It’s okay to feel the full effects of a breakup. Regardless of how it ended, your emotions are likely fluctuating anywhere between sadness to anger and even empowerment. If you’re recently out of love, we’ve got five essential tips to help you move into this next phase of life and seize the opportunity to spend time on yourself. Recovering from a breakup will be full of setbacks and breakthroughs—just remember to be patient and take everything one day at a time.
1. Don’t Be Afraid to Ask For Help
It’s easy to feel like you can tackle this alone, but there’s nothing wrong with asking for help. Your closest friends and family will become some of your biggest assets in working through your breakup. You can rely on these people for anything from advice to simply being a physical presence when you begin to feel lonely.
If you start to notice any symptoms of depression or anxiety following the separation, consider reaching out to a doctor or therapist to help increase your support network. These professionals can help you develop healthy coping strategies and monitor overall health.
Don’t feel embarrassed or guilty about turning to others or like you’re betraying the trust of your ex-partner. Accepting help and talking about your feelings will help you move forward.
2. Fall in Love With Your Future
The period right after a breakup is your chance to be selfish. While that adjective might normally have a negative connotation, we’re talking about the need for a little extra self-love and self-support. Take advantage of this experience to reshape who you are and refocus on who you want to become.
Create a Pinterest board of your vision for the future: where do you see yourself in a year? What haircut do you have? What job offer have you accepted? What does your home decor look like?
Allow yourself to become excited by the possibilities to come, rather than mourn what used to be. You’ll notice that as you invest more time in yourself, your confidence will continually grow stronger.
3. Focus on Your Mind and Body
Mental and physical health each play a vital role in our overall well being and often significantly impact each other. Studies show that consistent physical activity can help fight off symptoms of depression, anxiety, stress, trauma, and PTSD. While working out at the gym isn’t a silver bullet, it will improve your mental clarity and self-image at a base level.
Don’t forget your mental wellness too. Meditation or journaling are effective ways to process your feelings when recovering from a breakup.
If you’re new to working out, meditating, or eating healthy, it’s totally okay. Focus on taking small steps each day that promote behavioral changes over time. For example, instead of saying that you’ll run a 5K next month, set a goal of running for 2 hours per week. When you feel comfortable, increase your run time and inch closer to your goal.
4. Find Time to Foster New Friendships
You shouldn’t feel pressured to put yourself back out into the dating field, but it’s still critical to seek out new, meaningful relationships in your life. If connecting with others in a bar or restaurant is difficult—or in a time of Covid-19, a risk to your health—there are various tech-focused options to help you create connections with others.
Bumble, the popular dating app, even offers “Bumble BFF” to its users. Swipers search through a database of other individuals seeking friendships, not relationships, and can begin the conversation over the phone before meeting up in person.
5. Be Kind to Yourself
While the saying might be cliche, it still rings true: it’s okay not to be okay. Some days will be better than others, and that’s completely normal. Don’t be too hard on yourself—recovering from a breakup isn’t easy!
Take it day-by-day, build your support network, and focus on your future. You’ll be surprised how much growth and happiness can come from one of life’s many pivots. You’ve got this!