***It is always by way of pain one arrives at pleasure*** ∼ Marquis de Sade
One of the toughest challenges in life can be recovering from a breakup and getting over your ex. The emotional pain can be every bit as intense as a throbbing toothache, but with no magic love doctor capable of removing the source of your anguish. It takes time to ease this type of heartache.
You have to give yourself permission to grieve. Your world has been turned upside down. Losing the person in your life that you most depend on is not easy for anyone, but there are some things you can do to make this transition easier.
What Do You Do When You Miss Your Ex?
First Things First – Circle the Wagons
Let the people in your life know what you need
Healthline recommends reaching out to your support system. This is not the time to try and tough it out alone.
Your friends will want to be there for you, so, by all means, lean on them. After all, that’s what friends are for. Remember, you would do the same thing for them.
It is a good idea to be specific about how your friends can help you. For example, if you have to take your dog to the vet and your partner always helped out in the past, ask for support from a friend who knows your dog or likes pets.
If you always took your significant other to the holiday party and don’t want to go alone, then ask a friend to go with you. There’s no reason to skip out on all the fun simply because you feel shy about attending a party alone.
Disengage on Social Media
The last thing you need during your recovery from a broken heart is to see your ex on social media every time you turn around.
In the beginning, it is important to go “cold turkey” for a while and stop all contact and exposure. As tempting as it is to want to check up on them, that type of stalker behavior will not help you get over them.
Mentally detach from the pain and the person causing the pain. I know, you keep asking yourself “why do I miss my ex so much”. But think back over your past and remember how you have survived other losses. It is important to recognize how strong you are. Pain makes us feel helpless if we allow it to take over.
Revel in your independence as soon as you can conjure up some hope. You were a whole and complete person before you became a couple. What activities make you happy?
Guess what? There is no one stopping you from living life to the fullest like you have in the past.
Take a trip down memory lane to a time when you were single and happy. Remind yourself that you did not need a significant other to be happy in the past. That is a liberating thought that will comfort you when you start thinking that you actually need that other person to be happy. It simply isn’t true.
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Accept Certain Truths about the Nature of Love
Truth #1: A lost love was still love.
Love is always a wonderful gift. There is no reason to feel foolish or doubt the love you enjoyed or your feelings. No, you weren’t delusional about your love. Feel good about the good times you shared.
Truth #2: You learn something important from all relationships.
HuffPost quotes Eckhart Tolle’s wise words about the importance of all relationships. “Life will give you whatever experience is most helpful for the evolution of your consciousness.” Just because a relationship ends does not mean you failed.
Truth #3: You are enough. You are worthy of love.
A relationship that ends does not say anything about you or your lovability. Never think that you are not worthy. It is important to always remember that you do not have control over another person. Some people aren’t capable of making a longterm commitment or giving you the love you deserve.
Truth #4: It’s okay to feel the pain without excuses or guilt.
You don’t have to be strong all the time. Above all else, you are human and have strong emotions. There is no need to apologize to yourself or anyone else about feeling the pain and sadness of a loss.
Truth #5: You will survive and thrive again.
Although it may be hard to truly embrace a glimmer of hope when you are feeling rejected, hurt, and lost, it is important to know that ultimately, these bad feelings will pass. All the adages about time healing all wounds are constantly repeated for a reason. Take comfort in knowing that your current heartache is temporary, no matter how much it hurts now when you keep repeating yourself “I miss my ex so much it’s killing me“.
Truth #6: There is no right amount of time to grieve.
Be patient with yourself and recognize that we all differ in the time it takes to move through the stages of grief. It is not a competition.
Don’t allow anyone to try and convince you that you should be over that person in any specific timeframe. It takes as long as it takes.
Fall in Love with Yourself Again
List Your Strengths
Think of traits that you possess that others have complimented you on. Consider what your boss has told you in performance appraisals. How have you helped friends and family members? What struggles have you overcome in life?
Make a list and go into detail. You will be surprised at what you have accomplished and how you have overcome obstacles in your life. We all need to write these down at times so we can remember just how far we’ve come.
- Have you earned a college degree? Write it down.
- Have you made friends with a work colleague that is difficult? Write it down.
- Have you saved up enough money to buy a house, a car that you love, or anything else that you wanted?
- Have you been complimented for your artwork or your great physique?
- Have you learned a new language?
- Have you quit smoking or drinking or any other addiction?
Now, you have the idea. You have accomplished much more than you realize. Write it down and get to know the wonderful and accomplished person you are all over again.
Go Out on Dates with Yourself
Set aside time for something special that you think you will enjoy.
Think of it as a date, as a special time to focus on what you want. Get dressed and look your best. Then lean into the activity and be open to whatever comes your way. It’s amazing the interesting experiences you can have by yourself.
Maybe you’ve always wanted to go to the symphony or try yoga. It doesn’t matter what you decide to do as long as it is something you think you’ll enjoy.
Going on dates with yourself will help you get back in touch with yourself and what you really want and need in your life. You’ve been single before. Remember some of the activities you loved.
Start Over and Recreate Your World
Since it can be complicated to disentangle your old world where you and your partner shared friends and hobbies, sometimes it is easier to start fresh and recreate a new world free from old memories.
It can be much harder to move forward in life if you constantly run into your ex.
Think of it as a new adventure. Transitional periods in life can be some of the most exhilarating. It is always a good idea to remember that there is a big, beautiful world out there waiting for you. All you need to do is show up.
New friends, new activities and new romance are all in your future. That does not mean you should rush into a new romance. That is not usually a great idea. Rushed rebound romances are often short-lived and slow your healing.
How Do You Make Your Ex Miss YOU?
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Is It Normal To Still Miss Your Ex? – Healthy Mental Coping Tips
Tip 1. Stay focused on the present.
This is good advice for everyone, but especially for you to follow after a relationship ends. Huffington Post suggests using meditation or deep breathing to refocus when your mind strays into destructive areas such as worrying about who he might date next or why the relationship ended.
Tips 2. Help someone else.
We all need help at times. Psych Central claims that one of the best ways to stop worrying and dwelling on your own problems is to reach out and help someone else. This act is truly healing for you and the person you help.
There are many opportunities to volunteer or get involved. When you are feeling alone or can’t manage your feelings, then it is time to take the focus off yourself and do something nice for another person.
Tip 3. Love yourself.
It is true that we often treat others better than we treat ourselves. It is particularly important during stressful times to be mindful of self-care. Resist the urge to participate in risky behaviors.
Treat yourself in the same loving way you treat your best friends and family who you encourage to stay safe and eat well. Being kind to oneself means showing compassion for yourself and also tending to your body and mind with great care.
Tip 4. Exercise.
There are physiological reasons why exercise is recommended for people who are depressed or blue. When we move, serotonin and norepinephrine stimulate brain chemicals that make us feel good. Additionally, you benefit physically with that new awesome body you sculpt from working out.
Tip 5. Go to a therapist.
Some people find they can get the support they need from friends and family members. Not everyone is that lucky. If you feel like you need some professional counseling, then by all means, please get some.
Therapists are trained professionals who can help guide you through this tough time. They are also objective which can be extremely helpful with some added benefits that family and friends can’t provide.
What to Expect from the Five Predictable Stages of Grief
Much has been written about the five stages of grief.
As difficult as this time can be, you can take some comfort from knowing what to expect.
Below are the typical stages that you will move through as you adapt to your loss.
Since Elizabeth Kubler Ross’s book entitled, On Death and Dying, was published in 1969, her book has often been quoted as a guide for what to expect. Psychology Today cites Dr. Ross’ five stages of grief as a guide you can follow after a romantic relationship ends.
Below are the five stages to expect after the split.
Stage 1: Denial
Whether you initiated the breakup or you were the surprised party who got the bad news that your significant other wanted out, denial is what you can expect as the first stage of the grieving process.
It is not at all uncommon for your heart to take over, hoping against all odds that this is a temporary situation and that soon you will be back in your loved one’s arms again. The sentence “I really miss my ex” is constantly on your mind.
Don’t be surprised if you find yourself sending out late night texts in a last-ditch attempt to work things out.
Stage 2. Anger
Once you are no longer denying that the relationship is over, then you get good and angry. Your anger may be aimed at your ex, God, or any person that you feel played any role in the demise of your relationship. If there is another woman involved, lookout.
Mutual friends are often faulted if they stay friends with your ex, especially if you feel they should punish your significant other for hurting you. Friends made when you were a couple often find themselves in an awkward position expected to choose between the two of you.
During this stage of the game, destructive behaviors are likely. Hateful emails and voice mails might make you feel better temporarily, but resist the urge if you can. Later, you might regret your actions.
Stage 3: Bargaining
As this word implies, this stage is about trying to negotiate the relationship outcome you want. Big promises and offers are put on the table as a way to haggle to get your way. Sometimes, threats are made too. You’ll try anything to get your way and make the pain go away.
You promise to stop doing things you know your partner hates.
This is the stage where a commitment to marriage counseling is often considered as a last resort to learn how to communicate better or get past an affair.
Bargaining is not only reserved for your partner. Some people bargain with God or turn to desperate measures like placing faith in Tarot card readings or other forces outside of themself as they seek to confirm hope for a reunion.
Friends and family members often try to intervene at this stage. Concerned parties feel like they need to level with you for straying off course.
Stage 4: Depression
Depression looks different on everyone. A few predictable ways depression takes hold of people is in feelings of unexplainable exhaustion or teariness where you feel like any little thing will bring those tears to the surface. If you feel like you could cry at the drop of a hat, you are probably depressed.
Eating habits also change for many people who are experiencing depression. After a breakup, many people either pile on the pounds or lose weight because they forget to eat. We all respond differently. Both extremes are common.
Substance abuse can also rear its ugly head after a breakup.
Drinking too much is common. Drug use is another escape for some people. People who are depressed are much more likely to use narcotics or alcohol to escape from the pain and the feelings of hopelessness that accompany depression.
Stage 5: Acceptance
Acceptance is the phase when you finally come to terms with the loss and accept it so you can move forward in life. This stage is not all smiles and optimism, but as the word implies, you have gotten to a place where you are no longer hoping for a reconciliation and wallowing in your sadness constantly.
It is important to point out that people go through these stages at different rates. How long does it take to stop missing your ex? It might take one person a year to finally accept a breakup. Another person might arrive at the final stage of grief in three months. There is no one-size-fits-all formula for how long it will take a person to get through each stage.
While love certainly gives our life meaning and richness, a relationship that ends can be devastating.
That’s why it is so important to know how to manage the heartache associated with this type of loss.
Everybody experiences certain predictable negative emotions over the disappointment of a romantic relationship that ends. There are five stages of grief that we all must navigate to finally accept our fate. Surrounding yourself with supportive friends and family while also allowing time to grieve without shame or second-guessing ourselves is crucial for a healthy recovery.
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