It's tough being a guy on Valentine's Day. Over half of women say they would end their relationship if their partner didn't give them anything on this annual ritual for lovers. Talk about performance anxiety!
While there isn't data on whether women are just making idle threats (not that you want to put that to the test!), the fact remains that your partner will expect some token of love. And there are so many easy options for you--from heart-shaped boxes of chocolate to fragrant bouquets of roses. Not to mention aisles and aisles of pre-written cards just waiting for your signature!
Valentine's Day didn't start out as big business. It began as a non-commercial celebration of romantic love in 18th-century England. But by 1797, The Young Man's Valentine Writer was published with sentimental verses to help tongue-tied lovers compose Valentines. It's been downhill every since. Now, Valentine's Day cards are mass-produced, and the only effort required is selecting one from the many racks at the stationery store.
It is this mass production of love that I struggle with. What would your partner prefer--a card that has been ghost-written by a stranger (with a generic message that will be read by thousands of other strangers) or one that has been thoughtfully composed by you? I think we both know the answer!
You may argue that you are not good with words, witty or creative. None of that matters. The only thing that matters is that your message come straight from your heart. And that is guaranteed to melt her heart.
This Valentine's Day, why not leave the pre-fab cards on the rack and buy a blank one instead? You can customize your own declaration of love on an open canvas. The possibilities are endless, and it will take only marginally more effort to compose your own Valentine than to buy one ready-made.
Here are some tips for your do-it-yourself Valentine.
Be specific. Every woman wants to hear why they are special. Generic expressions such as "I love you" or "Happy Valentine's Day" are great starts, but will pack more punch if you can back it up with "why". For example, "I love you because ...you make me laugh harder than anyone else in the world" resonates with more authenticity.
Be nostalgic. Valentine's Day is for celebrating your love. What experience did you share in the past twelve months that brought you closer? For example, "The past year was extra special because...despite our camping trip being interrupted by a hurricane, we proved we love each other come rain or shine."
Be aspirational. Keeping love alive means keeping it fresh, and creating new memories together. For example, "Being with you is the best thing in the world because... no matter where we are you always find the hidden gems. Here's to even more discoveries." Celebrating the past is important, but so is looking forward with anticipation.
Shouldn't Valentine's Day be the day you put pen to paper and craft a personal expression of love that will last long after the last truffle has been eaten, and the flowers long relegated to the green bin? That's what Valentine's Day is really all about!