I randomly stumbled on a Ted Talk by Guy Winch on ‘How to fix a broken heart’ and watching it inspired me to write a post on dealing with emotional pain and heartbreak.
To be honest, dealing with heartbreak and pain is never easy! If this is something you’re currently going through, I really want you to know that you’re NOT alone.
A lot of the time, we expect people who are dealing with heartbreak to automatically pick themselves up and get over the relationship immediately. We forget just how difficult it is to move on from something that became a huge part of our lives. There are so many different dynamics or layers to failed relationships that make them so difficult to get over – from the actual feeling of failure, to disappointment and sometimes betrayal. Dealing with all those emotions independently and collectively can be quite hard. Although it’s never fun to fail at anything, I think that in order to move forward you have to think of your failed relationship as a learning experience.
It’s important to give yourself time to learn from and grow through that painful experience. Carrying on as if nothing happened will not stop you from hurting. Bottling up the feelings or moving on to another relationship too quickly will not help at all. In fact, both reactions have actually proven to be more hurtful in the long run. It’s alright to take the time to figure out what went wrong and what you can do better in the future, but never throw a pity party for too long.
One of the worst things you can do when dealing with heartbreak is to blame yourself for what the other party might have done wrong. If you were cheated on, mistreated or betrayed, you have to understand that it is not a reflection of who you are as a person. It doesn’t mean you’re not good enough – it just means that THEY have to deal with their own insecurities, weaknesses or mistakes. It’s never about what you did or didn’t do, but about the “demons” they’re dealing with.
For example, if a person has been in and out of abusive relationships, it’s very likely that they would lack trust or have very little faith in their new partner irrespective of how good that partner might be. It is true that ‘hurt people, hurt people’ – you have to take the time to heal in order to avoid hurting someone else or being a victim to similar experiences in the future.
That being said, you must never change who you are because of what someone else did to you. A negative experience might make you a little more cautious but it shouldn’t change your outlook on life. Don’t become a pessimist just because someone broke your heart. Don’t stop believing that you are deserving of a loving and mutually respectful relationship. Stay focused on what you want and what you know you deserve!
Here are few other quick tips that might help now & in your future relationships:
- See yourself as a whole! Stop viewing your relationship with someone else as your identity. If for any reason your relationship ends, it might be difficult to build a new identity for yourself and that will make your heartbreak even more difficult to deal with.
- Protect your mind religiously! At the end of the day it is really all you have; a sick mind will weaken your entire body. Be resilient and strong. Experiences exist to shape us not break us, so learn from your mistakes.
- When a relationship ends, you will definitely have more free time – all the time spent with that person, will now have to be spent alone. Put that time to good use – channel your emotions into creating or doing something that will keep your mind occupied.
- Talk to people (you trust) about how you feel. Sometimes sharing can help you make sense of your feelings and put you out of the funk you’re in. Good friends (family) can remind you of how the relationship was bad for you – they can prevent you from idealizing an ex who wasn’t good for you.
- In a few years, that bad relationship or painful experience wouldn’t matter. If anything you would be glad it didn’t work out. So stop beating yourself up about it.
- Forgive and let go! Bless them on their journey and literally let them go. You don’t have to stay friends with someone who was bad to (for) you. Such friendships can affect your mental health, so protect the energy around you by letting them go.
I hope this encourages someone to stay strong!
PS: Watch the Ted Talk by Guy Winch here, you’ll definitely find it helpful.