When it comes to Valentine’s Day, most people focus only on romantic love. However, you may have a better time by recognizing and celebrating all types of love.

According to this article from PsychologyToday.com, “by preoccupying ourselves with romantic love, we risk neglecting other types of love that are more stable or readily available.” In the long run, these other types of love prove to be “more healing and fulfilling.”

So, what are these other types of love? And how can you recognize them?

The Ancient Greeks had different names for different types of love. Here’s a brief look at three of them:

  • Philia refers to the sense of connection and goodwill that exists among friends. This type of love is built on companionship, dependability, and trust.
  • Storge (pronounced “store-jay”) refers to familial love, like the love between parents and children. This type of love is built on the bonding that comes with familiarity, caregiving, and dependency.
  • Agape (pronounced “aga-pay”) refers to “universal love,” such as a love for others, nature, or God. It’s also defined as altruism or having a concern for the common good.

As discussed in this month’s Wellness article (Staying Connected is Vital to Your Physical Health), the happiness you give to others boomerangs back to you.

So, while it’s wonderful to celebrate romantic love, it’s also helpful to celebrate these other types of love—on Valentine’s Day or any day.

As February 14th nears, consider reaching out to your friends and let them know you appreciate them.  Or plan a simple activity at home to celebrate your family’s love for each other. Or perform some act of kindness for the greater good.

You’re likely to find activities like these uplifting and rewarding.

And yet, suggestions like these are not always enough. Your Assistance Program is here to help, by guiding you to the right information, resources, and referrals.