Steps to Healing and Recovery After a Breakup
Each and every one of us has been hurt at some point in life. Breakups are especially painful. The feelings that result are ones we wouldn't want to experience again. We may be left with emotions that torment our minds to the point of affecting our physical health.
We feel bitter, angry, hateful, and sad. We begin developing a sense of loneliness and don't feel like doing anything or seeing anyone. We cry in our closets, hug our teddy bears, and pray our world comes to an end.
It becomes hard to know how we will recover. Inside our hearts, getting over the breakup seems insurmountable and we are sure nobody knows how much pain we are in.
But even though it seems impossible, the fact of the matter is that you can get over a breakup. Here are some ways to manage your feelings and move on now that your relationship is over.
1. Accept the Fact You Are Hurt
Don’t run away from your feelings. Don’t pretend you have not been affected. Don’t act like it's not a big deal, because it is. You might think you are fooling other people, but you're only fooling yourself.
When someone tells you, “It must be hard,” don’t reply, “It hasn’t affected me” or say that you're doing fine. Say, “It's hard, but I know it'll get better with time.”
When you pretend you haven't been affected, it means you haven’t admitted that the breakup happened and that you have suppressed your emotions.
No one is immune to hurt. There are hurts that can totally weaken a person. You’re not the only one who has experienced it. Take heart that you are not alone, that many others know what it's like to feel the way you do.
2. Deal With Your Feelings
Don’t suppress your emotions if you want to recover. Experiencing the pain helps you know that whatever you are going through is real. It's not an illusion — it's a fact.
Suppressing the negative emotions will work against you. You might think you have dealt with them by ignoring them, but you haven't. Later, they will haunt you by tormenting your mind, and you might become angry, hateful, or bitter. The only way to deal with them is to feel them.
3. Don't Keep It to Yourself
You shouldn’t hurt alone. It is good to confide what you are feeling to someone else. It may be your closest friend or somebody else whose judgement you can trust. This will help you open up, understand what you're going through, and ultimately recover and move on from the break up.
4. Write It Down
Write down what and how you are feeling. Put all of the feelings on paper — both good and bad.
Scientific studies have discovered that writing does help in the healing process as it helps you release bitter emotions.
It works the same way when you tell someone how you're feeling. Sometimes it's also helpful to go back and read what you've written. This may help you know what to do in the future.
5. Take a Break From Your Ex
Breakups are tiring and stressful. You are wounded — not externally, but internally. You need to take a break so that the wound can heal. Your ex does not matter anymore — they can't help you. Now it's up to you.
You are the one who has to allow the healing process to take place. If you don’t start it, you will never recover. You can take a break by not contacting your ex at all through texting, calling, or any social media. You are the one who matters now, not your ex or your previous relationship.
6. Don't Turn Against Yourself
Don’t hate yourself. Don’t blame yourself for too long for either the breakup or the relationship. Don’t keep questioning whether you were its cause or not.
Don't feel unworthy because you were dumped or because you dumped your ex. Don’t tell yourself you are stupid, that you don’t deserve another partner, or that another relationship will never work out (even if it is your fourth breakup.)
In general, don't entertain any negative thoughts about yourself. We all make mistakes but we learn from them and hope to change for the better. No one is worse than anyone else.
7. Damage the "Video Tape"
If you want to heal and recover from your breakup, you need to stop re-running the good memories you shared with your ex in your head. Your mind has done a wonderful job of getting rid of the not-so-good memories and concentrated only on the good parts of the relationship that you had with your ex.
But the reality is that you are denying the fact the relationship did come to an end. You are trying to escape the pain by getting lost in the past. Damage the video tape.
8. No More Love Songs
You should take a break from listening to any love songs, both sad and not sad. When you listen to love songs, they will remind you of your relationship and make you long for your ex.
They will fill you with thoughts that you shouldn't entertain. Listen to uplifting, encouraging, motivating, and challenging songs. The only exception should be love songs that talk about moving on. This is not a time to think about love or be reminded of it.
9. Experience the World
Don’t lock yourself in your closet for long. As much as the world might hurt you, it also has a lot of good things to offer. Don’t mourn for too long. Don’t hide inside.
Get out and see the world. Breathe in the fresh air. Consider the beauty that is still left and know that the hurt won't last forever. Let the beauty of the world enlighten and inspire you.
10. Forgive Your Ex
There is no benefit in holding a grudge against your ex. You gain nothing by hating them and remaining angry. It will only become a burden to you. Forgiving your ex has several benefits.
- You don’t let the negative emotions control your mind.
- You learn to be strong when you are hurt by somebody.
- You are reminded that your life is not dictated by a failed relationship or an ex who was inconsiderate of you.
11. Forget the Pain
Once you have forgiven your ex, be determined not to remember the pain. When you remember it, your chances of healing and recovering will be jeopardized.
Hurts are never meant to be remembered. They are meant to let you know that hurt is inevitable, and one should rise above it by learning to be strong when you face it.
12. Don't Forget to Forgive Yourself
Try to forgive yourself. It doesn't matter who broke up with who — if you blame yourself and start conjuring bad thoughts, you will find yourself in a downward spiral of negativity. Give yourself a break. Don't let negative thoughts rule your mind.
13. Read Books, Watch Movies, and Exercise
Read poems, novels, and books that have nothing to do with romance (except ones that concentrate on how to get over breakups and deal with the hurt that comes from someone wronging you).
Watch movies like documentaries and comedies. And exercise! Exercise helps a great deal when recovering from a breakup.
Just remember that you don’t want to concentrate on anything concerning past love, so avoid everything that reminds you of that.
14. Recovery Is Your Decision
If you don’t come to the conclusion you want to heal and recover from the breakup, you never will. You have to decide to do what you can to realize the results.
If you are determined to come out of this in one piece, you will. Therefore, decide to do whatever it takes. Concentrate on yourself and you will be able to move on.