The end of a relationship is never easy, especially if you’ve been together for years. This is true even if you know the relationship was going sour, or was unhealthy to begin with. The truth is that we are human, and our emotions aren’t always rational or logical. They just are. How can you effectively deal with the emotional pain that can follow in the wake of a breakup?
1. Know that this too shall pass.
No feeling lasts forever. It is in the nature of emotions to come and go – even the most intense of them. No matter how bad you feel, remember that you will survive this difficult time and will feel better eventually. This won’t necessarily lower the intensity of your feelings, but it will help you endure them a little better if you can keep a long-term perspective. Whether the breakup was a good thing or a bad thing, whether it was your idea or not, ultimately you will be able to move on, as have countless other people in the same situation.
2. Don’t pretend the breakup is no big deal.
Acknowledging your feelings is an important part of getting through them. Pretending you’re not deeply upset when in fact you are is a recipe for prolonged emotional distress. Be real with your emotions, even if they don’t necessarily make sense to you. Like we said, emotions aren’t always rational or logical. You may know that the relationship was not good for you – you may even have been the one to initiate the breakup – and yet you can still feel terrible about it. Don’t try to convince yourself not to be sad – let yourself feel whatever you’re feeling and trust that you’ll eventually come out the other side.
3. Hang out with friends.
It’s normal to want to isolate yourself when you’re down after a breakup, and taking some time for space and reflection can be helpful. However, spending all your time wallowing in your despair can perpetuate your negative feelings and cause you to go over and over your depressing thoughts. While it’s important to allow yourself to be sad, it’s also important to balance that with the rest of your life. Make sure to connect with the people that matter to you in your life. Whether or not you spend time talking about your situation, seeing friends can help pick you up, just remembering that there are still people who care about you. And having a little fun on the side will help keep your spirits up, too.
4. Don’t Facebook-stalk!
In today’s age of constant connection and ubiquitous social media, it is easy and tempting to keep tabs on what your ex is up to. Don’t do it! Remaining tied to your former partner in this way is virtually guaranteed to drag out your recovery process. You’ll be seeing them moving forward with their life, looking happy (as most everyone does on social media), and potentially finding a new partner (obviously much too soon for your comfort). You’ll just be weighing yourself down with more sadness about the situation, and you will gain nothing but frustration and pain. As enticing as it might be to keep an eye on your ex’s goings-on, you will do yourself a big favor if you stay away.
Ultimately there is no shortcut for how to get over a breakup. The only tried and true method is time. How much time it will take varies from person to person; the above tips can help you shorten the time it takes for you to get out of your misery and get back on your feet emotionally. If you need some extra help dealing with the pain of a breakup, get in touch with us today to meet with a counselor who can be there to help you through.
Learn more about our counseling services here.