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Broken heart : 5 tips to overcome in life
It is never easy to heal a broken heart. You have separated from the person you love. The person with whom you have spent months or even years. Maybe the person you have lived with, or even a person you have had children with. It can be a real kick in the teeth. A veritable shock to the system to suddenly find yourself alone and feeling like the world is caving in on us. And that constant sharp pain in your chest? Surely your heart is trying to tear its way out of your body.
You’re heartbroken, and the pain is greater than anything you have ever experienced. You find it difficult to concentrate on anything but this great gaping hole in your chest. And you can’t eat, you can’t sleep, you can’t even force yourself to think about anything else. Finally, you just want the pain to end, but how? Now that you’ve lost the person who meant so much to you. How can that pain ever go away? Without him or her in your life, how can you ever fill that great empty void in your heart where they used to be? How can you overcome a broken heart?
Avoid breaking your broken heart
In other words, avoid things that are sure to renew the pain. Sure, the pain is inside you. It is a constant presence in your head and heart that you cannot escape. Still, there are certain things that you shouldn’t do if you want to avoid inflicting more pain on yourself. Many people strongly believe that avoiding your problems never works, that you have to face up to them. While that may be true, right now, while your break up is still so recent and your wounds so fresh and raw, the best thing that you can do is avoid anything that will remind you of your ex and therefore remind you of how he/she broke your heart. Avoid them for the time being. You can face up to them later when you’ve given your heart the chance to heal a little.
Avoid your ex
This does not mean that if you see them in the street or in a shop you put your nose in the air and ignore their mere presence. It means that you don’t deliberately try to see him or her. You don’t wait for them outside their house or visit them at their workplace or ‘just happen’ to run into them in their favorite coffee shop. Keep your distance from your ex for a little while, seeing him or her will only be like rubbing salt in the wound. And if you actually do happen to have a chance run in with your ex, nod, wave, or say hello politely and distantly, and be on your way.
Cut off contact
Severing all ties with your ex for a little while may be a good idea to help you heal. Obviously this will not be easy if you share children with your ex or work with them, but it is difficult to overcome a broken heart if the person responsible for it is watching your every move. Don’t call your ex. Don’t text or email or send a message by carrier pigeon. Cut off all contact, at least for a little while. It may also be a good idea to block him/her and his/her friends on social media. It will not help your heartbreak if you see his/her latest smiling happy pictures on Instagram, or change of relationship status on Facebook, or his/her latest post that clearly shows he/she is doing just fine without you.
For that matter, taking a break from some of your mutual friends may not be a bad idea either. If you have other people to turn to during this difficult time and it doesn’t cause you any more hurt to do so, avoid seeing any friends you have in common with your ex for a week or two. You don’t want them bringing you information about your ex and adding fuel to the fire of your heartbreak.
Avoid memorable places
Taking a stroll through the park where you and your ex first laid eyes on each other and walking by the water fountain where you had your first kiss is never a good idea. It brings to the forefront of your mind memories that were once happy. But because of your recent break up are now painful to think about. You don’t need the extra hurt. Avoid the places where you experienced the milestones of your relationship. Finally, avoid your ex’s favourite places, and avoid the places where you and your ex liked to go together.
Avoid painful reminders
Think of all those happy pictures of you and your ex placed carefully around your apartment. Think of the watch she gave you for your birthday. Or the jacket he lent you when you were cold and that you never gave back. You feel that pang in your chest? That’s a pang of longing, longing to go back to your ex. To go back to those times, memories that are now painful. Take all those photographs, all those objects that remind you of your ex. Put them in a box and stash them somewhere out of reach until you’re ready to deal with it all. Out of sight, out of mind.
Rely on other people
You cannot and you should not go through your break up and deal with your subsequent heartbreak alone. You have an entire support system of friends and family at your disposal to help you. Use it. If you try to do this alone, you’ll end up bottling up all your emotions inside, a sure recipe for disaster.
Talk it out
Talk to your close friends and family. Rely on them. You can’t talk to your ex. So express to them all the pent up emotions you’re feeling. The hurt at the break up, the disappointment at the end of the relationship. Discuss where you think it went wrong. Call your ex all the terrible names under the sun. Anything you need to do to make yourself feel better. Your friends and family are there to help you feel better, not to defend your ex. So don’t feel bad about unloading on them. They are there to support you. And they know that if they were the one going through a break up, you would be there for them (and maybe you already have been in the past).
Spend time with loved ones
Even after you’ve talked it over until you’re blue in the face, spend time with your friends and family. You don’t have to be talking about your ex or your feelings, just let your family and friends distract you. Visit them to avoid going home to an empty apartment, spend time with them so you don’t feel alone. Allow their presence in your life to take your mind off the lack of your ex’s presence.
Seek professional help
If after weeks or months you still can’t seem to get over your break up or overcome your broken heart, and all your friends and family are getting irritated by your being miserable all the time, it may be a good idea to talk to a professional. Nowadays, the stigma of talking to a therapist is almost non-existent and you will surely find that having been through it all countless times, they will know of a dozen different ways to help you. Think about talking to one of our coaches and you may find what they have to say invaluable. There is no shame in seeking professional help if you truly believe it could help.
If you’re suffering from a heartbreak and don’t know how to overcome it, one of the best things that you can possibly do is distract yourself; distract yourself from memories of your ex and distract yourself from the pain, anger or frustration you feel over the break up.
Why is it important to distract yourself from your broken heart? Simply because it is much better than the alternative. If you come home to an empty house every night, eat dinner and watch television alone, you’re going to miss your ex fiercely, you’re going to feel sorry for yourself, you’re going to drown in a pool of misery. No, it is much better to get out of the house as much as possible, spend time with other people, and do things. Your heartache will not be as painful if you occupy your mind and time and don’t give yourself the chance to think about it.
Taking on different activities is a great way of taking your mind off of your heartbreak, particularly if it is something that takes up a lot of time and energy. For example, spend your evenings taking a cooking class and learn how to make the perfect profiterole, join the community theatre and spend your evenings singing, dancing and acting, or take up a sport. This is also a great way of releasing any leftover frustrations. Put all your energy into your activity and you won’t have any left to think about you ex when you get home.
Take on new projects
Maybe you’ve always wanted to write a book? Perhaps you’ve always imagined yourself as a beekeeper? Maybe you’ve always wanted to try skydiving but couldn’t because your ex was afraid of heights. Think of something that you’ve always wanted to do and never could. Whether you never had the time or you had set it aside because it wasn’t something your ex wanted to do, this is your opportunity. Even if it’s something to do with your job, taking on new projects is a great way of keeping your mind occupied elsewhere and distracting you from your broken heart.
Set yourself goals and achieve them. They can be to do with your activities, your new projects or any other aspect of your life. Just make sure they’re attainable. Learn how to make a casserole, manage to keep your balance on a surfboard for more than three seconds, do twenty sit-ups every day for a week. Setting and achieving goals, however small they are, will not only distract you. But can also take the feeling of failure that contributes to your broken heart and turn it into a sense of achievement, as well as encouraging you to start to look to the future, to leave your break up behind you and begin to heal your poor heart.
Purge your emotions
Here’s the worst part. If you really want to overcome your broken heart, instead of just shoving it into a cupboard in the darkest and most distant corner of your mind, throwing things on top of it and for all intents and purposes burying it and pretending it’s not there, you actually have to open the cupboard and deal with your emotions, as awful as that may be.
List their faults
If days or weeks after your break up you still feel as brokenhearted as ever and can’t help feeling like you weren’t good enough for your ex, stop that right now. Stop idolising your ex. Tip over that pedestal you put him/her on and knock him/her back down to earth with the rest of us mere humans. Make a list of all his/her faults, everything that every annoyed or angered you about him/her. Maybe this will help you to begin to see that he/she doesn’t deserve your heart. It could help you realise that your relationship wasn’t perfect and maybe there’s something better out there for you. Maybe it will help you to understand that while your break up still hurts, your heartache is slowly starting to heal.
Write a letter
Maybe you still wish you could tell your ex how he/she made you feel, how he/she broke your heart. You might like to tell him/her a few home truths. Maybe you’d like to call him/her a few names; or maybe your emotions have dulled enough now that you’re able to remember the good parts of your relationship; maybe you’re at a point where you can simply thank your ex for the good times the two of you shared.
Whatever it is that you want to say or whatever feelings you want to express to your ex, now is the time. Do it with a pen and paper, not online or by text. Write a letter to your ex saying whatever it is that you still feel the need to say… and burn the letter. This is how you’re going to purge your emotions so that your broken heart can begin to heal.
Not a writer?
Maybe you’re not a writer. Maybe you don’t think writing a letter and burning it will work for you. No problem, there are other ways of purging your emotions. Take it out on a punching bag. Speak out loud and say everything that you have left to say about the break up to the punching bag while delivering a few well placed punches to release your anger. Or take it out on your guitar. Write the most melancholy song the world has ever heard about your poor broken heart.
Warning: Only ever say these things directly to your ex if you really feel you need to, not to be vengeful and vindictive, but in order to let yourself heal and move on, and keep in mind that seeing him/her again might not do you any good, in fact it may only serve to reopen old wounds and bring back your heartache with a vengeance.
Restore confidence in yourself
All too often break ups leave you with a broken heart and shatter your confidence in yourself, so in order to overcome your heartbreak you have to find a way back to the confident, self-assured person that you were before. You may think this is easier said than done but just follow a few simple steps and you’ll get there in no time.
Look after yourself
Take some time to look out for number one, to take care of your own body and mind. Go for long walks, take baths, spend hours immersed in a good book; these are just some of the things you can do to help you unwind, relax your mind and which will leave you feeling like you’ve got a new lease of life. You should try visualising all the negativity of your break up and your heartache flowing out of your body and feel yourself becoming more like the person you were before.
In addition to relaxing your mind, it’s a good idea to get a new haircut or buy some new clothes, to alter some small aspect of your appearance. If you look good, you’re going to feel good. Even the smallest change for the better in your appearance can work wonders for your self-confidence.
Having a positive outlook on life can make you seem like a completely different person, one who doesn’t let anyone or anything get them down and always manages to see the bright side. Create a motto or mantra for yourself. It can be as simple as “I am great” or “I can achieve anything”. Repeat this mantra to yourself several times a day, whenever you feel small or like you’re not important. Let it be the first thing you think in the morning when you wake up and your last thought before you go to sleep at night. Tell it to yourself over and over and eventually you will come to believe it, to believe in yourself.
See other people
You may not feel ready to start dating again just yet and that’s okay. You were in a relationship for a long time. Obviously it’s going to take you a while to adjust to being single without throwing another person into the mix. However this is the point: you were in a serious relationship for a long time, but that’s over now.
Relax and let yourself have some fun with a new person or new people. You’re not likely to end up marrying the next person that you go on a date with. Use this time to get used to dating again, hone your skills of seduction and just enjoy yourself. Dating other people will make you feel attractive and desired, and this will greatly improve your self confidence. And before you know it you won’t feel that pain in your chest every time you hear your ex’s name, you won’t feel sad when their favourite song comes on the radio; before you know it your broken heart will have put itself back together.
Keep yourself busy
An unexpected break up can be one of the most devastating things you ever experience in life. It can feel like your ex has pulled your heart right out of your body and stomped all over it. But the most important thing you need to remember when you’re trying to overcome a broken heart is that time heals all wounds. Time will heal your broken heart. In the meantime avoid seeing and speaking to your ex or going to places that will hurt you. Instead, rely on your friends and family to get you through this.
Take up activities and projects that will distract you and exhaust you so much that you don’t think about your heartache. Then, and only when you’re ready, begin to deal with your emotions. Purge yourself of them and try to gain back the confidence that this heartbreak has stolen from you. Your heart is yours, not your ex’s. They are not the one who can put it back together, you are.Antoine Peytavin, fondateur du site jerecuperemonex.com