Valentine’s Day can pucker up and kiss my ample rear. That’s right, I said it! It’s a totally made-up thing aimed at draining your hard-earned money out of your bank account just so you can ‘fit in’ on 14th February and live up to some strange societal expectation to show your love. It makes no sense. If you’re Anti-Valentine’s like Matt and me, you’re probably doing some pre-eye-roll warm-ups and getting ready to feel annoyed by the whole damn thing. To help you survive appropriately and have an enjoyable, sensible 14th February, here are my top 10 tips on how to have a great Anti-Valentine’s Day!

1. Donate to a charity

Rather than spending hundreds of dollars on roses, chocolates, gifts, and a ridiculously priced dinner donate money to a charity instead. Don’t buy into the bullshit big brands are trying to sell us! You don’t need to spend your money on gifts to show someone you love them. Instead, tell them you love them each and every single day and take the money you would’ve wasted on superficial crap and donate it to giving young girls in underprivileged countries access to education! Those girls need your money more than any big business does. You can donate to Care and contribute your hard-earned dollars to bettering the life of a young girl in serious need.

2. Watch horror movies

If I have to watch an ensemble cast movie like, oh, I don’t know, Valentine’s Day, I’m going to scream. Instead, host your very own slasher movie marathon or watch some really twisted horror flicks. Heck, I’ve really gotten into watching those psychological thrillers from the 90s, you know, the Ashley Judd peak period. Beer is essential. Popcorn is 100% necessary and you can even make out later if you like.

3. Love yourself

Alright, I’ll admit, that title sounds really lame, but it’s not. Hear me out. Spend some time on February 14th taking really good care of yourself. You can do it with your sweetie, don’t worry, you just don’t need to leave the house and spend $200 on dinner. Instead, crack open a bottle of wine and talk about all the things you’re thankful for. Split a pizza (or two) and share your hopes and dreams for the future. Take some time out to meditate, go to a yoga class, do something creative, start reading that book you’ve been putting off or just sleep in until 10am! Love yourself and… Treat Yo Self!

4. Let it go

If you hate Valentine’s Day because someone broke your heart or you’re single, then use it as the day you let all of that crap go. Shred photos of your ex, write them a letter and pour your heart out then put it in a saucepan and set it on fire (safely). Kick, scream, cry, shout, purge and then let it all go. Snip the mental cord and set all of your sadness, worries, fears, doubts, reservations, hatred, shame and misery free. You’re in control of your life and your feelings, so let it all go and just be happy.

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5. Feast like a beast

The idea of having Matt feed me chocolate covered strawberries makes me feel extremely awkward and also very queasy. When I eat, I wanna eat… not put on some weird sexy food show. Gross. What better way to give Valentine’s Day the big up-yours than to activate beast mode and feast like your life depends on it. We’re talking real un-sexy foods like super sticky chicken wings and glazed ribs, big greasy slices of pizza and huge bowls of spaghetti covered in red sauce. Get stuck into a massive burger or a totally overstuffed hot-dog. You’ll know it’s the right kind of food to choose because it’ll be the kind to get all over your face. Perfect.

6. Start a health kick

Invest your hard-earned money in your own health and well-being! Get some acupuncture done or organise some sessions with a personal trainer or a nutritionist to help you get started with food and exercise plans. Invest in new workout gear, a gym or yoga membership. Spend your money on a juicer or blender to make healthy treats. Do up a new 30-day health plan for yourself and make 14th February day one!

7. Have a vacation

All the money that could have been wasted on flowers, chocolates, dinner and gifts could be spent on a night or two away. If you can’t go away on the 14th, make it the weekend before or after instead. Book yourself one or two nights at an Airbnb or check-in to a nice hotel. Heck, stay at a backpackers or go camping, whatever works for you budget-wise. But use that money to create a trip you’ll remember for a while to come and use it to bring some adventure and relaxation into your life.

8. Give someone a goat

If you absolutely must give someone a gift, make it a live animal! Yep, that’s right, you can visit Oxfam’s Online Shop and buy a duck for a family in Bangladesh for $30 or give a family in Mozambique a goat for $100.

9. Help out your Grandma

There are a million things my grandma needs help with and most of the time I put them off. That said, I have become the unofficial dog groomer to her rag-tag bunch of poodles. Rather than wasting your time at a stupid restaurant watching lovesick couples suck face across the table while you try to keep your entree down, go visit your Grandma. She’d love to have a cup of tea with you, I’m sure, so take her some cake, some flowers and offer to help out with whatever she needs done around the house.

10. Date your dog

Your dog spends every day of the year loving you unconditionally. If you have cats, like us, they spend every day of the year tolerating your existence and watching you scoop their poop. Take your dog on a date, goodness knows it deserves it! Take your dog shopping at the RSPCA Store, take her out for a few hours at her favourite dog park or the beach. Give her a really good grooming session, the full head-to-toe treatment and buy her a bag of treats. If anyone deserves your love, time and money on Valentines’ Day, it’s your dog. If you have a cat, you’re welcome to try and date it, but I don’t think it’s going to go well for you.

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