Getting over a breakup is difficult and painful. But once you made the decision to get over an ex and move forward, you´ve won half the fight.
Tell me, how do you move on from a failed relationship? I mean move on literally. ~ Mandy
What is the path from loss and sorrow to healing and happiness? This is often the first question you ask when you´re fresh from a breakup. Ironically, the answer is rarely obvious and that´s thanks to a numbing pain and a confused mind.
In fact, when you`re overcome by grief, focusing on the light at the end of the tunnel is downright impossible.
But hear this … right now, the best thing for you to do is to accept the challenge head on. This is the best time for you to examine every aspect of your life. This breakup is the best time for you to change your life for the better, inside and out.
A breakup, regardless of how much it hurts, always has an upside. As long as you are determined and willing to do the job, it presents you opportunities to better your life.
Here are the three steps to getting over a breakup.
1. Go “No Contact” With Your Ex
“In order to truly get past your breakup, you need to separate emotionally, physically and physiologically from the relationship, and the primary way to do that is to stop talking to an ex”, says Susan J. Elliott, author of Getting Past Your Breakup: How to Turn a Devastating Loss into the Best Thing That Ever Happened to You.
You need that space to heal, to find your own identity yet again, to weigh and examine things out, and to move forward without being dragged back every now then to the source of your grief.
You need to cut the cord.
There is no such thing as “we can still be friends”. At least not now when you are still hurting. Maybe later, when you´ve fully gotten over him.
The last breakup I had before I met my husband was tough. My ex was also a colleague whom I rubbed shoulders with every single working day. But we managed to cut the contact; we avoided each other like the plague as much as we could.
I removed his number from my phone. I removed him from my contacts in Yahoo Messenger (where we used to regularly chat after work). Although I didn´t remove him from my Facebook account, I stayed away from Facebook for a long time.
Disengaging from each other proved helpful in making us get over our pain rather quickly.
2. Take care of yourself.
After I broke up with my ex (the former colleague), I started putting myself first. I focused on my grooming and style. When during the relationship I was stylish, after the relationship I became even more stylish.
I was so lucky during the time of my breakup because I had three girlfriends who rallied by my side and became my support team. Together, we made fashion and style our new hobby. We discovered new (budget) places to shop, and we learned to create gorgeous outfits for less.
That new hobby was what catapulted my writing career. I put up a blog to share my personal style, and the rest is history. I´ve been doing full-time blogging and writing for over four years now.
I also focused on my job. I developed mindfulness. When I was at work, I put my entire head on the task at hand. It didn´t matter to me that my ex was just on the other side of the wall. Instead of letting the pain ruin my career the way I always did in the past, I used it as a challenge to get ahead at work. By the end of the year, I was able to negotiate a 20% salary increase.
I also did new things I never did before such as seeing a high-profile musical show and dining at the most exquisite panoramic restaurant in the city with my girls.
I took good care of myself. I put myself first. And it fueled my self-esteem like never before.
Taking care of yourself should start right away after the breakup. Do good things to yourself daily. Be nice to that little girl in you. Affirm yourself for every little achievement. Set goals and work for them. And build a support group.
3. Work out the grief.
After a breakup you may feel numbed for a time, and then reality hits hard. Once the feelings of loss and grief start to surface, you have three options—to avoid the pain, to ignore the pain, or to acknowledge the pain and deal with it.
You avoid the pain through unhealthy behaviors such as excessive eating or shopping, sex, drugs, rebound relationships, workaholism, or wanting to get your ex back.
You ignore the pain by acting like nothing happened and get on with life like usual.
You acknowledge and deal with the pain by giving yourself time to grieve. Allow yourself to cry a river. If one day you woke up and you don´t want to do anything but just cry, then so be it.
In the week following my breakup, I took two days off from work. I stayed in my apartment and just cried and cried. There were weekends when I didn´t go out of my room. I mourned for the failed relationship behind closed doors. But there were also many days when I used my friends´ shoulders to cry on.
There were times when the pain was too much that I didn´t know if I would survive. But what I did was pray. I prayed a lot. It was during those moments when I felt God´s embrace.
Don´t avoid the pain. Don´t ignore it. Deal with it and let yourself grieve. You need this grieving process in order to move forward and get over the breakup.
Anyone who has experienced dealing with a failed relationship knows how challenging and painful it can be. I`ve been there several times and I know how it feels.
When I was younger I had no idea how to deal with a breakup so I chose to either avoid the pain or ignore it, but only to have the feelings of loss and grief bounce back and knock me down.
So on my last failed relationship, I chose to do the right thing and went through the process of overcoming and moving (NOT “on” but) forward. Not only did I emerge healthy and happy after getting over my ex, but it led me to finding my true love and launching a new gorgeous career that I enjoy ´till today (a bonus!).
Indeed, getting over a breakup can be the best thing that ever happened to you.