5 Post Break-Up Mistakes & how to avoid them
Many years ago in despair after a gut wrenching breakup, I typed in google “how to heal a broken heart.” I was at my wits end! The mind numbing pain in my heart wouldn’t stop. I was sobbing and barely able to function without thinking about my ex.
The advice for how to get through a breakup was all over the place. Some articles were telling me to pick up my heels and hit the club, others were telling me to find a rebound boyfriend and the worst of them all was trying to convince me to go back.
It took a lot of work and tears. Sadly, a few more break-ups but I finally did learn how to leverage the pain for my growth and to use it to pursue my purpose here on earth.
So why have your post break-up rituals not been working?
Let me guess …
- Your back in the dating game, while it is something to do on a Friday night your heart is still broken and you don’t know what to do.
- You’ve thrown yourself into a new gym routine, project at work or hobby that consumes all your time. However, when things are quiet your mind drifts back to your love lost.
- You have started seeing a therapist or counselor. Their advice is spot on but the pain you have still exist and they haven’t given you any actionable steps.
- You have talked to all your friends and family, and you are more confused than ever because everyone’s advice is all over the place.
Talented, beautiful and intelligent women like us do not have time to waste on methods that do not work. Therefore, I wanted to share with you some common mistakes we all make while trying to heal a broken heart.
Mistake #1 Getting into another relationship
Yes I know, nothing like getting over your old man with a new one - WRONG!
This is probably the worst situation you can find yourself in. Not only is the basis for your rebound relationship a comparison to your ex love, but you are putting completely unrealistic expectations on your new man to fill the gaping hole in your heart from your past relationship.
Yes, we would like to think that new love has the ability to heal our hearts completely; however, most of the time what ends up happening is we put a short term fix on a long term problem.
Eventually we end up battling the same insecurities, hurts and fears from our old relationship in our new rebound relationship.
I remember doing just that after a breakup. I jumped right into a relationship with a new guy. I was so eager to get over my ex that I was advancing my new relationship at warp speed. Not to mention, everything the new guy did wrong was twice as painful because I compared him to my ex. Needless to say that relationship ended quickly.
Instead of working on seeking a relationship with someone else, look to build the relationship with yourself.
Ok, I know it sounds cliche and corny, but hear me out …
Most of us are excellent at adapting to our beau, we know how to be a good “wife” right away. This is magical when you finally meet your intended, but devastating when it comes to breakups.
What happens when you adapt yourself into the wrong man’s help mate? You begin to think like him, acquire his tastes and become someone you were never intended to be.
This is why starting over again with yourself is so crucial. Do all that weird single stuff you were afraid to do around your ex. What shows do you like? What places do you truly like to visit? What is your favorite meal to cook? Relearning who you truly are is a joy and a privilege that most people don’t take the time to explore.
Mistake #2 Filling Up Your Calendar & Jumping into everything
I know you are giving me a blank stare, because this advice is breakup 101; but give me a chance to break this one down…
It is common advice for post-breakup survivors to be told that they need to throw themselves into work, school or whatever else to take their mind off their ex. “Go start a new hobby, begin training for a marathon or join the peace corp.”
However, taken to the extreme we use these activities and super busy calendars as a way of avoiding the pain of facing the heartbreak. We steamroll through the most crucial parts of the healing process without fully being present.
I know that breakups are hard, however, imagine reliving the pain from an old heartbreak years down the line because you never dealt with it in the first place. We put band aids on our wounds instead of allowing them to heal on their own. I find that most people use super busy calendars as a scapegoat for pain.
Instead of filling up your calendar right away, I encourage you to focus on one or two interests, activities or hobbies that you feel intuitively led to do. Allow yourself time to grieve. Chances are if you are used to filling up your calendar and becoming super busy you probably have old hurts (from a few boyfriends ago) you still need to deal with. Take the time, journal mediate or seek a counselor to work through the tough parts.
Mistake #3 Not breaking all contact with your Ex
Yes, this even applies if you’ve been best friends for eons and share the same play cousins. CUT. ALL.TIES.
I do understand if there are extenuating circumstances like you have children together or work together (I am saying a special prayer for you). But for most of us this is completely feasible.
Every time we send a text, like a picture or watch their snapchat stories it is a reminder of our lost love. It is impossible to heal a wound if you keep picking the scab. This also contributes to the endless hours of thinking about your ex. When they pop up in your news feed and you begin to wonder “What If?”
71% percent of people say they think about their ex too much. Narrowed to singles, the figure goes up to 81%. While 57% of singles say thinking about their ex prevents them from finding new love.
I know, I know it’s hard!
BUT you are a STRONG WARRIOR PRINCESS - You got this girl! Don’t just take my advice for it, see what Arianna Huffington said when she cut off all ties from her ex:
I adored him, and I had been with him for seven years. But, he didn’t want to have children, and I really wanted that. So, I left London, where we lived together, and I moved to New York. I didn’t trust myself enough to stay in London, because I knew I’d go back to him. And, now, everything that could have possibly ever happened to me actually happened. None of this would have happened to me if I stayed with him in London.
Or Beau Garrett’s (Girlfriends’ Guide to Divorce) story of picking up and cutting all ties:
My last big relationship was the biggest heartbreak, just because I thought it was the one. The horrible story is that I left in the middle of the night with all my stuff and never saw him again. But in a way it created the best year of my life, afterwards.
Cutting communication and getting on with your life is only going to help you heal faster. You’ll move on to live out your purpose and become even stronger than you were before.
Mistake #4 Neglecting yourself
Trust me, lots of takeout cartons, wine bottles and cookie boxes usually coincide with my post breakup rituals. It is natural to over indulge in the things that make us feel good when we are feeling like crap. However, all the sleepless nights, non-nutritious meals and cocktails eventually take it’s toll.
Taking care of your mental health vital too, it’s important to be aware of your thoughts and mental capacity. Its often hard to be present at work and complete daily tasks while going through a rough breakup. Our mind is elsewhere and our heart is grieving.
My recommendation is that you identify your triggers and stay far away from them.
I remember it was very hard for me after a recent breakup to watch regular adult shows because they all had love themes that sent me reeling; so I watched kids movies for a good 2 months straight.
I also paid special attention to make sure I was getting enough sleep and eating good food as to not throw my already off balance body into more of a crisis.
Take care of you, boo!
Mistake #5 Listening to the wrong people
Yes we love our friends, family and co-workers; and most of them have our best interest at heart.
However, loved ones also come with mixed messages, bad advice and a whole gamut of wrong information even though they are just trying to help.
The worst are those people who have no memory of what heartbreak even feels like saying things like “Oh he’s out there”, “There are plenty of fish in the sea”, or my favorite “Time heals all wounds”...
Please go eat a rock sandwich right now! That is not what I want to hear right now.
I know most loved ones are coming from a good place but sometimes the people in our lives just need to listen. We don’t need the cliche advice, mixed messages or their insecurities and fear projected on us; we simply need love and support.
I encourage you to create boundaries for what people speak into your life. You are already heartbroken. The last thing you need is to be on an emotional rollercoaster of the good, bad & ugly advice thrown your way.
I do understand you need an ear, so give your loved ones guidelines and boundaries for how they can be loving and supportive.
If you have no one, try seeking a therapist or counselor.
One thing that really helped me was my journal, I realized that most of the time I had the answers but they didn’t come out until I wrote them down. Most of us say things we don’t even agree with at times, but writing allows our truest self to speak and the pages of your journal will become filled with your best advice to yourself.
I know that BREAKUPS can be soul shattering but if you are reading this than you don’t have to allow it to get the best of you! I know because I have gone through many breakups myself and after each one I have leveraged them to reach goals. I have healed from food addictions, overcome obesity, finished ironman triathlons and become an entrepreneur all by leveraging my pain.
Don’t fret, I want to share my secrets in this this cool freebie titled 5 Post Breakup Routines- You Can Start Today! Learn from my mistakes and turn your pain into purpose.
My hope for you is that your heart mends in a healthy way, and you can rediscover the person you were always meant to be.
Keep shining girl!