One of the toughest experiences that we can have in life is something we call heartbreak. We call it that because the heart is the part of us that we often use to symbolise what we use to love. The heart beats blood throughout our bodies and is what keeps us alive and therefore if our heart was broken we would almost certainly die. When someone leaves you it can be easy to feel like you just want to die so the metaphor does not seem so far away from the reality. What are the things we must remember when we experience heartbreak? How can we get through it?
First, notice that I am using the term get ‘through’ heartbreak rather than get ‘over’ it. Now I am not suggesting that it is not possible for many to get over the experience. But I prefer get ‘through’ because it suggests that we fully experience heartbreak rather than avoiding it. The key is to accept that you will face a number of days/weeks/months where you will struggle with the pain of heartbreak but that there will be a day not so far away when things won’t feel as bad. The not as bad days will soon become more frequent than the really tough days until finally, time will make things better. Accepting that it is okay to feel the pain is an important initial step.
It is also useful to understand that going through such pain can serve to make you stronger and tougher. You determine how such an experience will shape you as a person. If you choose to make the pain mean something positive then it can. If you choose to see it as something that makes you more loving, more powerful and more mature in the romantic arena then it can.
There are three types of heartbreak associated with someone breaking up with you:
- Someone breaking up with you because of you or something you did.
- Someone breaking up with you and not giving you any reason.
- Someone breaking up with you because of circumstances.
Perhaps the worst of these three is not getting any reason. Sometimes people engage in a practice known as ‘ghosting’ where in a friendship or relationship everything seems fine until one party just decides to leave for good. The other person is left shocked, unaware of why or what they did wrong. The reality is that it is not about what you did or who you are most of the time. It is because of who they are. You cannot always change what goes on in another person’s head. Sometimes they will go and you won’t know why and you will never find out. You have to accept that you might never find out but even if you do, in most cases it is not worth knowing.
Seeing a break up as an opportunity to be your best self is a smart move. Break ups can lead to a height in motivation. Exercise and healthy eating are productive actions that are immensely useful and known to lead to positive emotional and physical benefits for people. Setting strong independent goals is also a smart move. Basically, the key is to focus your mind on something else you can build so that you start taking time occupying your mind on better things. Furthermore, the attention you put on this means that you will be building a non-romantic part of your life into something you have some semblance of control over.
The other side of heartbreak is the realisation that there will be others and there will be amazing experiences. It is the realisation that there is nothing wrong with ‘you’; it is just the brain chemistry in some people’s heads. Everything is going to be okay and so are you. For love is not something we should demand when we are scared it is leaving. Love is something that we earn by giving it. It is not a sign of our worth. Rather it is an example of our blessings in life.
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