We decided it was over, the conversation was amicable enough, however you do need me to tell you the feeling you get after a breakup. It does happen with the best of intentions people grow apart, change in goals and perspectives, the mental stress and even physical health can and will be affected and those sleepless nights, it is important in taking care of yourself after a breakup.
The hard part is to know what to do, the pain of a breakup sometimes is so crippling that you just want to lie around in bed, not a bad idea for a couple of days, however if that is your general disposition then we have a problem, so here goes:
Taking Care of Yourself After a Breakup
When relationships end, people tend to be very hard on themselves. They often replay the last few weeks or months of the failed coupling and think about all of the things they could or should have done differently. Just stop it!
Yes, there are probably things that you wish you could change, but unless you can go back in time and make some changes which of course is impossible then let us move forward. What research shows you can, and should, do is treat yourself with compassion and understanding. Self-compassion involves viewing yourself in with kindness and acceptance, not being overly focused or identified with negative emotions, and acknowledging that many others in the world have likely been where you are now at some point in their lives. Recent work found that divorces who expressed higher levels of self-compassion when talking about the end of their marriage also reported fewer intrusive negative thoughts and feelings about their divorce than those who were less self-compassionate. What was especially impressive was that higher self-compassion predicted reduced negativity even nine months later.
So, be nice to yourself.
FOCUS ON THE GOOD THINGS
This must be the hardest thing to do, however it is a default button that is triggered when there is a break, we look for all the negatives either about ourselves or the individual we were with.
Perhaps now you feel you can cook foods your partner never liked, or finally take that pottery class. Maybe you can simply feel grateful that a painful relationship is over, and in the future look for a better one. There is something that is called the redemptive narrative, it is looking for the good thing from a bad situation, it is seeing the glass as half full when the glass is half empty. There was this song I fell in love with that was done by the 5th Dimensions, ‘One Less Bell to Answer”, each time I experience a breakup, that was my default song, it worked!
Specifically, we found that individuals who had recently split up with a boyfriend or girlfriend experienced less emotional distress over the course of a 5-day study if they looked for the silver linings, or the good things to come out of, the dark cloud of their breakup. I would be the fist to admit that having a song ready for a breakup is shameful, haha, however they say be ready for anything.
SURROUND YOURSELF WITH THINGS YOU ENJOY
When we’re in a romantic relationship, we tend to become increasingly similar to our partner over time (Aron & Aron, 1997). This is a good thing for both us and our relationship—while the relationship is ongoing. That said, this overlap between ourselves and our partner can get us into trouble when the relationship ends. Generally speaking, when we lose a relationship, we can lose part of ourselves, and become confused about who we are. This is actually part of what is so upsetting about the end of a relationship (Slotter at al., 2010). Notably, this self-upheaval tends to be worse the more committed we were to our now-defunct relationship. However, recent work has shown that this isn’t always the case. Gary Lewandowski and colleagues (2007) have shown that when a relationship wasn’t satisfying while it was ongoing, individuals actually experience self-growth after their breakup.
I guess the take home message would be to re-discover who you are in the absence of your ex-partner. Focus on ways that you can grow as a person, and do things that bring you—just you—happiness.
Psychologists generally define forgiveness as a conscious, deliberate decision to release feelings of resentment or vengeance toward a person or group who has harmed you, regardless of whether they actually deserve your forgiveness. … Forgiveness does not mean forgetting, nor does it mean condoning or excusing offenses.
With that explanation you should know where i am headed, forgiveness is for our own growth and happiness. When we hold on to hurt, pain, resentment, and anger it harms us far more than it harms the offender. Forgiveness frees us to live in the present. … Forgiveness allows us to move on without anger or contempt or seeking revenge and who doesn’t want that?
It is never easy to forgive when you are going through those initial stages of pain, the shock, it is actually over, the anger, I really hate him/her right now or I cannot believe I did this and hurt the very person I claim to love, however even the thought of forgiveness and what it does is a good place to start.
The end of a romantic relationship is hard, but it is hardly the end of the world. Caring for yourself is one way to get your life back on track and to get yourself feeling happy and whole again. All the best to you!