Do you remember those little candy conversation hearts we had as kids? They said things like, “Be My Valentine” “Hot Stuff” “Be Mine” and more. They were fun ways as kids to tell another what we wanted or send a little love text.

On this love awareness week, I find myself reflecting on the limited, albeit slowly expanding definitions we have of love in America. Those little candies once seemed so innocent today can have messages now deemed inappropriate. I want you to be a part of this expanding definition of love. Love expands when we expand the love that we are.

In America, love is a BIG deal! We devote one whole day to exploring love between people. According to the National Retail Federation the average American will spend $136.57 on Valentines Day. Most of the love focused on love between significant partners. Yet, mindful love is so much more.

Mindfulness is simple, but not easy. It is the practice of becoming fully present in every moment without judgment. Your presence is the best present you can ever give to a person.

As I teach the practice of mindful leadership, the most critical thing you can do is become more loving to yourself. What if I could have a little heart conversation with myself? What you say wires of your brain, these thoughts becomes your beliefs and actions. Start now with self-love then expand that love into the world.

Here is a collection of conversations I have with myself on a daily basis.

Join me, this week mindfully expand the way you live love by loving yourself more. Judge yourself less. Stop saying I am so busy. I am so afraid. I am so sad. I am so overwhelmed. Stop! Eat a new candy. I’ll share mine with you. Feed yourself a mindfully positive message.

As Kahlil Gibran, states, Your work is love made visible. Take a moment to work on visualizing your self-love this week.

If you are like me and do not like to eat the real candy hearts, here is a little fun. A little web page where you can make your own calorie-free heart candies. Make a few and post them around your home or office as a reminder.

Mindful presence matters,