Once in a while, you meet someone who turns your world upside down. It seems like the sole purpose this person has come in your life is to make you question everything you believed could be possible in life. You are madly in love. Your mind is mush and you cannot think straight. You cannot remember what you ate this morning, or if you ate at all, or what day of the week it is. You just know exactly how long it will be until you are going to see your love again.
Then fast forward, and the relationship blows up in your face and you are left looking at all the pieces of yourself that have scattered, wondering what went wrong and how the hell you are going to put them back together. This is when the real work begins.
While breakups are hard to navigate, they help illuminate our pain points and areas that could benefit from attention and growth. They show you where you have been abandoning yourself. The process of splitting apart hurts . It disappoints and exhausts. It requires that you take the little energy you have left and pivot in an entirely different direction. All of this as you are hit with an emotional tsunami, and can hardly focus on having one straight thought.
Focus and clarity are essential to living a purpose filled life, but near impossible to access during and soon after a breakup. Here are a few things that have worked for me:
- Get space: Care for yourself by doing less and resting more. Go low or no contact. Give yourself the time to think things over and reconnect with yourself. Having the space will allow you to take steps to return to wholeness and rediscovery yourself.
- Connect with your essence: Care for yourself by celebrating your uniqueness. This practice can be very effective at helping you get in touch with your identity that likely got bruised, if not entirely shattered, after the breakup.
- Connect with your deepest feelings: Care for yourself by feeling your feelings. Your brain does not care about your happiness. It only cares about keeping you safe. This is why instead of embracing painful emotions so that they can communicate, metabolise and depart. We develop a host of coping mechanisms to avoid it. Food, sex, television, shopping, alcohol all serve as distractions for running from your pain. The more you run away the more it will persist.
- Connect with your needs. Care for yourself by honouring what you need. Many of us compromise too much in relationships. It is easy to mute our needs and desires to not make waves. Some of us may even become less authentic to make our partner like us more. So ask yourself:
-Who am I?
-What makes me happy?
-What makes me whole?
-What do I need?
5. Practice sharing your vulnerability: Care for yourself by chasing authenticity over perfection. Your identity is no longer bound with your partner. At this time you are totally free to be you. So get curious about who you are.
While you are busy making gains, you can also take time to treat yourself right. Develop a self care routine, hit the gym, go to the spa, or take a solo trip. Whatever makes you feel good. Focus on your own needs and what makes you happy for a while. Because, after all, you have no one to answer to but yourself.
Breakups suck but they are also an opportunity. Love is not supposed to hurt! Relationships are supposed to be reciprocal. There needs to be harmony and balance between give and take. When you are fulfilled you will be happier and there will be more of you to share.