Video: Author, speaker and Power and Success Ministries founder Ellard Thomas partners with Dwayne Deloatch, founder of Deloatch Inc., to help empower those dealing with a painful breakup.
Breaking up sucks, doesn’t it? No one ever believes that they’d be forced to leave someone they love, or be left by someone they love. Unfortunately, it happens. Such is life.
As you’re bombarded by a flood of emotions, you may be asking the question, “how to get over a breakup with someone you love?” Well, dealing with a breakup is more of a process, and not a true answer.
In this article, we’ll address the emotions you’re experiencing as well as give you the best tips for moving forward and finding happiness.
Going from We, Back to Just Me
Whether the relationship lasted for four weeks or four years and beyond, breakups have the power to leave us feeling downtrodden, heartbroken, lost and even physically ill. While there’s no magic pill or formula to rid ourselves of the emotional distress we feel, having healthy coping mechanisms in place is critical to getting over your ex and dealing with the challenges of the breakup itself.
As you already know by now, ending a relationship weighs heavily on the mind and body. One study found that breakups often cloud our sense of self—and the more serious or invested you were with your ex, the more of an identity crises you’re likely to encounter.
Marriage therapist and author of “Chatting or Cheating” Sheri Meyers stated, “The first thing you need to anticipate, no matter where you were in the process, is that there is a grieving period. There is a sense of abandonment, there is a sense of terror about the future, there is disappointment…There’s a process of going from we back to me.”
While you’re trying to figure out how to deal with this breakup, it’s important that you treat yourself well during this period—whether you’re the person who initiated the breakup or the person who’s left with the pieces of a broken heart. While time truly heals all emotional wounds, you can help speed up the process of getting over a breakup fast by taking control over your health and well-being.
Top 7 Tips to Dealing with a Breakup
To help you jumpstart the healing process so you can start rediscovering your happiness, we’ve put together seven simple, expert-approved strategies for dealing with a break up and coping with breakup stress.
Step 1: Return to your spiritual foundation
Unbeknownst to many people, the breakup of your relationship was orchestrated by God. Many times we find ourselves getting into relationships that were never meant for the purpose He called us for. Take Samson for example.
In Judges 14:1-4, Samson found himself with a desire for a woman who wasn’t approved by God. Yet, he continued to pursue her and even ends up marrying her. Unfortunately, this young lady he pursued so fervently ended up being with another man—leaving Samson distraught and heartbroken.
Although I used Samson as an example, this isn't a gender-specific issue, but a callout on the decisions we tend to make for the people to whom we shouldn't have given our hearts.
When we experience the type of breakup you’re experiencing right now, it’s time to go back to God for healing, reconciliation and direction. Ask for the lesson and prepare yourself for a brighter future. Don’t take the relationship as a mistake, but rather an opportunity for God to redirect your path.
Step 2: Address Your Hurt
Many times many people choose to suppress their hurt and unpleasant feelings because it’s a natural impulse. This is an error.
There are so many adverse and negative emotions that are involved in a breakup, such as, anger, sadness, loneliness, feelings of rejection and uncertainty about the imminent future that it could cause you to entertain destructive and unhealthy behaviors. Think about the behaviors you are entertaining right now?
Whereas some people seek to numb their pain by indulging in casual sex, drinking, isolation and other unhealthy means, many have found freedom in writing and talking about their situations.
In the early stages of a breakup, it’s okay to feel hurt, abandoned, rejected, betrayed, or misled. Yet, as the days go on, it’s time to start healing and reflecting. Grab a journal and start writing down how you feel. Reflect on what you learned. Additionally, speak to a counselor. If you’re looking to get over a breakup fast, then this step is critical.
Step 3: Take Care of Your Body
It’s interesting how breakups can have a direct impact on how we treat ourselves. Across the globe, millions of people do one of two things: go on a “breakup diet” or binge eat. The mentality behind these behaviors is to “get back at our ex” for what they did to us. News flash! We’re only hurting ourselves; not them.
Rather than go to either of these extremes, such as restricting calories or gobbling your life away, strive to keep your body healthy. Eat nourishing whole foods that are high in fiber and protein. Boosting your energy levels also boosts you. So, get away from the thought that something is wrong with you. Move away from taking your frustration out on yourself. You are better than that and deserve better.
Now, this doesn’t mean you’re not to work out after your breakup. It only means to keep a holistic balance of taking care of your body while coping with the stress of the breakup. Makes sense?
Step 4: Get Active
In step three we discussed taking care of your body. Step four would be like part two of step three.
A prescribed way to get over a breakup, is getting your endorphins pumping through cardio exercise. Going for a run or hopping on the elliptical can lower your stress levels, boost your mood, and improve cognitive functioning—which is a healthy distraction from your breakup. Even if getting active or working out is the last thing you want to do, this activity will help you to get out of your emotions and focusing on you again. Adding some weight training or HIIT can speed up your feel-good-mood.
Whatever you choose to do, make sure you’re not over doing it and you’re staying active.
Meyers says, “After a breakup, we tend to want to sit and cuddle and huddle and cry, and talk to our friends and feel bad about ourselves. So getting out and moving is really essential because it’s almost the opposite of what we feel like doing, which is shutting down and feeling sorry for ourselves.”
But be careful not to over-exercise: Like excessively dieting or over-eating, exercise can become a compulsive behavior. The goal of this step is to get active in a way that you enjoy and that doesn’t feel like self-punishment—whether it’s a morning jog in the park, a 30-minute workout in the gym, tennis, Zumba or yoga. Invite friends along to increase the fun!
Step 5: Remind Yourself of Your Greatness
When going through a breakup, it’s easy to focus on the negative contributions of the relationship that ended in demise. And as a result, we forget how great we really are and what great things that are happening in our lives.
“It’s so easy to see the loss as everything, and then it starts overwhelming the good in all of your life,” says Meyers.
As experienced by millions of people like yourself, painful breakups can cloud your thinking to the point it’s almost impossible to gaze beyond the immediate feelings of pain and loss. As a result, you may have trouble remembering how great you are as well as all the things that are going well in your life. Many people who’ve gotten over a break up fast practiced gratitude.
Gratitude is defined as, “the quality or feeling of being grateful or thankful.” Not to be a pain in the rear end here, but there are so many things for you to be thankful for. Your life, breath, friends, income, home, etc. are reasons to feel thankful. Yes, the relationship led to a painful break up, but it won’t break you. Focus on what’s positive while you’re navigating through your emotions and seeking to regain balance.
According to several studies, practicing gratitude can boost your well-being and brighten your overall outlook on life. And as Colossians 3:15 says, “Be ye thankful!”
Step 6: Do Things YOU Enjoy and Love
Following a bad breakup, it’s hard to get excited about the things you loved prior to the split up, but the only way to start enjoying life and yourself again is to force yourself to get out and do some of them anyway. Treat yourself to something that makes you feel good, but isn’t destructive in nature. Take care of yourself is essential to the healing process and doing things that make you laugh and smile can help you heal faster.
If you enjoyed going to the movies prior to your breakup, go catch a flick. If you liked dancing, go sway in the ambiance of good music and company. If you enjoyed playing sports, have at it (but be careful). As long as it makes you feel good, makes you smile or makes you laugh, go ahead and do it. You deserve it!
Step 7: Give Back
When dealing with a breakup, many people find peace by giving back or by performing other acts of kindness because it has been shown to improve well-being, reduce stress and relieve depression. “Giving back can be a powerful way to ‘re-channel the love,’ that was previously shared in the relationship.
Doing something as unselfishly as giving back or tending to other people’s needs gives you a sense of empowerment and helps you reopen the heart that the breakup had closed up.
As stated before, breaking up sucks—and being forced to deal with it has even a greater impact on us. While our previous mates may appear to be living life carefree, we’re left to rebuild ourselves from the rubble. Yet, by using the aforementioned seven steps, you can begin to deal with the breakup without resorting to destructive means.
In a relationship, no one does everything right. Each person has contributed to both the joy and demise of the relationship. And although the breakup has occurred, love and happiness isn’t over for you. Seek God for the strength to plow through this time and to heal your heart. Take away the lessons you learned and use them as a foundation to asking the questions you should’ve asked or taking the actions you should’ve taken. The greatest moments have yet to be lived and cherished by you. Thank your ex as you continue on to your best life.
Getting back your life is the utmost importance right now. In addition to the seven steps to dealing with a breakup, here are a few resources that will help you get over a breakup fast.
Ellard Thomas is the founder of Power and Success Ministries--an organization that's dedicated to helping people live a life of success and happiness as God intended. To ask questions or connect with me, you may do so here. Also, take a moment to join our online community so you can start getting empowerment messages sent directly to your inbox.