A Sweet Valentine’s Day Activity
February 12, 2015
So, how are you with Valentine’s Day? Such a divisive one, ol’ V day! Thankfully, my good mom always made a thing of it with us at home (she still sends us cards and treats!), and it seems to have blessedly stuck as a nice time to celebrate love of all kinds, without much romantic pressure. I’ll maybe make some heart-shaped pancakes for my guys, and we’ll spend the day as a family, easy peasy. It’s Karneval here (the Rhineland’s Mardi Gras) so we’ll be getting showered by gummy bears and paprika chips in an all-ages sea of wildly costumed Rhinelanders!
But after we tuck J in, Achim and I are going to snuggle up and do a sweet little exercise that I’ve been wanting to try for months! (No, no, nothing like that! Well – that’s not what I’m referring to anyway… 😉 ) I came across it in this book by Dr. Martin Seligman…
Seligman, if you’re not familiar, is a psychologist and natural curmudgeon himself who’s super into figuring out all the practical joy-making stuff we can do. He’s cool.
The exercise comes from a chapter on happy couples (though it could be for anyone dear), and it sounds lovely.
Here’s how it goes:
Separately, take a look at the words below and mark the three strengths that best describe your sweetie.
curiosity, wisdom, love of learning, judgement, ingenuity, social intelligence, perspective, valour, perseverance, integrity, kindness, loving, citizenship, fairness, leadership, self-control, prudence, humility, appreciation of beauty, gratitude, hope, spirituality, forgiveness, humour, zest
For each word you choose, think of a recent time when they showed that strength in a way that you admire. Write it all down. Exchange whatcha wrote with your sweetie. Feel the love.
And that’s it!
The idea is that we’ve all got these sort of top strengths that we hold dearly. When we’re rocking those strengths, we feel really good about ourselves – and when our partner sees them too, well, that’s just the best ever. And so we work those strengths even more to live up to their vision, which ends up making both of us feel great. Seligman calls it a “fondness exercise” because the whole thing – seeing our partner’s strengths, and being seen – really warms us to each other!
I actually think it’d be a nice thing to do for anyone beloved – kids, siblings, dear friends, quirky bus drivers…
Does it sound appealing to you? I’m very curious about how it’ll feel. I admit, I def take my dear dude for granted, so honestly I’m looking forward to slowing down and doing this for him … okay, and seeing what he says for me! 😉 I’ll let you know how it goes.
And that’s all for now! I hope your Valentine’s Day is just delightful, filled with love of any and all stripes and colours.
p.s. My blog’s been up for a month this week – yeah! Happy Birthday, Bloggy!