Bouncing Back From A Break-UP

Relationships can be satisfying and rewarding, especially when strong emotional and physical connections develop.  Unfortunately, these aspects of attachment can make the end of a relationship painful and challenging. Break-ups come with potential changes in our day-to-day activities and routines, emotional health, physical health, and social life.  The act of moving on with life may seem daunting and impossible for some of us after a break-up however there are some strategies we can incorporate into our lives that can promote growth and resilience during these difficult times.

  • Allow time and space to grieve.  The end of a relationship is a loss and should be experienced as such.  Healthy grieving involves feeling and experiencing each emotion that comes up as a result of the break-up and engaging in healthy coping skills such as journaling.
  • Lean on your support system.  In order to prevent isolation, reach out to friends and family on a regular basis who can listen and support you in ways that you need. 
  • Stick with your responsibilities. Just because a relationship ends, does not mean that our responsibilities also end. Continuing to follow through with regular tasks and routines can offer structure and promote positive feelings of accomplishment.
  • Establish a new normal. Think of this time as an opportunity to create a new life for yourself.  This is a time to be selfish in order to nurture your needs. Make plans that will you believe you can benefit from and consider participating in new hobbies or activities you may find enjoyable.     
  • Engage in regular self-care.  It can be challenging to remember to eat healthy, get enough sleep, and exercise when we are grieving or going through a transition however these activities of daily living are more crucial to attend to than any other time. 
  • Seek professional help. Receiving guidance and support from trained professionals in the mental health, medical, and legal settings can provide tools that we may not otherwise utilize on our own.  Professional help can provide objective support so that we are able to function and make sound decisions. 

Every relationship is different and each of us will experience a different reaction when going through a break-up.  However, regardless of the circumstances and our individual traits, we can all benefit when we take care of ourselves during loss and change.

~ Cory Stege, M.S., LMFT