Several months have passed since your relationship ended, but you still haven’t moved on. You hate how your heart sinks each time you bump into the ex or see them with someone else in a photo on Facebook.
You know you need to stop feeling this way, but you don’t know how to go about doing it. These five steps could be all you need to heal your heart, and move on after a painful breakup.
- Find A Creative Outlet
Why do you think so many songs are about love and heartbreak? It’s because breakups are the best source of creative inspiration. Yue Xu, dating expert and the founder of Singlefied.com, says, “Find a creative outlet to let out your feelings—drawing, painting, writing, singing, dancing. Creatively dealing with your sadness will inspire you to learn more about yourself. You may even discover some talents you never knew you had.”
- Take Your Time
According to psychologist and author Dr Ramani Durvasula, it takes different people a different amount of time to move on. She explains, “It takes about six weeks to start feeling normal again, and within six months, most people are ready to move forward and live life fully without grief. But you need to give yourself time. We, as a society, like to rush the mourning and grieving so as to deny the hurt. That’s not a good practice.”
- Invest In Yourself
Leslie Harmon, a community writer for Gray Malin, believes that after a breakup, you need to get to know yourself again, not be defined by another person. Do things you like to do, go places you want to go (you finally don’t have to consult with someone else!). At some point, it’s going to feel good to treat yourself really well. Go on that vacation. Eat a gallon of ice cream. However, these are indulgences that have been proven to make you feel worse, not better. The best way to treat yourself is to invest in a way to better yourself. Maybe it’s learning a new language, or joining a spinning class. Maybe it’s looking for a better job. Invest yourself, and groom yourself to be even better than you are.
- Close The Ex Files
Rip the Band-Aid off, without much thought. Delete him or her from your life, whether that means deleting their contact info, un-friending them on Facebook, or simply blocking their number. Xu says, “Even when a relationship ends on amicable terms, and there may be hope for reconciliation, two people still need time away from each other in order to evaluate their time without this person.” The important part is that this is not a process. This is an action—an immediate action. Close the ex files in one swoop.
- Turn To Your Support Network
When you’re ready, reach out for support. You have friends and family who care about you. You may not need their advice, but you may just need them to listen. Or need them to motivate you to do something. Aniesa M Schneberger, a licensed mental health counselor says, “Being in touch with your feelings and thoughts will help you heal quicker. But a breakup needs to be talked about. Hiding what happened will bring guilt and shame. Find an empathetic ear to express your side of the story.”