Healing after Heartbreak
A few people over the past several weeks have contacted me seeking advice on how best to navigate and heal from a recent breakup. I shared many tips based on my own experience in order to provide encouragement and comfort but I wanted to dedicate a post to these tips for everyone else who’s navigating the healing process after heartbreak. Although my tips are personal to my own experience and healing journey, I do believe that some may find comfort in knowing that it is in fact possible to heal from heartbreak but more importantly, to find love again.
Inhale, exhale, deep breaths, let's go.
When one of my past relationships finally ended, I honestly felt as if I’d journeyed through the pits of emotional hell but had finally made it through to the other side. I'd experienced so much drama and emotional turmoil from that relationship that being free from it was honestly….scary. I didn’t really know what it felt like to NOT argue with someone day in and day out, to NOT question every goddamn thing that came out of someone’s mouth, to NOT question my worth on a regular basis, or to NOT cry every other. Having once been the norm, life without these things was strange, foreign and legitimately uncomfortable.
Tip #1: Finding comfort in being alone.
When a relationship ends, one of the hardest parts to deal with isn’t just the loss of the other person but learning how to be comfortable by yourself. For me, when I left my last relationship, it meant that he had to move out, leaving me entirely alone in my apartment. Being alone made me terribly uneasy because after spending so much time overlooking some of my much deeper personal issues, I finally had to sit with myself and confront them.
Although it was initially scary and uncomfortable, being alone was absolutely necessary because I was finally able to nourish some aspects of my life that needed some real care. I was able to sift through some of the low-vibrational sh*t that was keeping me down, giving birth to strategies I'd developed to eliminate those things from my physical and mental realms. For example, I had to face the fact that I had dangerously low self-esteem which manifested in seeking validation and approval from external entities, namely men. I also had to confront real feelings of inferiority as I hadn’t quite figured out my career path and was constantly comparing myself to my peers who were seemingly more settled in their respective careers. I also had to sit with and unpack why I hated being alone so much and realized that I hated it because I didn't know how to do it. Beyond just being a coined term on social media, I didn't actually know what "self-care" really looked like in practice.
Once I spent more time refilling my own cup and nourishing my spiritual well-being, I came to the realization that seeking validation from others and making constant comparisons to others was toxic af.
I came to understand that my journey was uniquely mine and that the pace at which I accomplished things in life was specific to my own experience.
Once I reveled in that, I became more comfortable taking my time in learning how to love myself again; prioritizing my mental peace over everything.
LIFE HACK: We really have to remember that prioritizing our mental, spiritual and physical health is not a selfish act; rather, a radical act of self-love. Only until we are truly comfortable being alone with ourselves, will we ever understand and appreciate how to be completely and proudly authentic in the company of another person.
Tip #2: The inconvenient truths.
When we’re going through heartbreak, we tend to spend so much time missing our ex, wondering where things had gone wrong, and reminiscing on the good memories we once shared. What I found to be really helpful, however, was spending time unpacking some of the inconvenient truths about the relationship which ultimately helped me justify my decision to leave.
For example, I’d always referred to one of my ex’s as my “best friend”. By labeling him as such, I granted him privileges that I’d given my other close friends, failing to acknowledge that he at no point ever earned them. When I sat with that for a second , I realized, “Bree, your best friends would never do to you some of the sh*t that this man has done.” At a minimum, anyone who I consider a best friend is someone who is both honest and trustworthy and once I realized that I wasn’t getting even that from my relationship, I realized that I’d been blind to and tolerant of certain behaviors that were not in fact becoming of a “best friend” but rather a very narcissistic individual. I’d tricked myself into believing that this was the best it could get because I had settled. I’d created the allusion of the relationship I’d always wanted but if I had been honest with myself while “in it”, I would have told myself “baby Bree, now you know you deserve better. You’re worth more than this. Real love doesn’t feel like this.”
Tip #3: Equally difficult as the other two tips but just as necessary to your healing process is your ability to truly, deeply and genuinely believe that love can be achieved again.
Yall. Let me say this intentionally and unapologetically: Love, often times healthier & even more spiritually grounding, can be achieved after heartbreak! I recently shared a long post on IG about this but I want to spend another second addressing its significance.
Excerpt from my IG post:
Despite however many years I'd invested in my past relationship, if I hadn't walked away, I may not have ever experienced the insurmountable joy that I have now. I may not have a family. I may not be a homeowner. Hell...I may not even be an entrepreneur. What I've learned is that even though it's scary affff, walking away from toxic relationships, in whatever form they may be, is one of the toughest yet bravest decisions one can make in life.
Often times (and I’m definitely guilty of this as well), we have a tendency to overlook how much toxicity existed in a particular relationship, focusing more energy on the amount of time invested in the person/relationship. Even in the relationship, we have a tendency to stay longer than we should because we convince ourselves that somehow if we left, if we walked away, if we searched for love elsewhere, we would have “wasted” years in this previous relationship. That is low-vibrational behavior that often prevents us from experiencing the very love we know we deserve if we’re brave enough to walk away. No experience is an accident and no person comes into your life without a lesson to be learned.
So instead of harboring on years that you feel were “wasted”, consider all of the lessons learned from that relationship. Those are the very lessons and experiences that will situate you and prepare you for the love you were divinely intended to have. Albeit scary, I walked away from my past relationship recognizing that whatever was to come next would be a love filled with insurmountable joy because I’d learned certain lessons, took accountability for certain behaviors I knew I wouldn’t repeat and invested in myself in a way that would manifest the same level of investment from my future partner.
And that's precisely what I got.
I hope that you’ve found comfort from my 3 tips and I’m sending the deepest, most genuine vibrations of love, encouragement and empowerment to those who are navigating heartbreak. There’s no time limit to healing so give yourself time to get through the dark days. Give yourself time to cry, to mourn and to grieve the loss that was your former relationship. Take this time to also get to know yourself better, to love up on yourself more, to believe in the beautiful reality that love can be found again and that you will manifest the love of your wildest dreams. It worked for me!