Breakups are at the top of the list of one of the most emotional and stressful events that you can go through in life. Breaking off a relationship, whatever the circumstances are, usually brings up unsettling and draining emotions. It’s a loss that represents many things, like the memories and experiences you once shared. Even though some breakups can be mutual or of your own desire, they can be just as painful.
Some of the worst parts of a breakup come from the unknown. Your day-to-day life becomes disrupted because of the change. You begin to feel uncertain about the future, conjecturing what your life will be like without this person or if you will ever find someone else again. Recovering from a broken relationship often takes time, and it can be an unpleasant experience. However, there are many ways in which to deal with this to help move forward. Here are 10 tips on how to cope and deal with a breakup. These are the little things that have helped me get through that troublesome period.
Don’t be too hard on yourself.
For me, I find it difficult to take a step back and give myself permission to lie low for a while when I’m not feeling emotionally well. An enormous step in coping with a breakup is to allow yourself to function at a lower level than usual. When we go through something traumatic, where there’s a great deal of hurt, there’s usually less productivity and energy. By allowing yourself to be less active or by putting yourself first, you’re granting yourself time to slowly heal. This will help you to re-energize, and help you feel better mentally and physically.
Tip: Reconnect with yourself by booking an appointment at your favorite spa, go shopping, or wake up super early and watch the sunrise.
Grieving is a natural emotion that comes from loss, so allow yourself time to mourn.
Breakups encompass the loss of companionship, support, and the future you planned. It’s scary to endure grief and to mourn, as these come with intense emotions, however, grieving is essential to letting go and moving on. I do this by identifying and acknowledging my feelings. Writing my thoughts in my journal is a great way to process them. I notice that if I suppress or fight my feelings; I end up prolonging the sadness.
Next, never forget that the goal is to move on and avoid the urge to call or text your ex. Express your feelings by talking with friends or journaling, but don’t dwell on them or get stuck in negative emotions like anger. Each day you should heal a little bit more and be on the path towards moving on.
Think positive thoughts.
When breakups occur, the last thing you’re thinking is “it’s not as bad as it seems.” The initial shock and disappointment can make it hard to be upbeat about the situation. However, what will help you move on is reminding yourself that life will go on. When your relationship ends, it also signals a loss of the hopes and plans you had for your future with this person.
I try to encourage myself to create new hopes and plans to replace these old ones. Life will still go on, it’s not the end of the world, and I still have a future in front of me—even if it’s not the one I had planned. By reminding myself daily of these things, I consume my mind with positive thoughts, instead of dwelling on the negative ones.
Tip: By jotting down all the positives that can come from the situation, it can aid in your healing. Don’t forget to include new goals like traveling to a place you’ve always wanted to visit, spending more time with friends, and all the other things you’ve wanted to do but haven’t had the time.
When we go through a breakup, we learn lessons from the relationship and about yourselves.
These lessons help us grow as individuals and help us learn from our mistakes. While we may feel pessimistic at the moment, we can find hope by realizing that this situation is essential in our growth as an individual. After a breakup, when I look back at the relationship, I need to understand what happened so I can process it. We don’t always get an answer as to what went wrong, and accepting that is also part of the healing voyage. Writing your thoughts down or talking with someone can help you make sense of it all.
The lessons you learned from your past relationship will help bring guidance into what you want (and don’t want) in a future relationship. It will also give you the opportunity to learn more about yourself and understand what you need to work on for your own personal growth.
Having a support system is critical for your heart.
This is essential since it can help with feelings of loneliness that often occur right after a breakup. If you isolate yourself from others out of sadness, you will make the healing process more difficult. When I’m feeling down, I’ll meet up with my friends or family since they’ve all been through breakups and I trust their advice. Venting helps to release all those negative emotions, rather than bottling them up inside. Having a good support system, whether it’s a therapist, friends, or family, can aid in healing and make it a lot less painful. Choose to confide in the type of people who will assure you that you will recover and when you’re ready, you will find love again.
Tip: If you’ve lost friends or parts of your social life during your relationship, doing community activities, volunteering, or joining a club can open the doors to meeting new people.
Treating yourself is always essential, but it is even more important right now.
Self-care should be your new best friend. Whether it’s exercising, listening to music, starting a hobby, or going to brunch with friends, be sure to make this a daily activity. By paying attention to how you feel and what you need, you’re honoring yourself and ultimately healing.
Tip: Create a playlist of upbeat happy songs and listen to it while you’re taking a walk or cleaning.
Getting your mind off constantly thinking about the breakup is key to moving on.
Sometimes distracting yourself from your thoughts can bring about happiness. A good way to do this is to find new interests or hobbies. While breaking up signals an end, it also allows for new beginnings; which can be discovering a hobby that you end up loving. Trying new activities gives you the opportunity to be present and enjoy your life, rather than dwelling on your past. This is especially true if you lost friends during your relationship. Now’s the time to reconnect or you could try volunteering or joining a club as a way to meet new people.
Healthy choices are tough to make when you’re sad.
You might lose your appetite or start binging on unhealthy foods, like ice cream or chips. Eating away the pain is common, but it will make you feel worse about yourself. Unhealthy eating combined with a lack of sleep, and little to no exercise may be more of a coping mechanism in the beginning. However, as soon as you make healthy choices, you’re going to feel better. I’ve noticed that when I’m mindful about how I’m taking care of myself, I bounce back a lot faster. For me, it’s eating plenty of fruits and veggies (while not skipping meals), drinking plenty of water, and getting eight hours of sleep. All these factors help me achieve mental clarity which leads to overall happiness. Also, when you focus on your health and the positive choices you can make, it can be a new motivator to grow as a person. Once you address this, you will fixate less on the breakup and more on the person you’re on the path to becoming.
Avoid using alcohol as a way to cope.
Some people run to the bottle when they’re going through a rough breakup. However, excessive drinking to temporarily numb your pain and as a means to escape is unhealthy and destructive. I love to go out with my friends and have a few drinks now and then, but to drink as a way to escape from my emotions will only make me feel worse. It will pause any progress I’ve made towards moving forward and instead, I may regress and become mired in my negative feelings. There are much healthier ways to cope, as addressed in this post.
Instead of searching for a rebound or obsessing over the person you lost, try creating a loving relationship with yourself.
Some relationships fail because of how we feel about ourselves. If you’re unsure of who you are, or you don’t have sufficient love and respect, it’s difficult to maintain a healthy relationship. Settling for someone who doesn’t deserve our love, not trusting your significant other, or not knowing when to walk away are all caused by insecurity.
These 10 steps have helped me to get through a breakup and heal in the process. Hopefully, doing all or even some of these steps will help you discover a new and healthy relationship with yourself, and then with another person when you’re truly ready.
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