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Home alone

The mere mention of February 14 is enough to strike terror into the hearts of singletons everywhere. But fear not! This year, Jo Caruana has a plan for happiness, whatever your status.

We know the drill: come the end of January, when the pleasing twinkle of fairy lights is already long gone, out come the red-tinged decorations and, to quote Wet Wet Wet: “love is all around us.”

This time, you are your own special someone – so go on and show it

Yes, before we know it, the red-letter day becomes the focus of all kinds of things – restaurant menus, shop windows and themed festivals – and we’re all forced to focus on the status of our love lives.

Now, this is all well and good for the loved-up among us, but it can prove a little trying for anyone still on the search for Mr/Mrs Right.

But there’s really no need to grab that multi-pack of tissues and hide under your duvet just yet. Instead, consult our guide to how to have your best Valentine’s Day yet – single!

Make peace with it. Before you can do anything fun on February 14, you’re going to need to be okay with the fact you’re currently single – otherwise you stand to be that grizzly person in the corner, growling at happy-looking passers-by, or bursting into tears every time a ballad comes on the MP3 player.

So why not start by appreciating the many reasons why it’s great to be flying solo? For starters, you don’t have to buy into the red roses and expensive cards malarkey, plus you’re free to do whatever you want: be tidy, or messy, make your own rules about what to watch on television and avoid those obligatory in-law events.

So, use this as inspiration and think back to the many times when you’d wished you didn’t have to please others, and embrace the valuable ‘you time’.

It’s all about you. And that means that you can do whatever you want. How great is that? You can start by treating yourself. Without someone else to pamper on the big day, you can invest in a little present for yourself. It could be a massage at that really luxurious spa, a designer item you’ve had your eye on, or even a flight to visit friends overseas. Whatever it is, make it special and go all starry-eyed for yourself. This Valentine’s, you are your own special someone – so go on and show it.

Make a night of it. We know it may feel like it sometimes, but you aren’t the only single person left in the world. In fact, you’re unlikely to be the only single person in your extended circle either. So celebrate that! Use Valentine’s as an opportunity to spend some time with people you might not, usually. Send an e-mail to anyone you know isn’t part of a couple and organise a get-together for the lot of you. You could theme it ‘anti-Valentine’s’, or if you’re not feeling quite so harsh, simply a girls’ or boys’ night of mayhem. Then plan something brilliant for you all to enjoy together – whether that’s a night of clubbing, or a quiet night on the sofa watching funny movies. Either way, it’s totally your call.

Have a Secret Santa. OK, it’s not quite a Secret ‘Santa’ – but it’s close. Sticking with the theme of celebrating your fellow singleton friends this year, why not organise little presents for each other? Just as you would with friends at Christmas, set yourselves a budget and pick one name out of a hat. Then, set out to buy them something you know will make them feel special and exchange them at your singleton night of fun. It’s a way of ensuring you do have a little gift to look forward to on Valentine’s Day, while making someone else smile too.

Cancel commercialisation! Do some­­thing that gives back to the community. Take the opportunity to start a relationship with a cause close to your heart. Spend time with the elderly in a home, or children in an orphanage, or take a sanctuary dog for a walk. It will leave you feeling great, while also putting a smile on someone else’s face. And you never know where it could lead…

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