Dealing with the mix of confusing emotions that all get caught up in a break-up — we have all been there. There’s anger, confusion, vulnerability, frustration, denial and even, at times, anxiety. And that’s not even mentioning the hurt and upset involved. And no matter how much our wonderful friends tell us these feelings are normal and that we are better off without them, this information does little to curb the raw emotions that are running through our bodies 24/7.
So what can we do about it? Well, thankfully, there are things you can do to help you move on and downscale the severity of the emotions you are experiencing. Thanks to the amazing research shared with us by our relationship Guru’s, here are some insights into finally getting over that ex of yours.
Often, the hardest part of getting over an ex is letting go of the person as an attachment figure– i.e. a person whom you rely on for support and validation in your day-to-day life. Having people whom we can trust to be there for us is one of our vulnerabilities and most basic needs as human beings. But because these relationships tend to be so close and intimate, most people have only a handful of attachment-based relationships. Also, many people have what we call a primary attachment figure, which basically refers to a person whom they are more likely to rely on than others. And for people in romantic relationships, the same primary attachment figure tends to be the romantic partner, as well.
Romantic partners generally make great attachment figures because romantic relationships tend to involve so much intimacy, closeness, and interdependence. Given the tremendous strength of these attachment bonds, you can see why they can be difficult to let go of, even if a person knows that they do not want to be with their romantic partner anymore.
If you are still experiencing attachment-related issues with your ex, like you feel as though you want to tell them news or ask for their help and advice with big life challenges, then it’s time to select a close friend or family member who will take on that role for you. Think about what you are in need of: is it compassion? Perhaps some direct advice, or maybe even some emotional stability.
Once you have clearly and honestly identified your needs, you will then be able to select someone else in your life who has the skills and ability to fulfill these needs. If you do this, you will then avoid those moments of loneliness and longing for the past, as you aren’t allowing yourself to need them any longer. You will also be reminding yourself that your ex is not the only person in your life whom you can rely on, and that you’ll find yourself needing them less and less.
After a break up and when you are feeling down in the dumps, this is the time you kick into overdrive with some self-love and appreciation. No more telling yourself that you aren’t good enough, or could have done better. For the next few weeks, you need to give yourself constant praise! Allow yourself to do all the things YOU like to do! Perhaps treat yourself to a pamper beauty session! Be good to your body with some healthy eating habits and exercise, and most importantly, make sure that the voice within says nothing but positive and kind things to you!
If you want to start feeling better about yourself, it starts here with you! To begin with, it will feel unnatural because your natural instinct is to feel sad at this challenging time. But after some time, the emotions will catch up with your actions and eventually you will be feeling a whole heap better from all that self-love you’ll be showing yourself.
It can feel quite heartless or dramatic to clear away all the things that remind you of your ex. However, this is a crucial part of the recovery period. It is almost impossible to start moving on, when you have constant reminders round you that unintentionally initiate thoughts of the ex. These thoughts are normally unwelcome and catch us at times when we are most vulnerable. Sadly, there is no good that can come from having these reminders around us.
Once you have cleared these objects away, you will feel a sense of relief—we promise. And here is the best part: by creating more space in your surroundings, you will now be able to invite wanted people and thoughts into your life, instead of the unwanted thoughts of those that are in the past and should not haunt your present.