toward relationships that are nurturing and tangibly present. Perhaps you find yourself in an uncomfortable situation. Some of these relationships may have gone south for quite some time. In some unhealthy instances, one partner will demand the other renounce their family, claiming that being in love means you no longer need your immediate or extended relatives. Once that unhealthy relationship comes to an end, there may be a little distance between you and your family, but it’s important to know they’re still there and want to be in your life. If this situation sounds familiar, find an opportunity to reach out to them. Open the channels of communication with family, and the odds are you’ll find that love is actually all
people who love you and who genuinely care about you is the best form of self-love. Take stock of the relationships you are in right now and ask yourself whether or not they are providing you with positivity. Is your partner worth fighting for? Can you work toward fixing the relationship? If you can’t, you have every right to do what’s necessary to give yourself a happy future. I find this holiday serves a very similar purpose to New Year’s Day. As New Year’s is a good day for us to set resolutions, Valentine’s Day is a good day to face and take stock of our relationships. This February, make sure your life is filled with love, affection, and self-care, leading you to a bright future. Because, doggone it, people like you! –Michael Manely 1
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