Breakups. We’ve all had them. We all hate them. Everywhere we look, another couple has broken up. Take this week for instance: Eva Longoria shocked many fans by filing for divorce from Tony Parker, her NBA hubby of three years, which in turn lead him to file as well. According to People, Eva allegedly found hundreds of text messages between Tony and Erin Barry, the wife of Brent Barry, Tony’s former teammate. Ouch! We ‘regular’ folk always think celebs lead these fairytale lives, but this only proves they aren’t even immune. Breakup are such a hot topic that Mario made it his title track which became an instant hit last year. After watching numerous friends attempt to overcome their pain recently, I had a chance to assess the different approaches of recovery. Some were good, some bad, and some just…well, plain crazy!
I’m no expert, but I do have common sense…on most days! So, I’ve put together 5 ‘simple’ tips to help ease the pain, just a bit at least, and help you start living again (take note Eva):
1. Make a Clean Break
This is crucial. The healing can’t begin if you’re still communicating with your ex. This also alerts them that you’re embracing your new-found independence. You’re in desperate need of time: time to reflect, time to think, time to heal, time let go and time to move on. It’s okay to eventually become friends (friends, not lovers!), but that’s not the healthiest alternative initially. *Becoming friends should only be contingent on how your ex treated you before, during and after the breakup. Remember, everyone isn’t deserving of your friendship*
2. Go Ahead, Cry (Big Girls & Boys DO Cry)
Allowing yourself to grieve the death of your relationship is okay. It’s actually healthy for you. When the person you were the closest to is eventually gone, it’s hard…very hard. If you don’t give yourself enough time to decompress and get through the heartbreak the right way initially, you could be dealing with the pain years from now.
3. Jot It All Down
When going through a tough time, writing down your thoughts, feelings, fears and unanswered questions can be extremely therapeutic. It’s a major stress reliever. Buy a journal and jot down any and everything that’s on your mind. You may not know what to say at first, but it will eventually come to you.
Many times during a relationship, we lose touch with old friends and even some family members sometimes. It’s usually never intentional, but it happens. Pick up the phone and call those old college buddies or cousins you haven’t seen or talked to in awhile. Set up brunches/lunches, dinners, play dates, movie nights, game nights, a getaway trip or just meet for drinks to get yourself out of the house. Breaking bread and having a blast with pals can help any situation and lighten the load.
5. Wipe Away Those Tears, It’s Time For Something New
It’s now time to choose a new hobby! What is your passion? What one thing have you always been curious to try but never did? What author have you wanted to follow? Hobbies can be lifesavers. They allow us to re-focus our energy on something other than what our primary stresses are, while re-discovering who we are as individuals. Please note, hobbies DON’T include our jobs. They must be stress-free, fun and interesting, such as joining the local sports team, finding a cooking class, running, scrapbooking, traveling, learning a new dance, etc. Meet new people, give your mind a break and have some fun all while finding yourself again.
After doing these 5 things for a few weeks (or months), you should be in a better place – ‘should’ being the operative word. Try not to harp on the past too much and allow yourself to move on. Don’t worry, it takes time!
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