By Sunny Simon

Okay. I admit it. I’m hooked on Valentine’s Day – always have been. Shower me with heart shaped boxes holding dark chocolate treats, cheesy Hallmark cards, cuddy stuffed bears with bright pink bows and those little candies that say “kiss me” and “luv u.” That little cupid guy is a ten in my book. I decorate my home for this holiday and find joy in creating a Pinterest board with all things that portray the “L” word. Heck, even my dog was born on Valentine’s Day.

For me it’s not about the bright shiny things, candlelight dinners or even fine champagne, although I never turn down a glass of the bubbly. It’s about setting aside a day to celebrate love. No need to worry about being politically correct on this day. There is no bah humbugging the 14th of February because love is the universal language. It’s not a day devoted to couples only. You don’t have to be in a relationship to celebrate love. Treat a good friend to a Valentine’s Day lunch, pamper yourself with something special or lavish your dog with a new chewy toy. Just get out there and spread the love. Once a year on a day dedicated to love let the spirit move you and have fun.

Need inspiration? Get creative like an entrepreneur named Ron in South Port, North Carolina. This owner of a McDonald’s franchise is spreading love at the Golden Arches. From 6:00 to 8:00 pm his patrons will be greeted at the door, and escorted to a table lit by candlelight. Wait staff will take the order and deliver it with a smile. No pressure on the pocket book. I’m lovin’ it!
The act of love is all about giving. Consider performing a random act of kindness. Nothing tugs on the heartstrings more than unexpected joy delivered by a perfect stranger. Spend a couple of hours in a retirement home passing out Valentines or home baked cookies to elderly residents. Dispense hugs and smiles. Equip yourself with funny jokes or bring along your guitar and put on a show.

Lastly, have you been withholding love based on a nasty spat? Are you carrying the burden of ill will around like a coveted prize? Time to release and forgive. If there is someone in your life that needs to hear your expression of love, do it now. You won’t regret it.
Sunny Simon is the owner of Raise the Bar High Life and Career Coaching. More about Sunny at