Surviving this Valentine’s Day

February is heart month and that time of the year when people celebrate another holiday full of mass-produced holiday cards; Valentine’s Day. While this tends to be a time of joy for lovers and partners, others can find this time of year a little tough. Reminders of past loved ones or feelings of loneliness can arise when we are constantly reminded of what other’s (seem to) have. But fear not, as someone who never really took this love holiday seriously, I have a few tips to get you through.

Herbs

  •  Lemon Balm is a fairly gentle herb not only known to calm our nervous system, but it is also a carminative, meaning it helps digestion and reduces bloating by cutting down the production of gas. Added bonus: lemon balm has anti-viral properties to help you fight off potential colds during these times of stress when you are more vulnerable to getting sick. Lemon balm makes a delicious tea and is popular in stress, anxiety, and sleepy-time blends. 
  • Some of my other favourites include St. John’s Wort (be careful with herb-drug interactions!), skullcap, and passionflower. Click here http://mountainroseblog.com/herbs-heartbreak/ for a great article by the Mountain Rose blog called Herbs for Heartbreak.

Energetics

  • There are so many wonderful homeopathic remedies to get us through trying times, consult with a Homeopathic Doctor or Naturopathic Doctor well versed in homeopathy to find the remedy specific to your current state. A popular grief remedy is ignatia (often called iamara), but it doesn’t fit everyone’s symptom picture. 
  • I often use Rescue Remedy (a Bach Flower Essence) for times when I feel in shock, overwhelmed, or during times of grief. The remedy is a mixture of several different Bach Flower Essences and contains Star of Bethlehem, the flower essence known to help with grief.

Acupuncture

  • It’s not surprising (for me at least) that acupuncture can do wonders for an aching heart. Not only does it activate your parasympathetic nervous system (i.e. the part of your nervous system that takes over when you’re calm and need to “rest and digest) but it also helps balance out and release uncomfortable emotions.
  • By no means does it cure heartbreak, but it can provide some relief, give some people clarity, and help with various symptoms that can come along with a broken heart such as: insomnia, concentration, fatigue, restlessness, low immunity, appetite, and chest pain, just to name a few.
  • Click here for the recent article called “Acupuncture for Heartbreak” that I wrote with Lisa Baird.
Broken Heart

Be Kind to Yourself

  • Take it easy on the 14th. Read a book while having a nice hot bath. Engage in your favorite hobby (knitting perhaps?). Cook your favorite meal.  
  • Make an effort to connect to friends, especially other single friends. Go out to dinner together, go to the theater, or have a night in with loved ones. 
  • Stay away from facebook. It has this scary way of making us all feel like everyone else is happy and doing well during the times we feel alone. It will probably make you feel worse if you’re already down.

Remember this is just one day, and although so many people seem incredibly happy and in love on Valentine’s Day, relationships often seem more functional as an outsider. We don’t need a partner to feel loved and appreciated. We have ourselves, and our friends and families. Love can come and go, but our family and close friends are often for life. Take the day to acknowledge those special individuals in your life and make an effort to prioritize yourself this February.