Getting over a breakup is an awful reality of life. When a relationship ends, you’re swept up in a whirlwind of emotions, feeling lost, confused, angry, hurt, and completely heartbroken. When you’re in it, it feels like the pain will never end, but it will get better.
Moving on from a relationship requires time to grieve, a little tough love, and a whole lot of TLC. Here is our true advice.
1. DON’T SUFFER ALONE
It’s natural to want to be left alone after a breakup, but isolating yourself can put you on the fast track to an even deeper depression. Asking for support from friends and family isn’t a weakness. When the people you love know you’re hurting, they’ll rally around you and do their best to lift your spirits. If your relationship consumed most of your time, use this as an opportunity to reconnect with friends and family.
Talking it through with your BFFs will help you process your emotions and remind you that you’re still very much loved. Say yes to every invite they send you. While being social might be the last thing your broken heart wants to do, it can give you a reason to leave your pity party at home. A change of scenery and getting out of your comfort zone is always a good thing, but particularly when getting over a breakup.
2. PURGE YOUR SOCIAL MEDIA
The urge to cyber-stalk your ex after a breakup is strong, but do your best to resist. Constantly checking their Facebook page or obsessively scrolling through Instagram isn’t healthy (plus, it might lead you down the not-so-helpful break up sex route…).
Seeing their face automatically appear all over your feed doesn’t help in getting over a breakup either, so consider hitting that “unfriend” or “unfollow” button. You may also want to unfriend, unfollow, or mute any mutual friends as well. A digital detox can work wonders on your broken heart.
3. WRITE IT OUT
Journaling can be a very therapeutic exercise and help you process your emotions, especially when getting over a breakup. Writing all of your thoughts and feelings out on paper is very cathartic and will feel like such a release. If the words aren’t flowing, try doing some self-reflection and make a list of all the things you learned from the relationship, good and bad.
It can be natural to idealize your ex and your relationship, slipping into thoughts like “we were so perfect together” or “we were so happy, I don’t understand what happened.” Instead, try writing down all the ways your ex and your relationship weren’t right for you. Look back at your list any time you find yourself with those idealistic thoughts, and be grateful that you have moved past it.
You can also go a step further and write an open and honest letter to your ex. Don’t actually send it, but write it as if you were. Include all the things you never said, things you wish you said, things you’re thankful for, and the things that disappointed you. Use it as an opportunity to say goodbye and find closure.
4. MOVE THAT BODY
It might be hard to peel yourself off the couch and put down that cliché tub of ice cream, but exercising is a great way to start healing your broken heart and initiate the process of getting over a breakup. It triggers the release of endorphins, which boost your mood while reducing your body’s response to pain.
Getting into the routine of a regular workout has been proven to reduce stress, drive away feelings of anxiety and depression, improve self-esteem, and promote better sleep. A good workout will build your confidence and take your mind off the breakup. Whether you go for a run, hit the gym, take a walk, hike, or break out your yoga mat for a flow session, any physical activity will be good for your physical and mental health.
5. PRIORITIZE SELF-CARE
Sometimes in a relationship, you spend more time taking care of your partner than yourself. So this is a time to get your priorities straight and start taking care of you.
Building a better relationship with yourself through self-care will allow you to be the best version of yourself.
6. GIVE IT TIME
When you’re going through a breakup, it can feel like the heartache will never end, but trust that it will, in time. The saying “time heals all wounds” goes for a wounded heart as well.
You may be skeptical, but there have even been studies that prove it, including one study that estimates three months for the heartbreak blues to go away for most people. After interviewing 155 undergrads who had been through a recent breakup, researchers found that 71-percent could start to see their failed relationship in a positive light after just 11 weeks. So give yourself time to grieve. Always remember that your feelings are valid and that processing them is part of the journey.
Getting over a breakup is challenging because they signify the end with a person that we cared about deeply. This can be especially difficult when the other person instigated the breakup, but a few months of healing is to be expected in all scenarios. Be kind to yourself and remember that this too shall pass!