6 tips for managing and moving on after break up
The end of a relationship, be it the end of a marriage or long-term relationship, affects people in different ways. Rachael Scharrer, founder of online resource DivorceAnswered.com.au, shares her tips on dealing with the break-up and moving on with everyday life.
- GRIEVE and REFLECT. Give yourself the time and space to mourn the end of the relationship. Your thoughts and visions for the future will no longer come to fruition with your ex-spouse which can be difficult if the break-up was unexpected or if you were emotionally invested. Take some space to reflect on what you did well in that relationship, where you could improve and what lessons you can take from it. Reflection and learning your lessons can only make you a better person in your next relationship.
- MUSIC. Music moves moods. It can change your emotional state dramatically and quickly. Best of all, it has been scientifically proven! Depending on the genre of music that you like, you might like to consider creating different song list or compilations for your different moods. Once you have your music on, allow the music to move your body – sing, sway, dance and jump as you feel appropriate. Dance and sing in the dark. “Dance like no one is watching. Sing like no one can hear.” Do it unreservedly and note how good it makes you feel.
- CONFIDE IN FRIENDS. When you separate or break up, you will need additional support from your friends and family. However, for some friends don’t have the emotional intelligence or ability to offer that support - Some friends will have “the depth of a puddle…” or be “fair weather friends” while others will support you “through thick and thin.” Pick and choose the friends that you can talk to about your break-up or separation. If you are fortunate enough, you may have a friend who separated or broke-up around the same time finding themselves in a similar situation as you. You can then mutually lean on each other, raise positivity and help each other through the days, weeks and years to come.
- ACCEPTANCE. At some point, you need to accept that the relationship has run its course. It isn’t helpful or healthy for you to harass, stalk or convince your ex-spouse to be with you. To avoid continually thinking about your ex-spouse and what they are doing (or any drunken dials), remove them from your contacts and social media. The best ‘revenge’ you can get is by moving on and living your life to the fullest.
- DISTRACTION and OBSESSION. At break-up, people commonly go out and get drunk, they may even go on a ‘hooking up’ spree. Similarly, some people choose to retreat at home with the company of ice-cream and chocolate. Others become obsessive about certain aspects of their lives - exercise, healthy eating or throwing themselves into work. Provided that your distractions and obsessions are healthy, not harmful to you or others and of a temporary nature, then it can be a natural part of the break-up process.
- FILL THE HOLE. Create some new routines. Fill the “hole” in your life by doing activities alone or with friends so that you can have other conversation points other than your break-up, divorce or ex-spouse. A coffee or a walk with a friend is just as good as venting. Join a social group of touch-football, dance or art class. By productively filling the time you would have otherwise spent with your ex-spouse, you are keeping your mind off your recent situation and creating other (more interesting) topics for conversation.
If you are struggling with the end of the relationship or break-up, please seek the assistance from a therapist, counsellor, psychologist or your GP.
Everyone handles breaking up in different ways. There is no wrong or right way to break up or recover from a break up. When you are ready to move on, remember that you are at your most attractive when you are happy with yourself and your life. As the saying goes, someone great will come into your life when you least expect it.