When relationships end – especially those that we thought were of the “forever” variety – the loss can feel like a death. For many it’s similar to giving up an addiction, new habits must be formed, routines must be shifted, and an alternate identity must be recognized.
The healing process can take a large amount of time, and unfortunately doesn’t always happen in a linear fashion. There are some days when moving on from the relationship seems easy, exciting even, but these days can be followed by the feeling that life will never quite be the same.
If you’re struggling to let go and move on to the next phase of your life, these tips can help you gain a little perspective.
#1 Separate Your Perception From Reality
When we are in the middle of a dysfunctional relationship, it’s usually extremely easy to spout of a list of reasons why things just aren’t working. Yet, once that dysfunctional relationship comes to a close, recognizing why it had to end suddenly becomes a massive challenge.
Be able to look at the situation for exactly what it is and avoid looking at it through rose colored glasses. This doesn’t mean discounting all of the good (which usually always exists to some extent), but instead seeing what is there – and what isn’t.
#2 Allow Yourself to Mourn
Your day to day life may be suffering from this seemingly uncontrollable outpouring of emotion, but it won’t last forever. So allow yourself to sit with the feelings that this break-up brings forth for you without trying to turn it off prematurely.
Part of the sadness during this time comes from the fact that you are mourning what never was, the future that you were never able to experience with your partner. Sometimes just recognizing it – putting a name to this particular brand of sadness – can help.
#3 Drop the Victim Mentality
It’s easy to take on the victim role after a break up, citing the things that your partner did or didn’t do, but this is only a temporary fix. In fact, it actually does the opposite of what you need during this time – it strips you of your power.
Chances are, you were hurt deeply in the break-up process. But healing from this hurt can take infinitely longer if you continue to see yourself as the victim. Victims don’t tend to move on to happy, healthy new relationships – or lives for that matter. Empowered self-confident people, on the other hand, do.
#4: Concentrate on You
Were there pieces of yourself that were neglected while you were in your relationship? Reconnect with who you are by doing the things that you love to do, or the things you didn’t know you loved to do. Pick up a hobby, reach out to old friends – anything that will temporarily bring you out of your head and into a better space.
Most importantly, be kind and nurturing to yourself.
#5: Let Go of the Outcome
Part of the reason why break-ups tend to hit us so hard is because, even if it was much earlier in the relationship, we expected a different outcome. We push and prod and expel all of our energy into hoping things will go the way we pictured in our minds, but sometimes there is a plan for us that is far greater than anything we could imagine for ourselves.
So stop investing all your energy in the outcome. Let it be. Let life flow the way it was intended to flow and you will lift a heavy weight off your shoulders.
Photo by Geomangio