Feeling the love this month? I’m not talking about the much-hyped 14th in particular, because we don’t all want that. But what we do all want and need is a little love (or even a lot). Here are some ways to show love which don’t include spending ridiculous amounts.
Love your environment
The idea of picking up three pieces of rubbish when you next visit a beach is a good one. If, like me, you live a long way from a beach, however, you could take the idea somewhere closer, next time you’re out and about.
Or maybe you’d prefer to start with your home environment? Ask yourself…
- Where are the untidy corners, drawers, cupboards or shelves that could do with some tlc?
- Does your winter wardrobe need a de-clutter?
- Are you giving houseroom to paperwork older than a teenager?
- What does your workspace look like? Is that an environment that encourages clear thinking with few distractions?
The long-term gain from loving your environment is often a wonderful feeling of freedom, like a weight has been lifted. Getting rid of “stuff” can be very liberating. If throwing things away troubles your conscience, do look at donating to charities. Many will come and collect larger items. Animal charities are always grateful for old towels and other bedding, as are shelters for the homeless. A little research will make your environmental clear-up of great advantage to others too. You know how much we like a win-win on this website!
Give yourself some time out. I make no apologies for mentioning this again. It’s important. You’re important. You respect others, so respect yourself too. And be aware of kidding yourself, as in “I’m doing this piece of work [insert other not-very-kind task] at silly o’clock for me…” Self compassion takes time, honesty and courage and only you can make it happen.
Loving yourself means different things to different people…
- eating well
- having an early night
- a day, or even a few hours away from social media
- asking for help
- time out in silence, away from demands
- saying “no” or maybe “yes”
- if nothing else, shut yourself in the bathroom and take 5 good, long, deep breaths
Pass on the love
We all love a random act of kindness, don’t we? What could you do, to make someone’s day?
- pay for a stranger’s coffee
- open the door and smile at the person behind you
- donate to a charity; it doesn’t have to be money either: see my ideas at the top of this blog
- send a card to a friend for no reason, other than you love them
- let someone into the queue of traffic
- visit someone who needs company
- volunteer to help at an event, or regularly if you can
There are so many of these, and I’d also love you to share your favourites. What will you do to spread the love this February?