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Valentine’s Day can be tough — some people love it and others love to loathe it. While we can surely understand that, we also think that any day centered on being intentional with those around you is fine in our book. It just may take some reimagining (and a bit of creativity) to see new ways of making someone smile.
That’s why we’ve teamed up with Shutterfly to bring you some foolproof advice for making anyone’s day — Valentine’s or otherwise. Below we’re sharing four key things to keep in mind to ensure authenticity is always at the heart of any gift.
1. Be unexpected.
Don’t wait for a calendar to remind you that it’s time to think of your friends. While Valentine’s Day is a great jumping off point for a framed picture or sweet card (which, PS. Shutterfly makes super easy through the use of their new Art Library), sometimes the best gifts are ones that come out of the blue — just because. There is no set rule that restricts surprises to birthdays or national holidays, so don’t be afraid to think outside the box and send out something special on a random Wednesday. It’ll show your friend they are worth thinking about, regardless of what else is going on in the world.
2. Be thoughtful.
Has a friend had a hard time recently? Conquered a fear? Tried something new? Experienced heartbreak? Taking notice of the big and small things going on in someone else’s life communicates your presence and that you are a consistent source of encouragement. Valentine’s Day, in particular, has the potential to make certain highs higher and other lows lower, so be the friend that thinks ahead and isn’t afraid to “cheers” whatever a certain day brings.
3. Be specific.
We might think that some things are obvious, but it’s amazing what hearing something spoken or reading via written word can do for the soul. If you’ve witnessed a certain characteristic, talent or keen eye in a friend, tell them! This can be as intimate as encouraging a spouse with a timely word or as removed as telling a coworker that she has really pretty handwriting. Details matter and people remember them, so be specific and see what develops.
4. Be hopeful.
This kind of goes without saying, but we will anyway: Any gift or thoughtful note should always paint a picture of a positive future. Be a championer, what would you like to see for someone else’s life this year in their career, their relationships or otherwise? If it’s been a rougher season acknowledge that, but don’t dwell on what may have been lost. Remind of the good that’s to come. And be specific while you’re at it! (Wink.)
How do you like to make Valentine’s Day (or any day) extra special?
Images via Milena Mallory