Getting over a break up can be one of the hardest most intense things you can go through.
Studies show that the parts of the brain activated during a break up are the same ones as a recovering addict. Which explains why 12 Step Programs aren’t just for drug addiction anymore: they can be useful for healing from a break up.
Break ups are very confusing, I know. I remember trying to resolve a recurring issue with my boyfriend for months. During that time my stomach had ached so much, I’d hardly been able to eat and I was constantly nauseous. I didn’t completely leave because some part of me felt that things were fixable. Finally one day as I sat at a coffee shop, avoiding going home I got a text that read: “I don’t care, I’m done.”
I remember the sinking feeling and in my chest and I literally sank into the couch I was sitting on. I felt vulnerable and small in a wide empty space. My sadness made me feel so empty I felt it could echo and I kept trying to hold back from crying in public. I managed to walk to the bathroom and I stood in the stall expecting a breakdown. I felt frozen and could only half burst out crying a few times before I found myself staring at the wall. It was covered with writing and graffiti with positive messages. I was in whirlwind of letters all different colors, wall to wall, ceiling to door all talking about love. Count on girls to graffiti the bathroom with life quotes!
I felt like in the middle of my pain, the Universe was speaking to me through the voices of all the women who had written on the wall.
Everywhere I read: Love is the answer.
Why did we still believe that love was the answer after all the heartache and disappointment? I knew that was the answer and letting that sink in I felt almost instantly better.
I just wanted to know how to heal my broken heart so I asked my friends for advice and no one had a clear answer. Some said it would just take time and others that I would surely find a better match.
During the next few days I did find some things that helped and let me to develop these 12 Steps:
1. Focus on how this is right for you and don’t resist the situation
When bad things happen to us, we tend to focus on how much different we wish the outcome had been. If we actually accept that this is best thing that could have happened to us, that this is the right thing, some of that resistance fades. The pain lessens because we relive some of that sense of loss by not adding images of what “could have been.” By focusing on how this is the right thing for us, we can begin to prepare our mind to find the positive.
2. Think about all the wonderful things you are free to do now
If your ex hated a particular look, short hair now you can cut it off or grow it. You can take long showers, keep all the blankets and finish all the protein powder. You could move somewhere you’ve always wanted to live or travel the world and be on your own schedule and that’s just the start.
Make sure you take the time to meditate at least once a day. Usually the mornings are good because we are still in a receptive state, or right after a workout since your body is calm. Meditation will help you to connect to your own inner voice, with your true goals, and give you a broad perspective on the entire situation. It might also be helpful to keep a journal nearby so you can jot down your thoughts after.
Here is a meditation I made to help you connect to feel peaceful.
or you can try this one by Bashar:
4. Spend As Much Time as you can in Nature
Being in nature naturally relaxes us. When we get fresh air it naturally detoxifies our body and we get an energy boost. Have you heard of “earthing?” It is when you allow yourself to make contact with the the electrons on the surface of the Earth. According to the US National Library of Medicine and National Institutes of Health studies have shown making bare skin contact with the earth and interacting with these electrons can help regulate moods, sleep patterns, neutralize free radicals and overall boost your immune system. You can read more about it here. If you live in the middle of the city you can still go to a park or you can even just be outside and walk down the street. There is something very therapeutic about putting one foot in front of the other and knowing you can keep going.
5. Have An Exercise Routine
When your whole world feels upside down it is helpful to have a routine that includes exercise. During a break up your emotions will vary from sad to furious and exercising can do wonders for both. It will let you get your anger out by physically moving your body, you can run, dance or do yoga depending on the mood. I prefer cardio for the huge endorphin kick that makes me feel like I’m flying through stars or weightlifting which helps me focus on the movements so much I forget about everything else. Attending a group class can be a great incentive as well, you really can’t go wrong with this one.
6. Watch Funny Videos
Humor instantly raises our vibration. That one above is a funny, and helpful one about break ups.
7.Spend time with your friends
Being around friends is definitely a great distraction. Make sure you go out with them at least a few times a week to keep yourself from being a hermit and getting wrapped up in your own thoughts all the time. Interact with people. You’ll find a lot of resistance is just in your head and remember that your friends love you too!
8. Be Kind to Yourself Every Day
Avoid listening to the mean voice in your head that protests when you try to do something productive or that prevents you from trying. Instead focus on your best qualities. You have a lot to share with the world! So buy yourself amazing outfits, that road bike you’ve been wanting or get yourself those flowers your ex always forgot.
9.When things get really tough, take a nap
Sometime during the day you might find yourself extremely sad again. If this happens and none of the above seem to help or you don’t even want to try, take a nap. The nap will give your body the rest it needs, you’ll get some beauty sleep, and you’ll stop all the resistant thoughts. Don’t use this one too much though, because you still have to go out there and live your life! This is just a quick reset.
10. Take a Photography Course or College Class
You know you’re already great at selfies but perhaps you can use the extra time you have now to really develop a hobby. Whether that’s learning to cook delicious recipes, take a photography course, or a college class you will never regret adding more knowledge to your personal resume.
11. Call Home
Reconnect with your family and people you love. You don’t have to tell them everything that happened, but they can be a great source of support for you. Your family loves you no matter what, even if you do get on each other’s nerves sometimes. Spend quality time with them or even a call can help. Remember when you were a kid and didn’t need your ex at all? You were having the time of your life! You can do that again.
12. Remember You are Already Whole
You might not be able to move right away but as long as you can thrive wherever you are, that is the right choice and that is where you need to be. The reason we fear transitions so much is because the ego (the person you think you are) is afraid to die. Your soul however, knows it cannot die and so it constantly strives for growth. People fear not needing anyone because they’re afraid if they can feel completely fulfilled right now, then they might be left completely alone at some point before they have the chance to change their mind. During a meditation my guides asked me why I thought I need a relationship and I said I’d like to share the beauty around me with someone. They told me that since people are already whole, why am I waiting to enjoy the world with someone else when I can be happy right now? They reminded me that everyone is a spark of Source Energy and already powerfully whole. Why did I want to insist on breaking myself to try to be made whole by another? My guides advised me to be fearless, to be where I can thrive, to be whom I am meant to be for I am already whole.
Breaking up with someone is never easy and sometimes it may not feel like the right choice. You might still be indecisive about it, or it may have just happened but you can make the best of it by taking care of yourself, following this 12 Step Program and have the determination to succeed wherever you are. Love is the answer, and sometimes its going to come down to self-love.