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I'm not. . . but I'm trying! So let me share with you what I've learned about love over the years. 

I want to cover a few different ideas which may not tie together very neatly, but that is the beauty of love. . . it is all emcompassing!

i want to cover the following:

1) How to love yourself more

2) How to love others better

3) How to shift Valentine's day from being a commercially crappy holiday (that also destroys our waistlines and brings annoyance to any single woman, because well it's stupid) to a day where

WE CAN LOVE BIGGER 

(i.e. make it about global love and not about romantic love)

Let's get started!

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1) How to love yourself more. 

"You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection".

This was a misquoted Buddha quote so I can't attribute it, but the interpretation is still a powerful statement. 

I hated the term "self-love" until I understood what it meant. So feel free to ditch the words and focus on the actions. 

Self love is looking in the mirror and thanking your eyes for being able to see your reflection, thanking your legs for carrying through this world, thanking your arms for allowing you to embrace those you love. 

It is speaking clearly about your needs and surrounding yourself with those who meet them.

It is taking care of your body, soul, heart and mind through thoughts & actions that are supportive and not destructive. 

When we take care of all aspects of our life we start to crowd out the voice that says we don't deserve things or that we are unloveable, because we are showing up for ourselves every single day. 

That negative voice in our heads can still exist, but by practicing the above it can become smaller and less powerful allowing ourselves to love ourselves MORE!

 Me in New York the Day before I moved to Barcelona. literally surrounded by love!

Me in New York the Day before I moved to Barcelona. literally surrounded by love!

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2) How to love others better.

"If you love a flower, don't pick it up. Because if you pick it up, it ceases to be what you love. So if you love a flower, let it be. Love is not about Possession. Love is about appreciation." - Osho

Conventional love can breed jealously, insecurity, anger, and fear. But that is because we are coming from a place where we want to capture love. It feels so fragile and fleeting that we are afraid if we don't hold on tight enough it will disappear forever and we will be left alone. 

It is a great practice to Love fearlessly & without attachment. Give love to all. Everyone at work, every stranger on the street, to your family and partners. When I say to "give love" I am talking about opening your heart to all. It can be through a smile, through listening, through really looking into someone's eyes deeply and SEEING them. 

Giving love can be as simple and as powerful as making people feel seen. 

Give this and move on. Do not attach to the idea that you then deserve something in return. Give abundantly and freely and see how the love you feel expands. It will return naturally but you must let go of that expectation first. For those who do not reciprocate, love them anyways and move on. 

(Please note: This does not include unrequited love or staying in an abusive relationship. Loving yourself more here is key!) 

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3) HOW WE CAN LOVE BIGGER


"Love is a state of being. Your love is not outside; it is deep within you. You can never lose it, and it cannot leave you." - Eckhart Tolle

I used to hate Valentine's Day. It never felt authentic to me. However, that all changed when I discovered a movement that co-opted Valentine's day for themselves. 

Vday.org
 

I found this organization at a time when I was just discovering my own self worth in this world. When I started to find my own voice and my value as a woman. When I found a deeper sisterhood and love for my female friends and for all women in the world. 

I finally felt that I had SOMETHING BIGGER AND BETTER to do on V-day! 

If you are not a fan of this day and are looking for ways to LOVE BIGGER, I recommend you check out this organization (or another one that resonates with you more) and see where you can make a difference in this world. 

We need more love in this world and what better way than to support others who need it! 

Vday.org is a Global Activist Movement to End Violence Against Women and Girls. 


"One of every three women in the world will personally experience physical or sexual violence." -United Nations
 

I don't know about you but this ain't love!!! 

We make up half of the global population and yet 

where is the love?!
 

If you have a vagina, or love someone in possession of a vagina this is a great global movement to get behind. (Yes, I said vagina. Maybe if we said it more we would love them more!) 

To wrap this all up:

Let today and every day be about Loving yourself more, loving others better, and loving bigger! 
 

I promise that if you do these 3 things, Valentine's Day will be one of your new favorite days of the year! 

-Janine

It's been almost 20 years since V-Day was founded, since Eve Ensler's play "The Vagina Monologues" shattered taboos, sharing the stories of women as they had never been told before. 2018 will be our 20th year.