Every time Valentine’s Day comes along, I think of the day before Valentine’s Day a couple of years when, as I was leaving the card and gift shop where I’d selected some Valentines, while cursing the materialism dictated to us by Madison Avenue that demanded the expression of feelings with store-bought cards and boxes of candy, mourned the fact that I had no “honey” at the time, thought of the cards I should and should not have received on past Valentine’s Days, worried if I was spending too much, and wondered if my son would remember to let my grand-daughter pick out a card for me...

...the shop owner called out, “Be careful driving, Susan There are a lot of angry lovers out there on the road today.”

It’s coming again … Valentine’s Day … and with it a lot of emotions. It’s also a day you can organize, if you sit down and think about it, using both your IQ and your EQ.

INTENTIONALITY

How do you intend your Valentine’s Day to be?

Intentionality means saying what you mean and meaning what you say, and it also means being responsible and accountable for your motives as well as your actions.

If your intention is to express your love to someone in a meaningful way, this might include thinking about what means love to them. It could be a toaster oven would be greatly appreciated, a poem you’ve written, a kiss on the cheek, an addition to their collection, a power tool, something very gushy or not very gushy, a night of dancing, or not spending any money because you’re both over budget.

At the same time, how to you intend to manage your emotions?

If you take an honest look at the situation, here are some intentions you might have:

· Do you plan to be upset over what happens?
· If you’re single, do you intend to “let it get to you?”
· Do you intend to be disappointed in what your lover gives you, as nothing is good enough?
· Do you intend to keep your expectations in line with reality-testing?
· Do you intend to express your needs, as no one can read your mind, no matter how much they love you?
· Do you intend to spend more than you can afford to and then feel guilty?
· Do you intend to compare yourself, or the gift you receive to others’?
· Do you intend to agree to choose your boss’ gift for his wife even though this causes negative emotions for you?
· Do you intend to let someone else “do” Valentine’s for you, or do you plan to be personally involved in your gift choices?
· Do you intend to be a perfectionist and feel that whatever you buy is wrong, and whatever you do isn’t right?

You could intend to love yourself and enjoy your day!

Intentionality is tough stuff and it means business.

ACCOUNTABILITY

On the more pragmatic level, there are things that need doing. If you intend to observe the day by remembering various people

· Write out your budget
· Make a list of people you wish to remember
· Start writing down ideas for each person
· Remember there’s a whole slew of merchants out there willing to make this easy for you – use the Internet and the telephone
· Start early to avoid pressure
· Plan ahead how you will resist all the last-minutes “specials” coming your way that you know you can’t afford

Valentine’s Day falls on a Friday this week. That’s something you need to know. This means you can send last-minute floral arrangements, and it means that restaurants are going to be absolutely packed on that night, and that babysitters may be hard to come by. Plan accordingly!

Planning is the key to experiencing the joy of Valentine’s Day. It’s your day and you can have it your way!

Author's Bio: 

Susan Dunn, The EQ Coach, offers personal coaching, Internet courses and ebooks for your personal and professional development. Visit her on the web at www.susandunn.cc and mailto:sdunn@susandunn.cc.