There’s nothing more toxic than staying on in a relationship gone sour. When it’s over, you lose sleep, your skin gets ugly, your under-eye circles grow dark and worse, you lose your self-esteem. By now you may have asked yourself a hundred questions why and how did you end up losing each other when everything seemed to be going great. Fact is: people change, feelings change, and moping in your room will not bring things back to the way it was before. Finding fault will not help either. To unwind a relationship, it certainly had to be someone’s fault- his, yours, or a combination of both. While it’s healthy and normal to grieve over the loss of a relationship, you have to pick yourself up after. Don’t turn back. Move on. Here’s what will help to mend a broken heart:
- Discard, throw, hide or put away all pictures of your ex. Remember: out of sight, out of mind.
- Get rid of all items that he/she gave you during the relationship. Donate, throw or sell them. If you have accumulated enough, organize or join a yard sale and convert the remnants of your relationship into CASH.
- Avoid mushy and sad love songs for the next two or three weeks. The same advice goes for romantic movies. Laughter is still the best medicine; watch comedy films. If you like action movies, by all means, watch them, too. The idea is to distract yourself and to lift your spirits.
- Read good books. In your state of temporary and mild depression, self-help or inspirational books can change your outlook. Titles such as “Who Moved My Cheese” and “The Five People You Meet in Heaven” are good reads.
- Get a makeover. Chances are, when you were so engrossed with your problems or with your ex, you sacrificed yourself and gradually turned from beauty to the beast. Maybe that’s the reason why the relationship turned ugly– no pun intended. You don’t have to wear your broken heart on your sleeve. Work out. Get a new hairstyle. Try a new hair color. Get a facial, manicure and pedicure. Shave, if you’re a man. Try out new fashion styles. Improving yourself not only makes you feel better, but it also increases your chances of finding someone new and probably better than your ex.
- Work, work and work. If you can’t have the best relationship right now, then be the best employee, businessman, lawyer, doctor or student that you can be. Watch yourself transform into a better person when you focus on the more important things in life, like yourself. The full attention you give your work or studies will help you take your mind off that lousy break-up. And everyone will admire you for your renewed performance.
- Hang out with good friends. After you’ve dried your tears, please, please, please, put on your best outfit and get out of your bat cave. Go sip a frappuccino in one of the best spots in the mall– the coffee shop. Sit outdoors so you can watch the beautiful people go by. The sugar and caffeine in your drink will give you a temporary rush. Grab a chocolate bar. They say chocolate contains chemicals to brighten your mood.
- Cut clean. Change your mobile phone number. Delete his/her number from your address book. Whatever it is you do, don’t even try to talk to him/her again. No excuses here. Don’t say it’s for closure. If you broke up badly, leave it that way. Sometimes, focusing on the real reasons for your break-up grounds you. When you feel like saying something hurtful to your ex, just write it on a piece of paper and throw it away. Don’t text! If you do, you’ll be in worse shape than the day after your break-up if you try to make contact. And please, ex-lovers can’t TRULY be good friends, unless you still dream of love the second time around. In which case, stop reading this– you are not trying to get over a broken heart.
- Finally, if after following tips 1 to 8 you still find yourself sinking into serious depression, go see a shrink. Get professional help. Just because you need to see a psychiatrist or a counselor doesn’t mean that you are crazy. In fact, your desire to seek help means that you are intelligent enough to recognize your limitations. Unfortunately this means spending more money because counseling and possible medication can be expensive. So, if I were you, I’d work on numbers 1 to 8 first and see what happens.
No matter how difficult letting go may seem, don’t do drugs or turn into a shameless alcoholic just because you are feeling miserable. Remember, there are other fishes in the sea.