Whether you’re in a relationship, single, or just all-around complicated, Valentine’s Day is either the best or worst day of the year. It’s unquestionably THE most commercialized holiday — possibly in existence.

It’s why Restaurant Week is perfectly timed to end a week before, and why jewelers, floral companies and chocolatiers spend so many ad dollars after the Super Bowl, just to name a few reasons.

It’s also a known fact guys put way too much pressure on themselves on this day, often feeling like the more they spend, the better. As someone who appreciates the significance of the holiday, you don’t have to be over the top or uber-complicated.

So while flowers and candy are sweet (see Uber promo), depending on your relationship, that may not be enough. And if you were thinking of taking her to dinner at that expensive restaurant where it’s so loud she can’t hear you from across the table, understand you weren’t the only genius who had that idea. So what can you do? 

Anything — as long as you follow my 3-step model for a successful Valentine’s Day Date.

1. Have a plan. When setting up the date, make it so she feels you were thinking specifically about her. Remember, it doesn’t have to be crazy — just the fact you have plans will get her excited about you. PROTIP: If you want to make it a surprise, that’s fine, just tell her what she should wear (maybe suggest that sexy dress you love).

2. Be different. Look to create an experience based on something only you would know about her. One of the best ideas I pulled was actually getting a professional chef to come to my place and cook my date’s favorite meal. She didn’t even think I knew what it was. This is where you can take the “little things” and take it to creatively unique level.

3. Flirt like crazy. Flirting hasn’t changed since the days of sweating your kindergarden crush. Part of being romantic is reliving the fun “dance” you played when you two first met. It was fun then and it’s fun now, no matter how long you’ve been together.

And what if you’re single? Did you know Valentine’s Day is one of the biggest hookup holidays of the year? If a venue isn’t having dinner specials, they’re likely having an “Anti-Valentine’s Day” or Valentine’s Day Sucks” party. As someone who has been helping singles find love for years, I see this holiday as “Singles Awareness Day.” 

When it comes to going to a good event, it’s important to find the right venue. Normally, bars that have a combination of tasty cocktails, decent lighting (for a good environment), and dancing will ensure there will be opportunities to flirt and have playful interactions. When it comes to approaching, if someone is out on Valentine’s Day, chances are they’re looking to meet someone so be sure to make your move.

For both strategies, the common theme lies within this quote: “success comes to those who plan for it.” Remember, Valentine’s Day isn’t a holiday for couples. It’s a celebration for lovers. So go out, have fun, and your Valentine will follow.