Breakups and the Gift of Loss

Updated: Jun 14, 2019

Breathe in. It’s all going to be ok.

There’s nothing to be scared of, breakups hurt at the start, but it does get better. If you’re going through a breakup, this is happening to you for a reason, this situation wasn’t serving you, it wasn’t bringing out the best version of you, and this is your blessing and calling to level up.

There is always a gift to be found in loss. Every ending is a new beginning.

Breakups are a fantastic opportunity to grow, soul search, to gain a new level of confidence and inner stability. The first stage of a breakup is....... committing to the break up. What is to commit? It’s to put our energy towards something. If we’re not committed to breaking up and we're still attached to the relationship, we don’t have a direction and a focus for our energy to take action, we’re in limbo. This is a hard step, and it can take time, but the sooner we commit to accepting the break up, the sooner we can focus our energy in a direction, start our healing process and move forward.

One of the biggest causes of our suffering is the thought “get me out of this suffering, I’m not supposed to be feeling this way, I don’t want to be feeling this way” - it’s resistance. To heal is to feel. To feel is to embrace our emotions instead of resisting them. Feel the hurt, feel the emptiness or the betrayal or the shock. Because we cannot heal if we avoid feeling. It might be worth remembering that we all employ tactics to avoid uncomfortable feelings, like loss. These tactics include alcohol, drugs, rebound sex with other exes or hook-ups, even punishing exercise – get to know your own avoidance strategies and recognise them so you can contain them.

Breaking up does not mean you have to hate your ex in order to move on. You’re allowed to love them. You are capable of loving someone and not being with them. You’re not weak for loving them, you’re not holding yourself back by loving them. But you are holding yourself back if your focus is constantly on them and what you don’t have. We need to stop distracting ourselves from ourselves and turn our attention from them, onto us. If we’re constantly wondering “do they still love me” “have they forgotten me,” switch the focus to “do I still love me?” “Have I forgotten me?” This is your chance to reflect on your relationship patterns, question the beliefs that are behind your hurt feelings and heal any co-dependency issues.

Remember: Life is not just about romantic relationships.

There is so much more to life than that. If you get all your meaning and validation from romantic relationships, then you need to work on creating a meaningful and fulfilling life outside of relationships and learn to love yourself so you’re not afraid to be alone with yourself. Use the pain to launch yourself. Channel it into a passion project, strengthen your spiritual practice or use it to work on yourself. When life gives you lemons, make lemonade. Become an alchemist and brainstorm ways to use this pain as fuel for motivation.

A lot of people will tell you to write lists about what you didn’t like in your ex, or what qualities you want to manifest in a new partner… and that can be a helpful strategy. But, that’s still keeping our focus external.

We want to hone it in, it’s about us.

Instead of writing a list about someone else, what qualities do you want to manifest in yourself, who is the person you’d like to become? Focus on YOU, learning more about YOU.

If you loved your ex because they made you feel valuable, focus on giving that to yourself, (the feeling of value,) so you don’t have that internal void that might cause you to lower your standards next time.

Another thing you don’t have to do is to fill your social diary and use this time to strengthen friendships. You don’t need to chase people. Yes, we want our friends around us and our friends will want to be there for us, but we don’t want to use people. Telling yourself that you’re supposed to be socialising, in attempts to avoid your loneliness is not self-loving, it’s self-abandoning. When we do things motivated by avoidance, or FOMO, because we think that’s what we should do, like we need to maintain friendships even though we’re not feeling it, we are choosing to reinforce unhealthy belief systems that says we’ll lose out if we prioritise ourselves.

Definitely do not look for rebounds. Using someone to numb your pain is only going to prolong your pain. Just like eating, we need sufficient break time between meals to break down and digest our food, and let it pass through our system. If we get into the habit of eating and eating and eating and not giving ourselves proper time to digest, we overwhelm our system, compromise our health and our energy is zapped. If we jump into a new relationship, without processing the last, we’re just going to repeat the same patterns (and we'll end up with digestive issues).

Do create a break up journal. This is your emotional messy place, it’s an outlet for the negatives, all the reasons why you don’t want to be with this person, all the ways they are not ok for you, any pain that needs to be expressed, you can write down motivational quotes if you like, even write down the feelings that come up if you relapse. Because usually when we relapse but we want the relationship to be over, we can feel it, there’s an inner emptiness or sense of defeat, and I want you to amplify that feeling and give it a voice, let it speak. Record everything. Refer back to this journal when you need to, in vulnerable moments. Because we can oscillate between missing the person and longing for them, to feeling relief and excited about our single status.

Remember go easy on yourself. When you address your underlying fears around being alone or letting someone go, you will completely surprise and impress yourself with your strength. This is your time to do you, date yourself, get to know yourself, love yourself. Your own company is enough.

Ask yourself: what is this breakup teaching me? If there was a lesson or a gift or a reason for this, what would it be?

#breakups #loss #grief #breakingup

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