Heartbreak Leads to Breakthroughs
“Grief can be the garden of compassion. If you keep your heart open through everything, your pain can become your greatest ally in your life's search for love and wisdom.”- Rumi
I’m writing to you from a heart that has been broken, but a heart that also has been healing. I’m talking about the heartbreak from a previous relationship, a heartbreak from the loss of a loved one, a heartbreak from failures, and countless other things that have made my heart feel sad. It hurts.
There laid my heart, ripped out of my chest, the pieces laying so delicately on the floor, gasping for revival.
That’s what it felt like. Of course, in those moments, I had heartache, pounding anxiety, effortlessness, and hopelessness. Who hasn’t felt this way before? But you see, I hadn’t realized how strong I was until my heart shattered.
Many of us go through so many types of heartbreak, let me name a few:
The loss of a family member or loved one- tragic or expected
The romantic breakup kind of loss… WE WERE ON A BREAK! (cue Ross and Rachel)
Losing a friend
An emotional cutoff from a close relationship
Growing pains with a current relationship
Missing someone from a distance
Failing an exam or test
The loss of self-identity
These are just to name a few; I am certain that I am missing more, but these are some tough losses. Whether we think about it or not, it plays a role in who we are and how we function in day to day life. How do we handle heartbreak? There is no exact way to go through the process. Everyone is so unique in their own way and their process is so different. And I say process because there is no such thing as “getting over it.” That is a term that has never sat well with me. I do believe in getting THROUGH it. Whatever IT may be. So how do we handle heartbreak?
Honor your emotions and feelings
Sometimes we tend to ignore what we are feeling. The mental, emotional, and physical reactions our body goes through is a true and real feeling. We may not always know what to do when we feel overwhelmed, and sometimes paralyzed. In those moments, recognize where you are and lean into those feelings. If you want to stay in bed, stay in bed. If you don’t want to socialize, don’t socialize. Do yourself a favor and just be. You will appreciate yourself more by doing so. And importantly, don’t push IT away.
Trust your intuition
We all know what it’s like to have a gut feeling about something. Our body becomes a bit averse to certain situations or events that happen to us, and something just does not sit well with us. That’s a warning. That’s your intuition. It is telling you something and subconsciously, you aren’t sure what that is exactly. But you have a feeling. This is for the times when things are not going so well for you. But your intuition also helps guide you in moments of decision making when you have a true feeling of what you should and shouldn’t do. It is so beneficial to acknowledge what that initial feeling is- in any situation- and follow that.
Give yourself time
Please. There really is no exact time frame to work through tough times. Everyone processes things differently and in their own way. There is no timeline for heartbreak or grief, there really isn’t. If you set a boundary in the way you feel, it puts more pressure on you. But, if you say to yourself, “this is what I am feeling and I’m not sure how long I am going to feel it, but I just am” it gives you permission. Time isn’t everything. There are moments when some say time makes it easier, but sometimes it makes it harder as well. It’s a process, not a race to make it stop.
Don’t be hard on yourself
This one is hard. In moments of heaviness, we tend to put pressure on ourselves. We go through a blame, shame, and guilt circular process that becomes a very negative cycle. The self-talks are going to be hard and sometimes you may not always speak kindly to yourself, but you can’t always beat yourself up for things that may not have always been in your control. While it is easier said than done…it’s all about making a mental shift about how you view yourself and the circumstance. Perhaps, it would be healthier to say things when you feel these toxic thoughts coming through. Challenge those thoughts. Have a conversation with yourself and use reasoning with every toxic or bad thought that comes to your mind. Back up those thoughts with evidence that you are human and you feel.
Make room for processing the relationship
Oh, this is one that comes in many different moments in your life. Or different times. I say this comes in waves. Whatever relationship you may have had or currently have and you are experiencing emotional turmoil, spend time to process what the relationship means to you and find value. There was a reason for the relationship and while it is easier to avoid, it’s more effective to face the relationship head on…no matter how difficult it may be. You can make room by just sitting with the thoughts, making a timeline of the relationship, thanking the relationship or person, showing gratitude and writing a letter to them or a card, or even just journaling your feelings about them and never sending them a letter. It is important to simply give it a place.
In the moments where we feel low and sad. We forget or put aside the things that make us happy and fulfilled. We forget what motivates us to be the strong individuals we are. We forget who we are as individuals. Our self-identity becomes blurred with so much fog and we have a hard time seeing it through. This is normal. The motivation levels go down and even our libido as well. While it may be challenging to get up and do something for yourself, tap into the moments when you were doing something that ignited a flame in you. Whether it’s cozying up with a good magazine or book, going for a walk, drinking a smoothie, treating yourself to sushi…you’ll appreciate yourself more for doing something to help you get your mind off things and become more present with yourself. Even by doing this, keep it a pattern, or schedule time to do something each day or even once a week because it will give you something to look forward to.
Rest & Realign
Rest, rest, rest! I cannot stress this enough. Resting your mind, body, and soul is necessary for your wellbeing. I know some of you may be GO! GO! GO! It sometimes may be easier to keep busy to get your mind off things, but it will become more challenging as time goes by. It takes more energy to hold onto things than to just feel and lean into them. If you are feeling tired or mentally, emotionally, and physically exhausted, take a break. Your body will thank you. You are the only person who can give yourself approval. And what follows with rest, is realigning and setting your intentions for the next minute, day, week, month, or year.
Things can be very hard and the times can be very sad. I hope these guiding words can be a part of your life. I want you to handle this in a way to help you heal and grow through the process. Stay grounded in where you are and who you are. Don’t lose sight of your role and your personal growth. Heartbreak happens, and repairing your universe is crucial to help you regain strength to build your heart back and heal through the moments. And importantly, to have breakthroughs.
I share your loss; I share your pain. I share what you are feeling. I’m here for you. Have good self-talks, have some heart talks with yourself.