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How to Heal a Broken Heart

How to Heal a Broken Heart

Break-ups are never easy.  Whether you were “just dating” or married, with or without kids, it hurts when a relationship ends.  To spend time grieving is perfectly natural and healthy but  there comes a time when your heart yearns to be healed.

The following 5 steps can help you begin down that path of healing.

1. It’s Not About You—Really, It’s Not

You know that old saying “it’s not you, it’s me”?  While we usually think of it as a cop-out, a way for someone to spare our feelings, the reality is that it is actually true. People act a certain way, make certain decisions, and choose to life their life a certain way because of their own desires and needs; not because of us.

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When someone is a jerk, or says something nasty, or leaves you, it is because of something going on inside of them. Please know that I am not excluding the influence of your own behavior that may have precipitated the break-up, but it comes down to the fact that your ex left because of their reactions and feelings surrounding that event and it may have been the right choice for them.

Once a relationship ends, you can’t go back and change things no matter how much you want to, so it’s best to stop beating yourself up about the past. Forgive yourself for your part in the break up, learn lessons from it, and try not to take it personally.  Realize that you are perfect just the way you are and there is someone out there who will agree.

2. This Too Shall Pass

I know it doesn’t seem like it now, but the pain will go away.

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Allow yourself to really feel your feelings—wallow in them if you want—and know that they are temporary. Sometimes it’s good to think back to another time in your life where you felt broken, and then realize that it did, indeed, get better.  This will too. If you have faith that these feelings will pass, that you will feel better someday, that day will arrive much sooner.

3. Forgive & Pray

You may be feeling some very negative emotions towards your ex, such as anger, resentment, and frustration, but harboring these feelings is only hurting one person—you.  In order to save yourself, you need to forgive your ex.  Now, I don’t mean you have to call them up and tell them they are forgiven (although you can if you want to), you just need to forgive them in your heart.

I have found that praying for that person helps with being able to forgive them and move on.  Pray for their happiness and continued health and mean it when you say it.  You should feel your anger and resentment getting less and less if you continue this practice. Doing this has the added benefit of showing yourself what a good person you really are.  Hey, you even pray for those that hurt you, so you must be a loving, generous person who deserves love.

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4. Live Life One Day at a Time

Concentrate on today, and focus on the present moment. It’s said that worry is like a rocking chair: it keeps you busy, but doesn’t get you anywhere.  It’s time to stop worrying about the future and notice where you are today. Don’t worry about your sister’s wedding in 6 months and the fact that now you don’t have a date. Don’t worry about what will happen if you see him around town with another girl—just  live for today, the rest will take care of itself. Be present for all the gifts the universe is trying to give you today.

5. It’s All About Progress

Life is hard: if it wasn’t, we would all be perfect people living in a perfect world. Give yourself kudos for any and all progress you make, since anytime you are able to move in a forward direction, that is worth celebrating. Keep track of all the progress you have made  by keeping a journal of all your successes.  Then, when you feel that you are going backwards, read through it and you will realize just how far you have come.

Final Thought

Healing your heart is really about healing your whole self, so be sure to take this opportunity to delve deeper into who you are and what you want. Start by appreciating the lessons you learned from the past, being present in the here and now, and using your power to create the future you want.

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The Gentle Art of Saying No

The Gentle Art of Saying No

No!

It’s a simple fact that you can never be productive if you take on too many commitments — you simply spread yourself too thin and will not be able to get anything done, at least not well or on time.

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But requests for your time are coming in all the time — through phone, email, IM or in person. To stay productive, and minimize stress, you have to learn the Gentle Art of Saying No — an art that many people have problems with.

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What’s so hard about saying no? Well, to start with, it can hurt, anger or disappoint the person you’re saying “no” to, and that’s not usually a fun task. Second, if you hope to work with that person in the future, you’ll want to continue to have a good relationship with that person, and saying “no” in the wrong way can jeopardize that.

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But it doesn’t have to be difficult or hard on your relationship. Here are the Top 10 tips for learning the Gentle Art of Saying No:

  1. Value your time. Know your commitments, and how valuable your precious time is. Then, when someone asks you to dedicate some of your time to a new commitment, you’ll know that you simply cannot do it. And tell them that: “I just can’t right now … my plate is overloaded as it is.”
  2. Know your priorities. Even if you do have some extra time (which for many of us is rare), is this new commitment really the way you want to spend that time? For myself, I know that more commitments means less time with my wife and kids, who are more important to me than anything.
  3. Practice saying no. Practice makes perfect. Saying “no” as often as you can is a great way to get better at it and more comfortable with saying the word. And sometimes, repeating the word is the only way to get a message through to extremely persistent people. When they keep insisting, just keep saying no. Eventually, they’ll get the message.
  4. Don’t apologize. A common way to start out is “I’m sorry but …” as people think that it sounds more polite. While politeness is important, apologizing just makes it sound weaker. You need to be firm, and unapologetic about guarding your time.
  5. Stop being nice. Again, it’s important to be polite, but being nice by saying yes all the time only hurts you. When you make it easy for people to grab your time (or money), they will continue to do it. But if you erect a wall, they will look for easier targets. Show them that your time is well guarded by being firm and turning down as many requests (that are not on your top priority list) as possible.
  6. Say no to your boss. Sometimes we feel that we have to say yes to our boss — they’re our boss, right? And if we say “no” then we look like we can’t handle the work — at least, that’s the common reasoning. But in fact, it’s the opposite — explain to your boss that by taking on too many commitments, you are weakening your productivity and jeopardizing your existing commitments. If your boss insists that you take on the project, go over your project or task list and ask him/her to re-prioritize, explaining that there’s only so much you can take on at one time.
  7. Pre-empting. It’s often much easier to pre-empt requests than to say “no” to them after the request has been made. If you know that requests are likely to be made, perhaps in a meeting, just say to everyone as soon as you come into the meeting, “Look guys, just to let you know, my week is booked full with some urgent projects and I won’t be able to take on any new requests.”
  8. Get back to you. Instead of providing an answer then and there, it’s often better to tell the person you’ll give their request some thought and get back to them. This will allow you to give it some consideration, and check your commitments and priorities. Then, if you can’t take on the request, simply tell them: “After giving this some thought, and checking my commitments, I won’t be able to accommodate the request at this time.” At least you gave it some consideration.
  9. Maybe later. If this is an option that you’d like to keep open, instead of just shutting the door on the person, it’s often better to just say, “This sounds like an interesting opportunity, but I just don’t have the time at the moment. Perhaps you could check back with me in [give a time frame].” Next time, when they check back with you, you might have some free time on your hands.
  10. It’s not you, it’s me. This classic dating rejection can work in other situations. Don’t be insincere about it, though. Often the person or project is a good one, but it’s just not right for you, at least not at this time. Simply say so — you can compliment the idea, the project, the person, the organization … but say that it’s not the right fit, or it’s not what you’re looking for at this time. Only say this if it’s true — people can sense insincerity.

Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

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