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Sweaty palms. Shallow breath. Heart racing. Ring box in the pocket. Will she (or he!) say yes?

Proposals can be scary no matter what day they happen! Many people choose Valentine’s Day as a day to get engaged. Because it is often known as a time when all lovers celebrate their years together, to many people it seems like a natural time to celebrate choosing to make their life together more official. 

With that in mind, Proposal Day is here to save certain people from that immense pressure of Valentine’s Day by giving them a second chance at getting down on that one knee.

History of Proposal Day

Proposal Day was founded by John Michael O’Loughlin, who initially created the holiday after watching his cousin, who waited for years for her boyfriend to propose, having to finally move on with her life because he never got around to proposing. O’Loughlin designed this holiday to remind people of the possibility of proposing before life passes by and it’s too late! 

Because it falls not too long after Valentine’s day, the founder decided to make this holiday take place on the vernal equinox. This is the day when the stars and planets align to make life-changing events happen–such as a proposal of marriage. This time, at the change from winter to spring, brings a sense of new beginnings. And what could be more of a new beginning than proposing to the person you love?! 

It is estimated that each year approximately 50,000 couples all over the world now get engaged on this most important of days. That’s certainly a lot of love in the air! 

If it’s not the right time to get engaged just yet, it may at least be a good time to talk as a couple about whether either of you wants marriage and whether your lives are headed toward that possibility.

Proposal Day is your second chance to think about marriage after the more famous Valentine’s Day, the well-known day for lovers, and gives you an excuse to head on over to the diamond store to get that beautiful ring!

How to Celebrate Proposal Day

Proposal Day is a fun day to celebrate because it’s all about people being in love! If no particular ideas come to mind on how to celebrate this day, try these ideas to get started: 

Celebrate By Proposing! 

As long as the time is right, this is a great day to consider taking that big jump into life by proposing marriage to the person of your dreams. Plan out the specifics of the proposal, like where and when to do it. Should you be alone with your significant other or would it be more well-received at a big party? What kind of ring is appropriate or expected for the occasion? Should it be planned out meticulously or spur-of-the-moment? 

It’s a day to find the confidence to take chances and be with the person you love for the long-haul. Find the courage and confidence to get down on that knee, or make time to set up that big moment for the ones you love! 

Watch Proposal and Wedding Films

For those who are already engaged, or who have already gotten married, (or those who just don’t want to be engaged or married!), this day can still be enjoyed! Celebrate Proposal Day (even if somewhat ironically) by watching romantic comedy films all about proposals, engagements, and/or weddings that have gone awry. Here are some favorites who fit that description almost perfectly: 

  • The Proposal (2009). Sandra Bullock plays a Canadian executive who convinces her attractive assistant (Ryan Reynolds) to get quickly engaged so that she can stay in New York. 
  • He’s Just Not That Into You (2009). Featuring an all-star cast, this collection of stories includes a couple who struggles because she wants to be engaged and he isn’t sure. 
  • Leap Year (2010). Based on an old Irish tradition that a woman can propose to a man on Leap Day. This story follows Amy Adams character as she intends to propose to her boyfriend but, when things don’t go as planned, she gets help from a local Irishman, played by Matthew Goode. 
  • Runaway Bride (1999). Featuring Julia Roberts who plays a woman who is somewhat infamous for habitually leaving men at the altar, and the journalist, played by Richard Gere) who goes to report her story. 
  • The Five Year Engagement (2012). This American rom-com features Emily Blunt and Jason Segel as an engaged couple who face the usual struggles accompanying planning a wedding and continual delays that seem to make it virtually impossible to actually get married.

Celebrate a Propsal-versary

Couples who got engaged on Proposal Days in past years should certainly take this opportunity to celebrate the anniversary of their own marriage proposal! Enjoy a candlelight dinner. Go on a romantic walk. Take a weekend getaway. Exchange poems or cards. The options for celebrating for couples who are in love are almost endless! 

When Proposals Didn’t Work 

If you find that your proposal doesn’t work out (or if that special someone dragged their feet so much it finally led to a breakup), then take some time to heal and remember that life can still go forward. 

Approach Proposal Day in a different way by thinking about freedoms that have been gained because that significant other didn’t propose! Proposal Day can be about finding solace in being independent, understanding that there may not be just one true love out there, and that life has its way of letting you know that even through those painful moments of heartbreak, you’re on the right path.  

Share this holiday on social media using the hashtag #proposalday and let your friends and family know about this second chance at marriage.

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John Michael O’Loughlin

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