Dealing with a broken heart? - How to move on!

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“Sometimes it takes a heartbreak to shake us awake and help us see we are worth so much more than we’re settling for.“
Mandy Hale

Don’t cry when the sun is gone, because the tears won’t let you see the stars.

This article was written and contributed by Jolade

Have you ever been in love? The squishy, warm, sweet, yummy bubble you live in that makes you float literally on top of the world? You see stars when you look at them and they can simply do no wrong! You swear by all you feel, so damn sure it is for real.

The sun shines brighter, the flowers in full bloom, putting a wide smile you cannot seem to get rid of on your face, this is exactly what dreams are made of as told in the movies. Finally, you have met your person, absolute bliss, dreamy!

Flip the script…..

Have you ever had your heart broken? So much you can feel the ache in the depth of your soul? That gut wrenching feeling at the centre of your being that won’t go ease, eating away at your being. Crushing despair enveloping you as you realize your sweet little bubble of love that swore to protect you has left you exposed to the harsh elements.

It feels like your heart has been ripped out, a slap on your face. The betrayal, pain and hollowness are better imagined. You could get it really bad, losing your bearing for a while or maybe even longer.

Heartbreak is an unfortunately common part of the human experience, and it sucks, very much so. We’ve all been there, and it’s safe to say we all want to avoid experiencing heartbreak ever again.

I had my first real taste when I was 19, I couldn’t believe it. We were supposed to be the perfect couple, very much into each other, lots of PDA, what you would call relationship goals these days. But what do you do months down the line when they deny you to your face in the presence of another lady?  I suddenly realized I had believed a lie all along and it was all a sham.

The sad thing about heartbreak is that if you do not heal completely, it will mess you up emotionally for a long time. It will keep manifesting in various dimensions under different guises. Heartbreaks can cause a large amount of stress, especially when it happens suddenly. This stress can affect how we feel emotionally and physically, and may take weeks, months or even years to recover from.

Love can be addictive, like a drug, because of the hormones our brain releases when we become really attached to someone or something. Dopamine and oxytocin in particular are hormones which make us feel good and want to repeat behaviors, and are released at elevated levels when we’re in love.

Then, when heartbreak happens, these hormone levels drop and are replaced with the stress hormone cortisol which is designed to support our body’s fight-or-flight response, too much cortisol over a period of time can contribute to anxiety, nausea, acne and weight gain – all those unpleasant mental and physical symptoms associated with heartbreak.

It can simply turn your life upside down, I know this for a fact because I flunked my tests and missed my classes just because!

The psychological effects may leave us feeling unworthy, unloved, despondent which can cause a decline in your general wellbeing, alienate us and alter our outlook on life. Now, we cannot and shouldn’t let that happen, should we?

So how do we mend? Where do broken hearts go?

  1. Let the feelings flow– you are allowed to feel. Don’t bottle up what you feel inside. Open the flood gate, let it rain! Shed those tears, It is a trauma, a loss in its own right, a shock to your system and as with any type of emotional shock, “you want to be really gentle with yourself and you want to allow yourself to feel your feelings. Acknowledge what happened to you, it may be difficult at first but you acknowledge you must for you to even start processing your feeling.
  2. Don’t become those feelings– it is easy to vow to take your own pound of flesh on every unsuspecting love interest that comes your way. But would that not turn you into a heartbreaking monster as well? Do not be caught up in your pain or misery. Don’t wallow in self-pity. It is not really worth your time don’t you think so? Pick yourself up take a step forward. Like we say these days, we meuve!
  3. You need your clique– having a good support system will help you heal faster. (Cue in Dolly Parton, it’s my time) we’ve all had our misty eyes our real friends stood by to dry. A lot of people love you and they want to support you, but often they don’t know how because you’re not telling them. Opening up our pain point doesn’t come easy to many of us but it really won’t hurt to share your pain with your inner circle, they are inner circle for a reason, right?
  4. It is ok to cut off all communication– don’t go seeking closure, you may never find it, in fact you may just be opening yourself up to more pain. They will probably continue using you while you delude yourself that you were the one who got away. Do not be a willing tool. If you give in to this feeling and see your ex again, you’ll struggle to move forward and find yourself stuck months and maybe even years later. I understand that urge to see them one last time, to ask those nagging questions, trust me on this one, I have been there. It is a trap, don’t fall for it.
  5. Give yourself the closure you need if you must– most times you’re not going to get the closure you need from your ex, and you’ll have to find it on your own. You don’t even want them lying to you or make you feel less of yourself especially if you have to grovel for it. Create your own healthy narrative and hold on to them, it is good for your self-esteem.
  6. Don’t idealize or idolize them– honestly, they are not the best thing you never had. while you don’t want to deny that there were good parts of your relationship, you also don’t want to fixate on them. Draw up a list, be it physical or mental on all the things you never really liked about them anyway. Come on, they are not perfect! Now is a great time to focus on all was wrong with them and all the subtle signs and things you ignored all in the name of loving. This may help counterbalance all the obsessive thinking you will probably be experiencing around what you miss about your ex and why they were so great, not.
  7. Acknowledge you– you are a good person who deserve all good things of life. Do not for one minute think you are the reason they left. Do not fall into the trap of perfection or trying to become what they want wishing they would come back. That is your low self-esteem talking. Also, the feelings of rejection and diminished self-worth could trigger unhealthy responses like over- or undereating or substance abuse, which could lead to a depressive spiral. That is not a route you want to take, it leads to utter destruction. Don’t go about texting them, stalking their Instagram, overanalyzing or indulging in obsessive behaviors. Simply focus on you.
  8. Nothing last forever, even this pain you feel– However much pain you’re experiencing, best believe the phrase” this too shall pass”, it may be difficult to accept given the heaviness in your heart but have some faith. Remember what they say about time? It does heal. As the pain subsides, reflect on the relationship, consider the good you got out of it, embrace the excitement of new possibilities and remind yourself how awesome you are.
  9. Create new memories– Realize that the breakup is likely going to create certain voids in your life, all those activities you do with them, say you and your ex always spend the weekend doing Netflix and chills, suddenly your weekend is wide open/ do not slip into despondency, call up your friends it is time to make new memories. Take intentional steps to move forward with your life by doing what you love and exploring new interest. Yeah, that is what starz do.
  10. Date cautiously– test the waters; you are not a hermit. You will want to get on the dating scene again, but don’t go looking for a rebound. Ensure you are healed emotionally to ensure you are not repeating a vicious cycle. Don’t push yourself to hard there is really no timelines to it, keep your options open until you feel ready. Remember Nos 2 above.

Come out from where you have been, tell your heart to beat again!!

I wish you a love that is beautiful, memorable, and warm. Should the stars align, I wish you forever!

Cheers,

Jolade

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2 thoughts on “Dealing with a broken heart?”

  1. Yinka Elegbede

    Brings back fresh memories as I read through the article. Miss those memorable days but not my ex anymore. Great for curing heartbreak.

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