How to finally letting go of the pain from breakups.

Thursday, November 27, 2014 Dinda Naya 0 Comments

“Getting over a painful experience is much like crossing monkey bars. You have to let go at some point in order to move forward.” ~C. S. Lewis

It's been awhile since your past relationship. It might be a day, a month, a year, or even more than that. And yet you're still troubled by the pain the past left. The whole thing is dragging too long, but why can't you just get over it? Why does every time you think about the past, you feel ruined again?

Perhaps something remains unsaid for you, even now. Perhaps that’s why your feelings remain so strong. 

Perhaps part of you holds out hope you could get back together again. Perhaps you need to admit that and let go of it.

Maybe your thoughts telling you the fear of not meeting anyone else like your ex. You won't, but eventually you will meet someone. Just that they will be different.

Loving someone doesn't mean you should be with them. It also doesn't mean that they are good for you. It's a reality that you need to face. Keep in mind that you can have a happy life, even with a great sorrow in your heart.

Physically, your body is just fine but your mind is playing trick with you. It keeps telling you to think that "things should have been different" and those thoughts will conflicts with what actually happened, so it open up your wounds again. That causes the turmoil. Give in.

Admit: "This is how it should have been, and this is exactly how it it."

Facing the truth is difficult, and life may feel more painful. But at the end of the day, you would feel more peace because the conflict with it is reduced.

It's about making the decision. There was a woman who was still heartbroken eighteen months after breaking up with her boyfriend. The woman was explaining to her friend, in detail, how she felt—a curdle of sadness, anger, hurt—and how she was convinced she would never be able to move on.

Her friend stopped her, saying, “And now tell me, how you will feel when you are over him?”

The woman described how free she would feel, how relieved that it was behind her, how keen she would be to get on with life, how confident and unafraid she would be if she happened to meet her ex.

Her friend suggested, “So why don’t you just feel that now?”

The woman’s life transformed instantly.

For her, it was about making a decision to move on. If it has been a while since your relationship ended, perhaps this choice is also available to you. Play with the idea.

It has been long enough now. People may tell you it’s time you got over your relationship. Like with bereavement, you don’t ever have to “get over” it, but you may need to more forcibly move yourself on, and if you’re stuck, to take a new approach to doing so.

Hurtful experiences, ones that emotionally and logistically reset our lives, leave us with two choices: open up more or close down.

The braver choice—the one that will allow new things to enter your life—is to open up.

Give yourself a new and different opportunity to leave it behind.

If you've been holding onto an old relationship, now is the perfect time to let go. Here’s how you can start moving on:

1. Practice releasing regrets.

After the breakups, it's tempting to dwell on what you did wrong and what you could have done differently. This might seem productive, like you can somehow change things by rehashing it.

You can't.

It will cause you to suffer. You will start to revisiting the past in your head. Starts to pull yourself into the present. Focus on the good things in your current situation: the friends who are there for you and the lessons you've learned that will help you with future relationships.

2. Work on forgiving yourself.

You might think you made the biggest mistake of your life, and if only you didn't do it you wouldn't be in pain right now. Don’t go down that road—there’s nothing good down there!

Instead, keep reminding yourself that you are human. You’re entitled to make mistakes; everyone does. And you will learn from them and use those lessons to improve your life.
Also, keep in mind: if you want to feel love again in the future, the first step is to prepare yourself to give and receive it. You can only do that if you feel love toward yourself; and that means forgiving yourself.

3. Don’t think about any time as lost.

If you've been clinging to the past for a while and now feel you've missed out, shift the focus to everything you've gained. Maybe you've built great friendships or made great progress in your career.
When you focus on the positive, it’s easier to move on because you’ll feel empowered and not victimized (by your ex, by yourself, or by time.) Whatever happened in the past, it prepared you for now—and now is full of opportunities for growth, peace, and happiness.

4. Remember the bad as well as the good.

Brain scientists suggest nearly 20 percent of us suffer from “complicated grief”—a persistent sense of longing for someone we lost with romanticized memories of the relationship. Scientists also suggest this is a biological occurrence, that the longing can have an addictive quality to it, actually rooted in our brain chemistry.

As a result, we tend to remember everything with reverie, as if it was all sunshine and roses. If your ex broke up with you, it may be even more tempting to imagine she or he was perfect and you weren’t.  In all reality, you both have strengths and weaknesses and you both made mistakes.
Remember them now. It’s easier to let go of a human than a hero.

5. Reconnect with who you are outside a relationship.

You lived a fulfilling single life before you got into the past relationship. You were strong, satisfied, and happy, at least on the whole.

Remember that person now. Reconnect with any people or interests that may have received less attention while you were attached.

The strong, happy, passionate person you were attracted your ex. That person will get you through this loss and attract someone equally amazing in the future when the time is right. Not a sad, depressed, guilt-ridden person clutching to what once was. If you can’t remember who you are, get to know yourself now. What do you love about life?

6. Create separation.

Hope can be a terrible thing if it keeps you stuck in the past. It’s not easy to end all contact when you feel attached to someone. Breaking off the relationship might feel like ruining your chances at knowing love again. You can start by stop messaging your ex, stop stalking them on social medias, stop revisiting the album of picture you created together. Stop counting how many failed anniversaries you've been through.

You will know love again. You won’t spend the rest of your life alone. In one way or another, you will meet all kinds of people and create all kinds of possibilities for relationships—if you forgive yourself, let go, and open yourself up, that is.

7. Let yourself feel.

Losing a relationship can feel like a mini-death, complete with a grieving process.

First, you’re shocked and in denial. You don’t believe it’s over and you hold out hope
Next, you feel hurt and guilty. You should have done things differently. If you did you wouldn't be in this pain.
Then, you feel angry and maybe even start bargaining. It would be different if you gave it a second go. You wouldn’t be so insecure, defensive, or demanding.  
Then you might feel depressed and lonely as it hits you how much you've lost.

Eventually, you start accepting what happened and shift your focus from the past to the future.

8. Remember the benefits of moving on.

When you let go, you give yourself peace.
Everything about holding on is torturous. You regret, you feel ashamed and guilty, you rehash, you obsess—it’s all an exercise in suffering. The only way to feel peace is to quiet the thoughts that threaten it.

Letting go opens you up to new possibilities.

When you’re holding onto something, you’re less open to giving and receiving anything else.

Imagine if you had your arms wrapped around a huge bucket of water, you wouldn't be able to give anything other than that bucket, or grab anything else that came your way. You might even struggle breathing because you’re clutching something so all-encompassing with so much effort.

You have to give to receive. Give love to get love, share joy to feel joy. It’s only possible if you’re open and receptive.

9. Recognize and replace fearful thoughts.

When you’re holding onto a relationship, it’s usually more about attachment than love. Love wants for the other person’s happiness. Fear wants to hold onto whatever appears to make you happy so you don’t have to feel the alternative.

Replace those thoughts with: All pain passes eventually. It will be easier if I help them pass by being mindful. I can’t always control what happens to me, but I can control how I respond to it.

10. Embrace impermanence.

Nothing in life lasts forever. Every experience and relationship eventually runs its course.

The best way to embrace impermanence is to translate it into action. Treat each day as a life unto itself. Appreciate the people in front of you as if it were their last day on earth. Find little things to gain in every moment instead of dwelling on what you lost.

When I feel like clinging to experiences and people, I remind myself the unknown can be a curse or an adventure. It’s up to me whether or not I’m strong and positive enough to see it as the latter.

“The amount of happiness that you have depends on the amount of freedom you have in your heart.” ~Thich Nhat Hanh