When a relationship has reached its’ breaking point, no matter which receiving end we are 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 bad memories. You struggle to reassure yourself that the end of this relationship is not the end of the world. Breakups aren’t easy, especially when you’re the one being dumped.
“I had all and then most of you, some and now none of you, take me back to the night we met.” Lord Huron
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.
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.
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.
Authentic love is freely given
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 just to motivate someone to stay.
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, nor your partner for that matter, but you absolutely have control of 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, irrational insecurities can become catastrophic and if not dealt with, can destroy even the most promising relationships in the future.
The most vital question to ask yourself when dating is, does your partner make you better?
The end of your relationship may have you recognizing unhealthy behaviors of your own; this is the time you should work on that. 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 been set up for failure while dating and generally have bad habits.
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.
Most relationship problems stem from our tendencies to operate through fear rather than love. We take all of our previous mistakes and the fears we have, 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.
Learning to deal with our emotions
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 are catalysts to this dilemma. We share an inability to effectively communicate, reveal our true selves or find lasting fulfilling relationships; creating cycles of ambiguous, short-lived connections.
While our exes may be responsible for hurting us, or vice versa, pointing fingers or playing the blame game 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 take those problems and carry them with us throughout our lives. Like baggage, they don’t feel so heavy initially, but after a while, the weight becomes too tiresome to bare. Rather than unload and move on, many of us choose to give up, cemented in 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 intuitively 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.
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 the future. Breakups require a recovery period, and it’s ok to be sad. But it’s imperative to heal sooner rather than later, let it hurt but then let it go. Heartache can hit in overwhelming waves, but the right partner will bring your heart peace. Learn to walk away from anyone that doesn’t inspire you to be better than you’ve ever thought you could be.