Do These Five Things for Valentine's

5. Three-Word Throw Down

This may be the hardest part of Valentine’s Day. At least, it is the most important part — the whole point, really. But when the spotlight is on us to profess our love, a case of stage fright may follow. Or, professing one’s love on Valentine’s Day might seem affected or forced, and the stubborn among us will resist.

You do so at your peril.

Whatever your inclination, omitting ”I love you” from your Valentine’s Day repertoire is akin to a steaming pile of ”I think you’re okay.” That absent phrase will be the elephant in the room. Say it firmly, with conviction.

Then again, maybe you’re not at that stage. Maybe this bridge has not yet been crossed. Well, there’s no better time to discuss it.

With the St. Valentine’s steamroller running you over, mercilessly, this is an opportunity to discuss your budding relationship without subterfuge. The world is begging you to talk about love, so go ahead and do it. Communication is crucial in any good relationship, so dive in and talk about the subject at hand: love. An honest dialogue about where the two of you (or three, but who’s counting?) are in terms of your relationship is healthy. If you’re not in love, that’s not necessarily a problem. Nor is it if one of you is and the other isn’t. They’re your feelings and you’re entitled to them. Same goes for your date. Whatever you’re feeling, let it out. Own your feelings, whatever they may be, and be respectful of others’ feelings. If you love him and he’s not certain he feels similarly, so be it. Whether or not you love someone need not be contingent upon her disposition. Be embarrassed if you’re too frightened to be forthright about what you’re feeling, but not for the feelings themselves.

On Valentine’s Day, singles can be reminded of heartbreaks and take comfort in knowing that being single is better then being in a bad relationship. But, like those couples, it’s your day, too, to say, ”I love you.” All you need is a mirror. If, however, you’re just not feeling it, you’ve got some work to do. Through death, disinterest or worse, all relationships end. All, that is, but the relationship you have with yourself. So if you don’t love yourself, you’d best figure out what it will take to get there. Otherwise, you’re in for a lifetime of depressing Valentine’s Days

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Follow Will O'Bryan on Twitter @wobryan.

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