a recipe for self-love [lifestyle]

In early February, America’s lonely singles give up what they’re doing for a week and join a massive support group to brave the collective trauma of Valentine’s Day. Dating apps are seeing spikes in activity as desperate singles try to hook up before the big day. Others celebrate their “galentines” or “palentines,” because God forbid we don’t get into the sweetest, reddest and rosiest corporate program of the year. But even though people pull together to survive Valentine’s Day, it seems like all mutual support ends as soon as the calendar hits February 15. As soon as CVS plastic roses hit their 50% off, singles are taking a cue from going back to the beggar-thy-neighbour strategy.

Sometimes it takes a bit of a pick-me-up to get through the rest of February. For those who need a little self-care to survive the worst month of the year, I recommend following this tried-and-tested recipe for a self-care day.


A box of leftover V-Day chocolates (only the dark chocolate ones, because you’ve already eaten all the milk chocolate)

A username and password from your ex’s HBO account

A face mask you received from a distant acquaintance during Secret Santa in December (and maybe those fuzzy socks too)

Two pairs of pajamas (one for waking up to and one for changing into when you eat spaghetti too enthusiastically and spray tomato sauce on your first pair)

An impulse purchase of your choice (I recommend a neck massager)

A box of Special K (for decoration)


  1. Start your day with meditation. Your mom (and your roommate’s mom, your aunt, and your high school counselor) probably told you to start meditating, so why not start today? Search YouTube for “five minutes of mindfulness meditation” and let a man with an incredibly soothing voice tell you how to breathe.

  2. Once you have meditated, move your body in a way that feels good to you. If that doesn’t bring back the traumatic memories, do one of the 5-minute ab videos you used to do during the spring 2020 quarantine. Or, if you’re going to the Nelson Fitness Center anytime after 4 p.m., the hot and humid climate might even convince you that you are in for a luxurious tropical vacation.

  3. Then, go for a long meditative walk. See if you can find a young couple with a golden retriever you can pet! Then try not to think about how lonely you are.

  4. After your walk, take a bubble bath. If your residence doesn’t have one, don’t worry, just find the shower with the most hair clogged drain and let the water run. It will become a bath after a few minutes. (Pro tip for first-years: MoChamp and EmWool both have “bathrooms” on each floor. If you feel so inclined, lounge in one of those fluorescent-lit closets until what your fingers carve!)

  5. While waiting for the water to warm up, organize your space. It’s time to finally suck up the Special K smashed on the floor. Also, you should wash your sheets. They’re starting to get a little ~funky~.

  6. Finally, as soon as you have completed all the episodes of Succession, white lotusand Euphoria you need to catch up, close your laptop and put it away. Then, take out your phone and scroll through Instagram. Then reply to all your Snapchats even if you know you’re too old to keep streaks. Alright, maybe watch TikToks for a while. Maybe accidentally send one to your ex instead of your best friend. Ok ok, that’s really enough. It’s time for a social media detox – wait, how is it 1:30 in the morning already? Guess it’s time to make a bowl of Special K.

Congratulations, you have now completed a full day of self-love and appreciation! Repeat these steps as many times as necessary until you really feel at peace with yourself. I hope you feel rejuvenated, reset, and ready to face the month of March, where the same loneliness might linger, but without the stark reminder of a commonly celebrated day!

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