At 21 years old I’ve officially experienced my first heart break and let me tell you, it’s shit. The hardest thing I have ever had to do is walk away from someone whilst still loving them, it’s the worst feeling in the world but now I know that it was the right decision for both of us. It just wasn’t supposed to be and that’s for a number of reasons but I don’t regret a single moment I spent with him. I learned so much about who I am whilst in a relationship and now that I’m single and that’s OK and for now I get to be selfish and live my life a quarter mile at a time doing exactly what I want to do.
However, I knew exactly how it feels to fight those post breakup feelings of anxiety, grief and anger. It’s actually so sad, my friend told me to treat it like a death rather than a break-up and it was probably the best bit of advice I had been given. Whether you’ve just broken up or you’re a few months down the line it can still be challenging but there are things to do to make the process easier.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not a break-up expert by no means. In fact I was and often continue to be a total mess, you aren’t alone in that one. I took gradual steps after my break-up to process and grieve my loss and it took a while but eventually I figured myself out.
Step 1: Change your relationship status, remove the photos, give back their things. Leaving these things around will only make the process harder, believe me I know. Once you do it you feel so much better, like weight has been lifted off your shoulders. Having a clear out also just makes you feel more refreshed, think of it as changing the your summer clothes to your winter clothes. Out with the old and in with the new.
Step 2: Take it slow. Stop rushing things, you wont wake up the next day and feel wonderful. It does take time, so give yourself time to process the situation. I don’t mean spend all day, every day dwelling on what could have been and feeling sad about it. I mean give yourself a few minutes to think about it, get up, shake it off and distract yourself. It’s okay to think about it and be sad but you need to do other things to do slowly adjust. I read all 7 Harry Potter books (best decision I ever made), got a summer job to distract myself and started eating healthy and exercising.
Step 3: Put yourself first. Was there something you wanted to do before you broke up that you wouldn’t have done whilst you were together? Now is your opportunity to do it. I’ve focused my time to lose weight and, study my masters degree, work and make new friends. I’m eating healthier and less, the weight is slowly coming off me and it’s increasing my self-esteem massively, I feel so much better every single time I see those numbers on the scale fall. I continue to embrace my new life as a masters student, occasionally go off plan through drinking wine or eating a little unhealthy whilst I make new friends and learn how to juggle my life.
Step 4: Go out, be sociable and meet new people. You have to get yourself back out there and especially into the world of dating (that dreaded world). My friends told me that you have to kiss a lot of frogs for you find your prince, so you go kiss those frogs (when you’re good and ready of course). Being sociable will really help to keep your mind off things and along the way you may find yourself with a new partner but most importantly, new friends and founding confidence.
Step 5: Learn to accept the change, embrace your new founding freedom and remember that you probably weren’t the reason for the break-up and things don’t always pan out the way you planned things. Your dream wedding with the guy of your dreams will happen, just not at this moment. Yeah it’s shit because you planned your baby names, what dog you wanted and the type of house you wanted to live in. Those things will come, just with someone else eventually. You’re still worthy of love and attention, don’t you forget that.
Remember, your break-up doesn’t define who you are. You can be anybody you want to be, so go out and be her/him. You now have the chance to do more of what makes you happy with the privileged of not worrying about someone else.
With love, Beth x