5 steps to getting better from a heartbreak

by Zoe A. Choo

Positivism. Yes, positive.

Just a couple of days back, I was having a conversation with a friend and she was sharing with me about a couple of issues she’s currently dealing with in her life (core issue: bad break-up) in which I can understand and relate because I had went through a fair share of such myself. Well, we all learn from experiences, especially painful ones, and we grow. All living things grow.

So back to my friend, Rachel (I’m not disclosing her real name). She asked me how does someone put themselves in optimism in such a painful situation.

So here’s some advice I have after a few years of trying-to-be-better.  

1. Accept the reality of things, now – face it.

Keyword, NOW. Not the reality of the past, in which always seems better unless you’re in a better place. Not the could’ve been, that is not even reality. NOW.

We cannot do anything about the situation if we run away from it. Getting drunk with your friend’s guestlist and unlimited alcohol and then taking tons of Instagram photos with that hot, new fling that will (90% of the time) be forgotten, the “we’ve a wild night but we’re so damn heartbroken” support group and then a selfie some time later with the whole “I miss you” anecdote or poem and not forgetting, secretly hoping (being excessively active on social media) for a reaction from whoever “you” are writing for. That, my friends, is a sure way to mess your life more than it already is. I understand you’re miserable because I did all that.

If that has already become a lifestyle, it’s really never too late to start doing something different about it.

2. Surround yourself with positive people.

We all need a good support system to help us get through, away from the old and into a better future. Surround yourself with people loves you for who you are, those who encourages you, and with those who has been through it before, and is at a better place now. Go to the people who are at the place you want to be at. Give your attention back to them too.

If you’d still want to party like a royal because you like that kind of buzz, go ahead. I tried to be your queen bee. I tried.

3. Stop rehearsing it the hurt.

After surrounding yourself with a good support system, quit being Nyan Cat (heartbroken remix). It’s not good for us anyway, speaking from experience, it was better when I actually choose forget about an incident than mention it.

Healing takes place with time, and sometimes it takes a longer time because we keep scratching the fresh wound. I know sometimes it gets so itchy we’ve to talk about the whole incident again. SSSTTTOOOOPPP.  Just let it heal. Stop scratching it – coming from someone who grows up with skin problems.
I tend to tell people I’m getting better (physically, mentally and emotionally), because I always believe that. Rehearse optimism.

(Stop getting wasted too)

4. Forgiveness.

This means letting it all go. Forgive yourself and everyone involved, forgive what has been done, you cannot undo what has been done, but you can overwrite. Forgiveness is a choice, and it is an act out of love. Moreover, forgiveness saves us from self-condemnation, the potent bondage of vengeance and a whole spectrum of regrets. Holding onto the injustice that has been done or hanging onto the guilt for all that has happen only puts us in a labyrinth of anguish.

Remember, the goal here is always to be in a better place, on higher grounds where the situation is placed under a clearer perspective for study – to make wiser decisions on how to act next.
Keyword, ACT. Not react.

5. Look inside you.

Now when you know you’re in a better place, look at the core issue in yourself. “Why do we do what we do?” (one of my most favourite questions) I’ve surprised myself many times when I discover that I was acting and feeling the way I do because of an unresolved hurt buried a long time ago. Don’t think too much about why the people involved in the situation did whatever they did, the thing about all of us is that we can never ever see the entire picture even as a professional detective or a very anointed prophet of God.

FINAL TIP HERE (this point is out of sequence but nevertheless important)
It’s okay to breakdown, that just proves your humanity. Being positive isn’t forsaking our feelings. Constantly shining the spotlight through social media on the “high life” only serves as an evidence of the sadness inside. I’ve spent a few years doing that and trust me, it doesn’t change anything much on the inside. Strength is not determined by our ability to act fine but our ability to come through with it.

Last but not least, I surrendered and prayed – and that was the greatest breakthrough I got. 

Disclaimer: I am not a relationship expert, or a certified psychiatrist/psychologist/counselor.  All of these are from my personal experiences. Still, I hope this helps. Remember, it’s the follow through that takes effect. We’re all creatures of habit.