Dealing with breakups
Love is a feeling that can develop over time — may be days, weeks, months or years. For some it may just happen suddenly, overnight or even in a moment — at first sight. It is often beyond the control of the two parties involved. It is an involuntary but definitely pleasurable feeling. An experience that keeps one mentally preoccupied and in a dreamy state. Love has inspired people to sing, write, paint, embroider and cook. Imagine what it would feel like if this pleasant state of mind were to cease suddenly!
There would be a vacuum — an emptiness that would seem impossible to fill. That is what a break up would feel like. No matter which of the two parties takes the first step to end the relationship, the effect is felt by both, may be at different levels. It is a difficult time for both. There are too many things to deal with — memories, emotions, dreams, promises and much more. However, like most things in life, this too can be dealt with effectively:
- Accept the truth: Tell yourself that the relationship has ended, and there is nothing more to it. If required, repeat it in your mind every day till your mind accepts the reality completely. This exercise is even more necessary if you are in denial.
- Erase memories: Get rid of all the things that may remind you of the relationship — photographs, gifts, souvenirs, even phone numbers. Block the person on social media. This may sound dramatic or extreme, but works wonders because it gives a proper closure.
- Distract yourself: Take time off to reconnect with friends; go out to dine with old pals; watch movies with them or may be take a small vacation. While enjoying yourself with friends, make sure you do not let even the remotest feeling of guilt creep into your head. It always takes two to tango. Whether a relationship succeeds or fails, the blame rests on both parties equally. So, understand that you are not to blame. Just let yourself go and try to enjoy the freedom.
- Rediscover yourself: Explore new things or just go back to being your true self. Often, two people in love forget their true identities and immerse themselves completely in the relationship. They spend more time with each other than with their friends. After a breakup, they should try and return to what they were. If you have neglected a hobby, get back to it with vengeance. Take up reading, music, dance, whatever it is that you yearned to do, but could not spare the time for earlier. Reclaim your independence.
- Revive your social circle: Attend family functions, get-togethers and social events. Meet people and interact with friends at every available opportunity. Do not let go of a chance to dress up, look good and have fun. This will ensure that you do not slip into depression.
- Change houses: If it is possible to take an assignment or project that will take you out of the city or require you to travel, it would be ideal. However, that is not always possible but a simple change of scene can help. If possible, move into a new house or share a room or flat with a new roommate. If these options are not feasible, redo your present accommodation. New colours, new décor and a whole new look can work their magic and help push you towards new beginnings.
- Focus on fitness: It will be a great idea to join a yoga class as yoga works on the body as well as the mind. Of course, options are innumerable out there today — Zumba, aerobics, Tai Chi or even contemporary dancing. Staying physically fit also ensures a healthy mind. After all, tough times do not last but tough people do. Make yourself physically tough and mentally strong.
- Treat yourself: You deserve to feel good. That feeling can come from fancy food, a relaxing massage or even a new hairstyle. Hit the spa, pamper yourself and your body. Enjoy your favourite food, but try not to eat alone or you may overdo it. Put together a fancy dinner yourself and invite your school mates or colleagues over. Buy yourself a flattering dress. Go shopping with your friends and splurge — it is allowed once in a while.
- Focus on your professional life: Do your best at work. Give your career your best shot. Success at work can give you the much required confidence to tackle anything in life. A break-up may then appear too small a challenge to overcome.
- Consult a therapist: Things will not return to normal overnight. You will need time to grieve, process what has happened, recover, forget and move on. However, sometimes, despite your efforts, you may find it difficult to come out of a breakup unscathed. You may find it difficult to sleep or focus on work. You may lose appetite and shut yourself up to cry in isolation. Crying is a good outlet of course, but if you find your pillow soaked with tears every morning, for the longest time, then it is better to seek professional help. Counsellors and therapists are trained to help you be honest with yourself and come to terms with what has happened.
Today, you can even seek counselling without anybody coming to know. You may not even have to step out of your house. Counsellors and therapists are available online 24x7. They can help you regain trust in relationships and suggest ways to cope.
Remember, breakups do not mean the end of everything good. There is always something better out there for you. All you need to do is keep your heart open and try to reach out.