The exhilarating roller-coaster rush of falling in love can just as easily be replaced by the crash and burn heaviness of heartbreak. While you may be able to cope well with loves onrush of joy and fear, the deeply dark blanket of heartbreak may well send you cowering under your bed, unable to do even mundane tasks like getting up in the morning.
Prevent the ravages of heartbreak by setting off on a journey of nurture and self love.
HEARTBREAK TOOL KIT
- 1 loving family or group of friends who accept you no matter what and who will give you good hugs for your daily dose of oxytocin
- 1 good listener who is non-judgemental
- 4 new habits – start a hobby; rearrange your living space; a new route to work; change your exercise routine
- 2 new styles – update your hairstyle and buy at least two new items of clothing that make you feel great
- 10 minutes in meditation daily – accept and feel your emotions in a non-judgemental and nurturing process
- 1 nutrient-rich meal plan
- 2 important daily supplements
While a break up is devastating, try to re-frame your perception of it. Instead of seeing it as an end of something, look at it as the beginning of something new. If you need a little motivation, consider all the activities you would have liked to do, but never got around to because your ex took up that time, or was not that interested in those things.
Take a step back from the relationship and try to view it as an objective observer. Consider the negatives and positives and if you need to, write up a list of pros and cons, to get a balanced perspective in your head, and heart.
Love is complicated and we often place value on a person based on what we want, not always what we’re actually getting. Ask yourself if you truly loved the person or what they represented. It’s a tough question, but if you’re completely honest, it might be greatly revealing and help to lessen the hurt. For example, if you particularly miss the way your partner knew your every thought, consider whether what you actually love is the concept of being ‘known’. Then list all the people in your life who know you – even if it’s the sum of all of them who know you as much as your ex, you will realise that you are still ‘known’.
IT IS WHAT IT IS
Buddhism teaches a lot about the heart and brokenness, and in fact this type of teaching has been integrated into what’s now known as mindfulness. While much break-up advice centres on forgetting, the practise of mindfulness encourages you to actually feel the feelings. Don’t push your emotions aside, accept them, examine them and feel them. Set your mind towards a non-judgmental space and accept what is. Forget the ‘should haves’ and ‘if onlys’. Acceptance is a big step towards healing.
Revel in the rawness of your heart and emotions. The capacity to love, and therefore to be hurt by love, is marvellously human. It’s really what defines humanity. Rejoice in your ability to feel such emotion – it’s healthy and natural. By leaving your heart open, even in its raw state, you can find a shift in yourself – away from looking to be loved and towards looking to love. When you seek to love, you become more open to being loved. It’s a beautiful vulnerability that is intangibly attractive.
Get into the big picture. Instead of viewing this one event, the break-up, as life-defining, see it as an event along your pathway through life. There’s a flow in life and each day you go through moments of joy and heartbreak. By being aware of and fully exploring your emotions, you become more cognisant of who you are and how much love you actually generate.
THE ADDICT RULE
Think of yourself as a recovering addict. One of the steps in recovery is to change your habits and habitat. Try, as far as possible, to remove reminders of your ex from your life. Here are a few tips to help:
- Go to a different coffee shop for a while
- Take a different route to work
- Lose the ‘when we met’ or ‘our first date’ song from your playlist
- Wash every piece of linen in your house that may have a lingering smell of your adored
- Change the look of your home by updating your cushion colours and rearranging the furniture
- Change your look – do something radically different with your hair and update your wardrobe with a few choice items you know your ex wouldn’t like
Pain can become a habit, so while it’s totally natural