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How to Heal a Broken Heart: Why It Hurts Bad and How to Recover

How to Heal a Broken Heart: Why It Hurts Bad and How to Recover

It is quite hard to focus on recovering when you are questioning yourself about what went wrong. For some of us, it feels like we have to start over, and for others it may be easier to move on. There isn’t one set way on how to heal a broken heart. But there are actions you can take to ensure you come out on top.

One of the best things I learned in my life was to always focus on myself first, even in a relationship. This came after having to start over many times after a relationship ended.

I hope this not only helps but also inspires you to remember that, with or without someone, the most important relationship we have in this life is with ourselves. Don’t forget you in the process of your heartache — you are the most important person to remember through this. Whether you made a big mistake in the relationship or not, this time right now is about ensuring well-being is priority.

The science behind a broken heart

The following video is a simple yet great demonstration of what people are going through with a broken heart.

Heartbreaks are painful, but with some guidance and self-motivation, you can channel the pain you may be experiencing into a healing process. It is up to you to make the decision, but know that you are never alone in your journey.

How to heal a broken heart gently

To heal a broken heart, it maybe difficult at first, but gradually you will get better with these steps:

1. Make a choice: either run from the pain or deal with it.

Hopefully you want to deal with it and not distract yourself by other means (i.e. overworking, substance abuse, jumping into another relationship, being so busy you cant think).

Rise up to the challenge and deal with it head-on. This will allow you to be free of the pain in the time it takes rather than lingering on it forever.

2. Leave no room for guilt in your life going forward.

If you made a mistake then, by all means feel the guilt for the moment.

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You may want to extend your apologies depending on the situation. But ongoing guilt is a killer. Get rid of it.

3. Don’t be hard on yourself in the process of healing.

Feel your emotions and acknowledge them. Suppressing what you feel is robotic and is sure to come out in another way.

It is awkward and uncomfortable but going through the motions allows you to feel like a human being. It is normal. Don’t be embarrassed for feeling the way you do.

4. Lose yourself in what you’re passionate about.

Talk, write, sing, dance, draw and create–if you have a passion that you lose yourself in, then use it to help you heal.

Music and writing is my healthy escape and I can express myself through a journal without judgment from anyone. It gets my thoughts and feelings out. I end up creating some great pieces too!

5. Feel the good and the bad in each and every day.

Our mindsets can either help us to go forward or keep us in a state of fear, sadness and regret. It’s very easy to remain hurt and angry, but that won’t help us personally.

Take each day as it comes and choose the attitude that will uplift you.

How to feel better afterwards (and really move on)

When you start to feel a bit better, it’s time to take actions to move on with your life. With these tips, you will find letting go and moving on a lot easier:

1. Take good care of your body

How’s your health? Yes, it sounds cliché but having a healthy mind, body and soul is a great foundation for recovery.

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It will help you release the hurt and be clear minded in your everyday life matters. Stress can be decreased and your thoughts ordered.

2. Get happy with you again if you are not already.

Focus on your ambitions and goals. If you don’t have any, it’s time to start thinking.

Confidence can be ignited or found again by being motivated and seeing your dreams come about.

Heartbreak will recover, but time is something we cannot gain back.

3. Surround yourself with people who will allow you to be you.

Talk to people about what you are going through. It’s what friends and family are for–to help each other out.

Do some fun things with friends and groups of people. I went to a few festivals with groups of friends and danced the day away. It really showed me how I am not alone and I can have fun without a partner.

4. Forgive yourself and forgive the person in your own time.

Making a choice to forgive immediately did not mean that I actually got over my heartbreak straight away. It just put forgiveness in motion and I was able to see the positive in what I learned from the whole experience.

It kept my heart free from hate and anger–something that drags us down if we hold onto it.

5. Listen to your inner voice and be peaceful with it.

Connection to the universe, nature, meditation or prayer–have you neglected your spiritual side?

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Get in touch with the inner self and listen to the words that come to you. Seek peace, joy, healing and strength through this time and you can receive it.

6. Re-visit an old place with new people.

Some people like to stay away from the places they went with a past relationship–I like to go to those very places. I remember one restaurant I continued to go to every Saturday, like I did in my relationship, except with friends. I enjoyed the breakfast.

Just because a relationship doesn’t work does not mean that places on the map need to be crossed out. There is no way I was sacrificing my favorite breakfast! And neither should you.

7. Avoid negativity towards the entire gender.

“All men/women are cheaters!”

I have never been one to engage in this banter.

Just because we go through a bad experience or breakup doesn’t mean the entire human race is going to hurt us. If we have this outlook, we may miss the wonderful opportunities and people that come our way.

8. Do something completely for yourself. Alone.

Having time to be on our own allows us to get used to our own company again.

I know many people who fill up their time with others after a break-up. It’s very obvious they don’t want to be alone. The only way to overcome being alone is by being alone!

Enjoy your company. It’s better than you think: When You Start to Enjoy Being Alone, These 10 Things Will Happen

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9. Break the pattern.

After a few heartbreaks, I noticed a pattern and it seemed like I was dating the same types of men. I researched and looked within to see why this may be occurring.

There is a lot of information out there about repeating habits and dating the same types of people. I came to my own conclusions and broke my pattern.

These articles maybe helpful for you:

10. Learn from your mistakes.

After each relationship I have made mental note of what I do and don’t want in a relationship. I admit my standards did raise a lot, but I am glad they did.

I have a lot to offer as a person in a relationship, in life and to others. Focusing on being with the right person for me “one day” meant that I didn’t waste my time in meaningless relationships.

“This is a good sign, having a broken heart. It means we have tried for something.” 
- Elizabeth Gilbert, Eat, Pray, Love

There are many ways to heal a broken heart, but the most important thing is for you to know that it is possible.

Life is filled with solutions and wonderful ways in which to overcome hardship. If you are willing, you will find what you are looking for. And if a mended, happy, recovered heart is what you seek, then you will find exactly that.

Featured photo credit: Pixabay via pixabay.com

More by this author

Anjelica Ilovi

Anjelica writes about how to grind and unwind for increased productivity, focus and joyful living anjelicailovi.com {grind + unwind}

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Last Updated on May 21, 2019

How to Communicate Effectively in Any Relationship

How to Communicate Effectively in Any Relationship

For all our social media bravado, we live in a society where communication is seen less as an art, and more as a perfunctory exercise. We spend so much time with people, yet we struggle with how to meaningfully communicate.

If you believe you have mastered effective communication, scan the list below and see whether you can see yourself in any of the examples:

Example 1

You are uncomfortable with a person’s actions or comments, and rather than telling the individual immediately, you sidestep the issue and attempt to move on as though the offending behavior or comment never happened.

You move on with the relationship and develop a pattern of not addressing challenging situations. Before long, the person with whom you are in relationship will say or do something that pushes you over the top and predictably, you explode or withdraw completely from the relationship.

In this example, hard-to-speak truths become never- expressed truths that turn into resentment and anger.

Example 2

You communicate from the head and without emotion. While what you communicate makes perfect sense to you, it comes across as cold because it lacks emotion.

People do not understand what motivates you to say what you say, and without sharing your feelings and emotions, others experience you as rude, cold or aggressive.

You will know this is a problem if people shy away from you, ignore your contributions in meetings or tell you your words hurt. You can also know you struggle in this area if you find yourself constantly apologizing for things you have said.

Example 3

You have an issue with one person, but you communicate your problem to an entirely different person.

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The person in whom you confide lacks the authority to resolve the matter troubling you, and while you have vented and expressed frustration, the underlying challenge is unresolved.

Example 4

You grew up in a family with destructive communication habits and those habits play out in your current relationships.

Because you have never stopped to ask why you communicate the way you do and whether your communication style still works, you may lack understanding of how your words impact others and how to implement positive change.

If you find yourself in any of the situations described above, this article is for you.

Communication can build or decimate worlds and it is important we get it right. Regardless of your professional aspirations or personal goals, you can improve your communication skills if you:

  • Understand your own communication style
  • Tailor your style depending on the needs of the audience
  • Communicate with precision and care
  • Be mindful of your delivery, timing and messenger

1. Understand Your Communication Style

To communicate effectively, you must understand the communication legacy passed down from our parents, grandparents or caregivers. Each of us grew up with spoken and unspoken rules about communication.

In some families, direct communication is practiced and honored. In other families, family members are encouraged to shy away from difficult conversations. Some families appreciate open and frank dialogue and others do not. Other families practice silence about substantive matters, that is, they seldom or rarely broach difficult conversations at all.

Before you can appreciate the nuance required in communication, it helps to know the familial patterns you grew up with.

2. Learn Others Communication Styles

Communicating effectively requires you to take a step back, assess the intended recipient of your communication and think through how the individual prefers to be communicated with. Once you know this, you can tailor your message in a way that increases the likelihood of being heard. This also prevents you from assuming the way you communicate with one group is appropriate or right for all groups or people.

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If you are unsure how to determine the styles of the groups or persons with whom you are interacting, you can always ask them:

“How do you prefer to receive information?”

This approach requires listening, both to what the individuals say as well as what is unspoken. Virgin Group CEO Richard Branson noted that the best communicators are also great listeners.

To communicate effectively from relationship to relationship and situation to situation, you must understand the communication needs of others.

3. Exercise Precision and Care

A recent engagement underscored for me the importance of exercising care when communicating.

On a recent trip to Ohio, I decided to meet up with an old friend to go for a walk. As we strolled through the soccer park, my friend gently announced that he had something to talk about, he was upset with me. His introduction to the problem allowed me to mentally shift gears and prepare for the conversation.

Shortly after introducing the shift in conversation, my friend asked me why I didn’t invite him to the launch party for my business. He lives in Ohio and I live in the D.C. area.

I explained that the event snuck up on me, and I only started planning the invite list three weeks before the event. Due to the last-minute nature of the gathering, I opted to invite people in the DMV area versus my friends from outside the area – I didn’t want to be disrespectful by asking them to travel on such short notice.

I also noted that I didn’t want to be disappointed if he and others declined to come to the event. So I played it safe in terms of inviting people who were local.

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In the moment, I felt the conversation went very well. I also checked in with my friend a few days after our walk, affirmed my appreciation for his willingness to communicate his upset and our ability to work through it.

The way this conversation unfolded exemplified effective communication. My friend approached me with grace and vulnerability. He approached me with a level of curiosity that didn’t put me on my heels — I was able to really listen to what he was saying, apologize for how my decision impacted him and vow that going forward, I would always ask rather than making decisions for him and others.

Our relationship is intact, and I now have information that will help me become a better friend to him and others.

4. Be Mindful of Delivery, Timing and Messenger

Communicating effectively also requires thinking through the delivery of the message one intends to communicate as well as the appropriate time for the discussion.

In an Entrepreneur.com column, VIP Contributor Deep Patel, noted that persons interested in communicating well need to master the art of timing. Patel noted,[1]

“Great comedians, like all great communicators, are able to feel out their audience to determine when to move on to a new topic or when to reiterate an idea.”

Communicating effectively also requires thoughtfulness about the messenger. A person prone to dramatic, angry outbursts should never be called upon to deliver constructive feedback, especially to people whom they do not know. The immediate aftermath of a mass shooting is not the ideal time to talk about the importance of the Second Amendment rights.

Like everyone else, I must work to ensure my communication is layered with precision and care.

It requires precision because words must be carefully tailored to the person with whom you are speaking.

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It requires intentionality because before one communicates, one should think about the audience and what the audience needs in order to hear your message the way you intended it to be communicated.

It requires active listening which is about hearing verbal and nonverbal messages.

Even though we may be right in what we say, how we say it could derail the impact of the message and the other parties’ ability to hear the message.

Communicating with care is also about saying things that the people in our life need to hear and doing so with love.

The Bottom Line

When I left the meeting with my dear friend, I wondered if I was replicating or modeling this level of openness and transparency in the rest of my relationships.

I was intrigued and appreciative. He’d clearly thought about what he wanted to say to me, picked the appropriate time to share his feedback and then delivered it with care. He hit the ball out of the park and I’m hopeful we all do the same.

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Featured photo credit: Kenan Buhic via unsplash.com

Reference

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