SELF-CARE AFTER A BREAKUP
After a break-up, you may find yourself being constantly reminded of your former partner. These thoughts can trigger a range of emotions from anger or sadness to guilt or relief. Leaving the relationship may seem like the best or worst mistake you made. You may find yourself being consumed by these thoughts and wanting a moment of peace. They may infringe on your daily activities, resulting in ‘sticky’ thoughts that just won’t stop replaying in your head.
We’re here to tell you that all these feelings are normal!
Break-ups can be incredibly difficult to navigate through, regardless of what end you were on and how old you are – they don’t necessarily get ‘easier with time’. This is a situation in which practicing self-care becomes as important as ever. And we’re here to help you through it.
Let’s start with why a relationship may end:
It just didn’t work out.
It is important to remember that most of the time, when a relationship ends, there’s usually no one to blame – it probably just didn’t work out.
A healthy relationship is one in which boundaries are respected. There is a mutual understanding of one another, and a peaceful balance. You work well together and uplift each other. If needs aren’t being met in a relationship, it’s difficult to work through them.
This doesn’t mean you should immediately pull the breaks though! It’s completely okay to want to work and build on a relationship, however, when it’s clear that it’s not honoring your wants and needs, it’s just as okay to want to step away.
It was a negative cycle.
On-again-off-again or abusive relationships can take a tremendous toll on our mental health.
When we are stuck in a cycle that negatively impacts us, it can often be difficult to break out of it. Be proud of yourself for taking that step and prioritizing your safety and health.
Whatever you are feeling right now is normal. Remind yourself of your strength and reach out to trusted loved ones for help. Now is the time to only focus on you, your wants and your needs.
So how do you navigate a break-up?
Talk it out.
Express what you are feeling. You may find yourself going through a range of quickly changing emotions – let them out. Whether it’s telling yourself out loud or speaking to someone you trust – verbalizing your emotions can help ‘release’ them and eventually help you move forward.
If you’re finding it difficult to cope with certain emotions, or don’t know who to talk to – consider seeking out a professional therapist, ideally one that specializes in relationships.
Remember, wanting to seek help does not mean there is something wrong with you or something that needs to be ‘fixed’. Asking for help is completely okay – it shows you’re prioritizing yourself and practicing self-care.
Work on your relationship with yourself.
Now is the time to focus on you and your needs. After a relationship, you may find that your wants and needs have been neglected. It’s normal to sometimes forget or lose ourselves in relationships, and that’s okay.
Self-care can be as simple as taking a nice, long shower or a moment to breathe. Make time for the things that you like and bring you pleasure. Seek out activities that excite you and feel good. The more relaxing, the better!
Surround yourself with loved ones.
Our support system can often be the source of great strength. Even if you’re not quite ready to talk yet, sometimes just sitting with someone you love can help.
Allow your loved ones to help you and care for you.
Clear your space.
Rearranging your living space can really help declutter your mind. It may be a good decision to clear away anything that reminds you of your former partner, and only keep the things that resonate with you. If you have any impending household chores to do – now may be the perfect time!
How you choose to navigate a break-up is entirely up to you. It’s important to remember that:
Finding a relationship that works for you can take time.
Just because you haven’t found the ‘right’ person for you yet, doesn’t mean you won’t in the future. A break-up definitely does not mean that you’ve failed or that there’s something wrong with you. It’s completely natural to feel sad over separating from someone you cared for and it’s just as normal to feel relieved and ‘free’ from someone who wasn’t good for you.
Use this time to prioritize yourself and your health. Taking the time out to focus on things you like and bring you joy is not selfish. It’s self-love.