You’re devastated. Angry. Hurt. You can feel the pain all the way down to your core. After all, this was the “one” or so you thought. Now you know it’s quite the opposite.
So you do the work to let him go. You unfriend him from your social media profiles. You throw out all the old reminders. And his phone number? Deleted. Your friends know better than to even bring his name up. As far as you’re concerned, you never want to hear one word about him again. EVER.
But now what? How on earth do you recover from a breakup that left you crying in your pj’s every night with a tub of Ben & Jerry’s Cherry Garcia and endless Game of Thrones reruns?
A slow, contemplative approach may be the healthiest way forward.
The healing starts when you give yourself permission to grieve.
Which means you need to create the time and space to do just that. A break-up is like a mini-death and even in the most amicable of separations, there will always be sadness present. Cry if you need to. Vent if you must. Rage on. You need to feel those feelings. Really feel those emotions. Do not try to control your grief or run from it. Sit with it and give it the time it needs. As time goes on, the sorrow will ease and begin to diminish. It may take a bit and your grief may be stubborn but release can and does happen. Trust in the process and the wisdom of your heart.
Past relationships are great teachers.
Contemplate what you’ve learned from the relationship. What did your ex teach you about love? What were the main issues between you? How did you show up when those problems arrived? What choices might you make in the future that might be healthier? Get clear on what you’ve learned and you may avoid making the same decisions in the future.
Spend some time doing solo activities.
Get to know you as an individual before you start hitting the singles scene. Time alone doesn’t need to be lonely. Get involved in activities that excite you. Indulge in that passion project you’ve always wanted to do. Meditate or do yoga in your living room. Sign up for a massage . . . or two. And yes, occasional nights on the couch with the telly and some treats may be in order. You might just discover that you like your own company very much.
Hang out with people who inspire you.
Whether that be your wise old Aunt Jean who rides a Harley around the country, attending a spirited Bernie Sanders rally, or going to a Michael Franti concert with your friends (PS Michael Franti music cures everything), time with interesting, uplifting people will raise your spirits.
And finally . . . the hard stuff: forgiveness work.
At some point, you may begin to feel ready to forgive your ex and yourself. This is not easy and it may take a long time before you get here. But forgiveness will free you. You must not force this — it will come easier after you’ve grieved properly and had enough time away from the relationship.
When you are finally ready to do it, it doesn’t need to be face-to-face nor does it need to be in a formal letter (unless you want to). You can simply forgive in your heart.
And when you’ve done all that? You’re not only ready to bounce — you’re ready to spread your wings and soar.
“Be in love with your life. Every minute of it.”
How do you bounce back after a horrible break-up? Share your insights and tips with us in the conversation box below.