Like the old song says, breaking up is hard to do. The aftermath of a dissolved relationship provokes a strong emotional response that can even have physical consequences.
You should treat yourself gently during this time and take care to nurture your emotional well-being. Here are five mental wellness tips for when a relationship ends.
Breaking up with someone can send you into a deep depression. Unfortunately, you might begin to stay away from previously enjoyable activities, especially if they remind you of your previous relationship. However, isolating yourself can lead to rumination as you mull over what went wrong and what you could have done differently. It’s one thing to analyze your behavior and quite another to punish yourself with “if onlys.” You can’t change the past.
Some of your previous social circle may have disappeared with your last relationship. In such cases, building a new social circle has many advantages. You can surround yourself with people who support your new lifestyle.
Did your ex hate death metal? Blast that stuff while banging the drums or air-jamming your way around the apartment that is now all yours. Take this time to rediscover any passions you may have let fall by the wayside while you were busy with your relationship.
This is an especially good tip if you’re one of the six million people who were in a relationship where someone was battling addiction. Whether you struggled with addiction yourself, your partner did, or you were codependently enabling each other, this break is a chance to recommit yourself to a healthier lifestyle and healthier hobbies.
Being single means there’s no one to freak out when you announce, “I’d like to try skydiving next weekend.” If there’s something you’ve longed to do but put off to take care of your loved one, now is the time to explore it.
For example, perhaps you dreamed of traveling the world, but your ex refused to get on a plane. Why not book that getaway to Bora Bora if you have the cash? A broken heart may hurt as much while chilling on a tropical beach with an umbrella drink — but shouldn’t you test that theory, just in case?
What would you do if your best friend came to you crying about a breakup? Guess what? Doctor, you are now your patient — treat yourself accordingly.
For example, if you’d propose a weekend-long spa day full of DIY treatments and relaxing practices, do it. You decide if you want to invite your BFF along for the fun or simply pamper yourself through your tears.
The same advice goes for what you shouldn’t do. You probably wouldn’t advise your best friend to jump back into a rebound relationship or while away their time at the bar. Treat yourself with as much kindness.
Your previous relationship might have made up much of your world. Breakups are a lot like moving. You can plan every detail, but it still takes time for all those minor adjustments. Instead of wondering why your keys aren’t in their usual location, you could burst into tears seeing your old partner’s now-empty hook.
Emotions carry a physical toll that lingers in the body. Rushing into another relationship or making sudden life changes while under this stress rarely ends well. Instead, give yourself time to readjust to your typical routine and think long and hard before quitting your job and launching a business or selling your home and taking up van life.
Ending a relationship is one of life’s most stressful events. You need to treat yourself gently during this time.
Follow the five mental wellness tips above for when a partnership ends. It takes time to heal, but you will recover and eventually learn to love again.
Join Panache Desai each weekday morning for support in reconnecting to the wellspring of calm and peace that lives within you and that has the power to counterbalance all of the fear, panic, and uncertainty that currently engulfs the world.
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