Valentine’s Day is an interesting, often challenging holiday for many women. If you’re in love it’s heady, fun and exciting. If you’re not Valentine’s Day can be lonely, depressing and a painful reminder that no one’s bringing you flowers, chocolate and love’s perfect kiss. But the Hallmark holiday doesn’t have to be that way.

This Valentine’s Day fall in love with yourself. Make it more than just a day to show your love for others. Celebrate it as an opportunity to send love to YOU not just on February 14th, but on the other 364 days of the year. After all the number one relationship that determines the quality of all the other relationships in your life is your relationship with yourself.

Perhaps you’re thinking, “I don’t have time to love myself.” As women we’re programmed to put everyone and everything else first — the kids, our spouse, the house, the dog, our car, our career… By the end of the day we’re exhausted, and there’s no time or energy left for self-care and self-love.

I get it. I used to be last on my to-do list too, more likely to take out the garbage than take myself out for lunch. But then I started practicing self-compassion and scheduling in self-care. And here’s what I discovered: I was happier, my life felt balanced, and I had so much more energy that everything else just fell in place.

But isn’t self-love selfish or self-indulgent? That’s another misconception. As Anita Moorjani explains: “Selfishness comes from too little self-love not too much. When I’m being love, I don’t feel drained, and I don’t need people to behave a certain way in order to feel cared for or to share my magnificence with them. They’re automatically getting love as a result of me being my true self.”

Loving yourself doesn’t mean you prioritize your personal needs over those of others, but it also means that you don’t subordinate them. Including yourself in your circle of love and compassion multiplies love in your life and dissolves your sense of separation.

So drop the self-judgment and self-sacrifice and try something new this Valentine’s Day: Love yourself.

DrEllen is a Psychologist, Registered Dietitian Nutritionist, Certified Health & Wellness Coach & Reiki Master. The Glow & Grow Coach, DrEllen empowers women to harmonize the dance of their lives with the song in their hearts and flow with grace, beauty and ease. She’s passionate about helping women let go of who they think they’re supposed to be, embrace who they are and step into their brilliance.