The aftermath of a breakup is always devastating and people feel rightfully hopeless and helpless. Plenty of research papers has shown that the end of a relationship can lead to intrusive thoughts, insomnia, low self-esteem, and self-worth. Depression can occur in many cases, as well as lower immune responses of the body. The stress under which we find ourselves after a breakup is considerable and impacts our lives on so many levels. While science teaches us about the results of a bad breakup, it can also teach us how to get over one easier. Certain approaches and changes can turn our lives for the better after such events.
Don’t Fight It
Fighting your feelings can only make it worse. Instead, try to come to terms with the feelings that you experience. A breakup can come with a variety of negative feelings: anger, sadness, hopelessness, jealousy, confusion, fear etc. But if you try to suppress those, you only expand their lifespan. Grieving is normal, and it has a relatively limited “activity” interval. The best approach in your case is identifying those feelings and what exactly causes those and fully understanding and accepting those. This will decrease the time during which you experience grieving and will make you feel better at the end of the process, in fact. Coping in a healthy way with grieving will make you feel better. However, certain things might intensify the negative feelings that you experience. (1)
- You were not the one who decided to break up;
- Not anticipating the breakup;
- It was your first serious and committed relationship;
- Your ex-partner was your only real friend;
- You keep accidentally meeting your ex;
- You were feeling amazing in that particular relationship;
- Your ex-partner started to date somebody else right after your breakup;
- Believing that your ex-was your only solution in dating somebody.
Even if you experience these thoughts, they are manageable if you have the right strategy in mind. Some of the following pieces of advice seem to work best in coping with a bad breakup.
Make Self-Care a Priority
Self-care means that you have to ensure that your basic needs are met. When feeling depressed and anxious, this may seem difficult. Eating, sleeping showering, these are mandatory, even if you may feel like you don’t particularly want to. Search for various alternatives that might make these tasks for you. Sleeping might be hard during these times, but a herbal tea will definitely help your mind. Search for those meal courses that you enjoy and try to have small portions. Comfort food is there for a reason, after all! Start an exercising routine, if you want to better manage your sleep. Sleep deprivation will only make your suffering worse and the healing process lengthier. (2)
Give Up Thinking that You’ll Get Back Together
If you still use a people search tool to stalk your ex, give up this habit right now. This is by far the most toxic behavior that you might catch, as well as hoping for a reconciliation. As long as there are no serious reasons for your breakup or solid evidence that you two will get back together, give up this thought. The closure is necessary in this case, but you won’t achieve it by thinking that you will miraculously reconcile. Give up all sorts of connection with your ex. Don’t call, don’t search them on social media, don’t text or e-mail them just for a little contact with them! This resembles begging and sometimes, people take advantage of such vulnerabilities. You don’t want to put yourself in a similar position. And your precious time cannot be spent waiting for someone to come back to you. (3)
Avoid Unhealthy Coping Strategies
People have different ways of coping with loss. Some are beneficial and positive, others are completely unhealthy. Some may pick up exercising after a breakup to help them cope better with grief, others may pick up drinking or drug abuse. Other bad habits that you want to avoid are gambling, over-eating, self-harm. Instead of those, pick healthier approaches such as exercising, picking up a new hobby, attending cooking classes or simply meeting with your close friends. (4)
Identify Your Ex’s Bad Qualities
We all have good and bad parts. Well, to get over your ex faster and minimize the grief, try to make a list of your ex’s bad parts. It’s easy for us to be blinded by love when in a relationship, but now that the relationship is over, you will see more clearly all those things that weren’t that positive about your ex. Instead of focusing on all the good parts that you will miss about your ex, concentrate on the things you are glad that you escaped from.
Breakups might seem like the end of the world for many of us but remember that these are completely normal for dating and relationships.
Ana Miller is a creative writer. Her topics of interest and expertise range from psychology to all sorts of disciplines such as science and news.