When a relationship has reached its breaking point, no matter which end we’re on, it’s only natural to feel anxious. What’s harmful is to let that anxiety take over your life. It’s easy to panic, press rewind, and flood your mind with all the good and the bad memories. You struggle to reassure yourself that the end of this relationship is not the end of the world.
While some relationships end abruptly, most end as gradually as they began. We long to go back to the beginning and undo any damage. We torment ourselves over what we could have done differently, but the truth is regret is a wasted emotion. All we can do is learn and grow. Just because things could have been different doesn’t mean they would have been better.
“I had all and then most of you, some and now none of you, take me back to the night we met.” - Lord Huron
Love Is a Choice
There are countless reasons why your relationship may have ended, but the important thing to recognize is that love can not exist without free will. A loving relationship is not held together by force or manipulation. A loving relationship is held together by choice; the moment your partner stops choosing you is the moment when your only choice is to let them go.
Love Is a Gift
If you have to convince someone of your worth or plead with them to appreciate what they have with you, that isn’t love. Authentic love is freely given. As sad as breakups can be, the blessing is knowing that letting go of the wrong person opens you up for the right one. Loosen the reigns and relax; in the right relationship you won’t have to work so hard to motivate someone to stay.
A loving relationship is not held together by force or manipulation.
Remember You’re in Charge of Yourself
When you feel powerless over the status of your relationship, consider that your partner - past, present or future - is not the ruler of your emotions. You may not have control over the relationship, or your partner for that matter, but you absolutely have control over your own feelings and your own happiness.
If breaking up has you spun out and insecure, remember that your worth isn’t found in the validation or commitment of someone else. Be mindful, because irrational insecurities can become catastrophic, and if not dealt with, they can destroy even the most promising relationships in the future.
You may not have control over the relationship, or your partner for that matter, but you absolutely have control over your own feelings and your own happiness.
Learn from the Breakup
The end of your relationship may bring your own unhealthy behaviors to your attention. This is the time to work on those. Hurt people hurt people. So we have to make a conscious effort not to perpetuate harmful patterns. Let’s face it, thanks to our culture today, we’ve already learned bad habits that contribute to dating failure.
For example, we are a generation that shows disinterest by ghosting and swiping left. We spend our lives behind screens, excited by the implicit affirmation of texts, likes, and story views. We focus on capturing (and recapturing) our every activity, rather than being present in the moment and engaging with the ones we’re with. We treat our partners casually because we rely on the illusion that there are endless options or more perfect people out there. We develop distractions rather than priorities. We care more about the optics of our relationship status than we do our actual relationship status; after all, labels and commitment terrify us.
We treat our partners casually because we believe there are endless options or more perfect people out there.
Conquer Your Fears
Most relationship problems stem from our tendencies to operate out of fear rather than love. We take all of our previous mistakes and our fears, bury them under the highlight reel of our lives, and make ourselves about as transparent as our Insta profiles. We carry on like we have it all together, knowing perfectly well that our behavior is unhealthy.
Studies show that 46% of Americans are lonely. Zoom in on millennials and that number is almost doubled - 80% are said to feel alone. However, many of our social practices exacerbate this situation. We share an inability to effectively communicate, reveal our true selves, or find lasting, fulfilling relationships, creating cycles of ambiguous, short-lived connections.
Most relationship problems stem from our tendencies to operate out of fear rather than love.
We Need To Forgive
While our exes may be responsible for hurting us (or vice versa), pointing fingers is hardly a remedy for a broken heart. Anger, resentment, hostility, or any number of negative emotions can boil over after a breakup. Holding on to those feelings can only hurt you, they’ll never heal you. Remember, hurt people hurt people.
It isn’t just that we should forgive, we have to. Forgiveness doesn’t condone someone’s actions or make any trauma less significant. Forgiveness allows us to process our wounds, accept the pain inflicted upon us, and decide how we are going to positively move forward.
Forgiveness allows us to process our wounds, accept the pain inflicted upon us, and decide how we are going to positively move forward.
If we don’t forgive, face our fears, or deal with past mistakes, we continue to carry those problems throughout our lives. Like baggage, they don’t feel so heavy at first, but after a while, the weight becomes too tiresome to bear. Rather than unload and move on, many of us choose to give up, anchored by our apathy. If we could just free ourselves of the burden, we would be able to walk, if not run, in the right direction.
Forgiving others, and more importantly ourselves, is not only healing but rewarding. The heavy lifting of removing what weighs us down is strength training for our character. It isn’t easy to forgive, but it is the most rewarding personal exercise. Plus, it gets easier with practice. The value in forgiveness is immeasurable; its impact has the power to change our lives. It is 100% guaranteed to make you happier, healthier, and a much more beautiful, loving person.
The heavy lifting of removing what weighs us down is strength training for our character.
When a relationship is over, it’s easy to dwell on the past. But when we live in the past, we are denying ourselves not only the present but also the future. Breakups require a recovery period, and it’s okay to be sad. But it’s imperative to heal sooner rather than later; let it hurt, and then let it go. Heartache can hit in overwhelming waves, but the right partner will bring your heart peace.