Being in love with someone who you can’t be with anymore will be the worst all time nightmare for many of us. Our brains will start creating fairytale stories in which forever is supposed to last forever and anything different than that is just inadequate to the standards we’ve been taught. In this process we can even realize how much of ourselves we gave for the other person to the point we don’t even know what makes us special anymore, and then after the struggle when we finally decide to move on we realize how big of an opportunity it was for self-reaffirmation and not giving up our identities for anything once again. As said, the process is long and quite tedious but here are some tips you can follow to make it easier, each of them given from personal experience and tested during rough times.
1. Watch horror movies.
There’s a concept in hypnosis called the pattern interrupt, it’s used for inducing the hypnotic state and involves overloading someone’s mind with information and then giving them something unexpected that overloads the brain and changes its focus. That something unexpected is pretty similar to those screamers in horror movies, you don’t have to be an aficionado of the horror genre to get scared by those silly screamers. While you are watching this scenes your brain will focus on nothing else and you will start teaching your brain to not be thinking of that person all the time. This is even better if you are the kind of person who gets scared easily with such stuff, you’ll replace your heartbreak with an irrelevant fear for a while.
2. Take a bath.
Take a bath or shower when you feel the least like doing it. During these days it’s quite common that you stop caring for yourself and it’s not fair to start leaving basic personal care, you deserve it. Fighting the aches of the heart is way easier while looking like a heartbreak. It has also happened endless times to me that I feel like days are pretty much over and don’t have the power to do anything else, then I take a bath and a couple hours later I’m out with people and thinking to myself “Damn, I almost believed this day wasn’t gonna be worth it but here I am having fun once again”.
3. Meet new people.
If you’re feeling like you lost some of your identity in the process this is a great thing for building something new. I’m quite surprised by the number of people who are unaware of meetup groups, even more, because they are a great opportunity for finding people you like. On Facebook, you can find groups for drinks on Friday nights, for people who run blogs, language learning, hiking, etc. There are tons of them, I now regularly frequent them but I know it can be scary in the beginning to go by yourself to a meetup of random people you don’t know but don’t worry, it’s just the idea you have about it that scares you, those groups are usually full of friendly people also looking to make new contacts or even friends, there might be some regulars but also newbies. I, however, don’t recommend going there with someone else because you’ll start rejecting new contacts and will stick to your friend pretty much.
4. Find a new hobby.
Think about something that gets you completely obsessed. It was during a heartbreak that someone gave me some watercolors as a gift. They said they realized when I was painting I became a full perfectionist and didn’t focus on anything else, then I realized it was true and it was a really healthy habit for leaving irrelevant but sentimentally loaded thoughts aside. There are many things that get me obsessed like that, typing tests, video games, impulsive writing, crafts, baking, but think about what get’s you in that mood. It doesn’t have to be something you want to do at the moment, but something you know you won’t be able to stop once you get started.
5. Give yourself the right to be angry (not sad).
Don’t punish yourself all the time thinking it was your fault. Anger is the second stage of grief and it’s when things start moving after denial. Think about the mistakes the other person did, it’s not selfish, you also have the right to get upset by things. Nobody is perfect and there’s nothing wrong with that, but it’s better to be aware of those flaws from the beginning because it’s usually overidealizing people what hurts us in the end. But now it’s over and you have the right to be angry. Just don’t feel the impulse to contact that person and complain about what they did to you, you want to move on without them so use your anger wisely.
6. Don’t drink.
Alcohol is a depressor. One night on my way home I realized I was feeling deeply sad but couldn’t find the reason for it, everything was completely fine in my life. Then I realized how silly I was by thinking alcohol didn’t have its depressor effect on me. We all know that drunk friend who ends up crying about a past love like crazy and they don’t even seem to realize how much of a scene they are making, we all suffer from those effects after drinking just at different levels. I believe alcohol doesn’t make you sad about past loves, but the feeling is so similar when you mind kind find a reason for the sadness it just relates it to those experiences automatically. If you decide to drink anyway just keep in mind that the side effect sadness is nothing more than an illusion, don’t prioritize it, you’ll feel better next day.