Valentine’s Day Can Be Great Fun for Singles, Too!

In 1998, I was single and living in a small town in Upstate New York, where I worked at the college that was pretty much the epicenter of the community. The ice arena I managed was even more of the center of activity, especially in the winter months, and many of the students on campus were like me: alone with few to no compatible prospects for a Valentine’s Day date. I refused to let any of us suffer unnecessarily, and I created a “No Date Skate” with special pricing for those purchasing single tickets. Participants were encouraged to celebrate their status and have fun. It was a solid success for everyone involved. The students had fun. I was busy working the event and having my own version of fun. By the time we resurfaced the ice and closed the arena, I was exhausted and forgot that I didn’t have a date on a night that would actually just be February 14th if not for the marketers. I got up the next morning, excited to return to the rink, where I did some great work organizing, managing and cleaning up the messes left by the prior manager.

Likewise, in 2003 (and a lot of years in between), I was dateless. My roommate was, too, so we went to a movie together. We saw Charlize Theron in Monster, which was a perfect feel good movie for this special day. Okay. Maybe a crime drama based on the true story of a female serial killer wasn’t the most romantic movie we could have seen, but that was the point, and it was actually an extraordinary film that kept us up talking for hours. It was one of the best nights I had with that roommate, who I later learned didn’t think we had much in common.

This year, I will be spending my third Valentine’s Day with Peter. It’s always one of those awkward events because I love him and want to celebrate our partnership, but it seems weird and inauthentic to buy into the commercialization of one day. Before we met and for much of my dating life, I typically said that I would prefer a man to treat me well everyday than to woo me once or twice per year, based on someone else’s directions. I do get that everyday. So, here I am, still confused and uncertain on Valentine’s Day. I guess that never really goes away. Hopefully, that will bring you some solace.

No matter what your plans are today, remember that your first love is you. Think back to those days when your fingers, toes and belly button fascinated you. Look in the mirror and find at least 10 things you love about yourself. Know that you are truly a unique gift. There has never been, is not right now and will never be another you. Some will come close, but they won’t have the same complex mix of your DNA, experiences, beliefs, smile, laughter, knowledge, talent, etc. We need you to shine your light. No one else can. I’ll be looking for it. xoxoxoxo

Nance L. Schick, Esq. is an attorney, mediator, and conflict resolution coach based in New York City. She is the founder of The Law Studio of Nance L. Schick, where she and her team of employees, vendors, and strategic partners deconstruct conflict and re-create it as opportunity, using a holistic, integrative approach. Nance resolves conflict and cultivates leaders, using her EEOC training, as well as her proprietary Third Ear Conflict Resolution process, which is described in more detail in her first book, DIY Conflict Resolution: Seven Choices and Five Actions of a Master. She is also an award-winning entrepreneur, who has been acknowledged by Enterprising Women Magazine (Honorable Mention, 2014 Woman of the Year awards), and Urban Rebound NY/Count Me In (2013 Pitch Competition finalist).