So you’ve just broken up with someone you were in a romantic relationship with. I’m sorry – whether you were completely surprised by the break up or instigated it yourself, it’s gut wrenching to let someone go. In the future, you may realise you are better off without that person. But the pain that we feel between the break up and the healing takes time. Here are six ways you can cope and heal from a broken heart.
- Let yourself cry
Don’t try to just ‘get over it’. Someone who you had very strong feelings for, and possibly loved, is no longer in your life. Your mind, body and heart may feel overwhelmed. Don’t be surprised if you feel exhausted and lethargic, or irritable and depressed. While these feelings are uncomfortable, they demand to be felt. So give yourself a safe space to express them. Cry or walk or write or sing or yell – it doesn’t have to make sense. And do this as many times as you need too. The grief will lessen over time, but it will still be there. So be gracious with yourself.
- Tell somebody you trust
Don’t go through a break up alone. Depending on the nature of the relationship, you may be hesitant to tell people about what happened. That makes sense – there can be a lot of grief, fear and shame involved with breakups. But find at least one person you really trust and open up to them. Let them support you as you cry, feel anger, despair and eventually, hope. It you sense that you need more long-term emotional support, consider seeing a counsellor.
- Get outside
Grief is insular, and it leaves us with little to no energy for basic functioning. Given this, it’s tempting to stay in bed or park yourself in front of the TV all day. There is time for this, but try and get outside at least once a day to remind yourself the world is still turning. Yes, this hurts. But it also gives you hope. Breathe in the air, see the life around you, and surrender. The outside world is a reminder that the pain will pass and something new is on the way.
- Figure out your motivation
We all respond to heartbreak in unique ways. Some people retreat and may get stuck in a rut of pain. Other people try to avoid the pain all together and are dating someone new the next day. There’s no right way to deal with your heartbreak, but you need to ask yourself what is motivating your actions. If you’re taking part in risk taking behaviour in an effort to make your ex jealous, or to try and prove you are loveable, then chances are you need to put a pause on dating for a second and process your emotions. But if you’ve spent months tucked away, and refuse to socialise or resume everyday activities, then it’s time to take small steps towards socialising again. Perhaps that means trying online dating. Or maybe it’s just a matter of texting a friend for the first time in ages. You know what you need.
- Stop playing the blame game
It’s normal to go over the dynamics of the broken relationships and feel anger, frustration and betrayal. And it is important you consider what happened in the relationship and how it impacted you, them, and your life. But regurgitating the story and blaming your ex over and over is doing you a disservice. Take responsibility for your part in the relationship. Rest knowing you are not responsible for their behaviours and start letting it go. Don’t tie yourself to conflict that eats you alive. It will get easier with time.
- Learn from it
When you are ready, ask yourself what you have learned from this relationship. Did you miss any red flags? Did your relationship fall apart due to a lack of communication? Did you change for better or worse when you were in that relationship? Did you take part in unhealthy or aggressive behaviour that harmed your partner or children? These are all essential questions if you want to love again healthily. Don’t question your worth – you are still worthy of love and will love again. But learning from the past gives you the freedom not to return to old toxic patterns. Whether it’s who you choose to be in a relationship with, or how you interact with a future partner, you have the ability to to make the future more beautiful and better for you.
Are you going through a break up? Would you like to learn healthier ways to function in a relationship? Contact Colleen on 0434 337 245 or Duncan on 0434 331 243 for a FREE 10-minute phone consultation on how we can best help you, or press book now.