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The classic line “breaking up is hard to do” is undoubtedly correct.
I have been through many breakups, and I remember being so engrossed in my pain, that I forgot to eat and drink. I have vivid images of all my breakups, followed by the intense suffering that stemmed from them.
In my estimation, we tend to make significant mistakes after breaking up that only prolong the severity of our suffering. We basically become abrasive and irreverent. Additionally, we think happiness and peace are elusive.
When we are devastated, we get plenty of “life goes on” talks. It is true, though—we mustn’t dwell, for life really does continue on. And if we don’t move on and focus on what will terminate our grief—we indirectly elevate it.
Below are five things that will only elevate our misery (if we don’t stop doing them):
1. Avoid lamenting. Negative emotions will surface during and after a breakup. What we typically do is avoid the misery that we are prone to face. I think we fear becoming weak—I was someone who would not allow herself to cry. I constantly tried to convince myself that I am strong and independent—that no relationship can bring me down.
Retaining the pain inside caused plenty of emotional outbursts. Once every few days I’d go through explosions of negative feelings. Thus, I learned that to avoid lamenting is damaging.
We should realize that it is absolutely okay to experience negativity every once in a while. We should cry, scream and do every other thing that helps with the releasing of the inner pain, or else we will accumulate emotions that will resurface in no time.
2. Rewind what happened. After breaking up, we tend to mentally go back in time and reexamine tiny details in the relationship. We hope to catch events or triggers that caused the break up.
Looking back, I remember the sleepless nights I had when faced when a relationship was ending. I suffered from severe headaches due to overthinking. After many breakups, and a whole bunch of nonsense thoughts, I realized that mentally going back to the past never helped me figure out anything. What I depicted were only projections of my own mind and what I knew back then.
The biggest lesson of all is that time reveals everything. Sometimes it took me years to know the truth—but I eventually did. Looking back, I laugh at myself when I recall all the intensity I put myself through.
3. Give ourselves a hard time. Wallowing in self-pity after a breakup is common. Not only do we give ourselves a hard time, but we also blame ourselves.
Well, it took me plenty of breakups to understand that there is no one to blame. During the breakup, we unconsciously go through “the victim” stage. We blame the other person and confidently proclaim that we no longer want him or her in our lives. However, once distance takes place, we indirectly flip the guilt towards ourselves.
As I have mentioned, I think that blaming ourselves or the other person is completely absurd. We must practice believing that nothing in this universe is within our control. Everything will eventually come to an end, and we should be aware enough to realize it.
4. Worry about the future. Worrying about the future is an innate compulsion in humans. Nevertheless, it is at its peak when we are confronted with an ending—especially breakups.
I personally lost count of the anxious thoughts that compulsively came to my mind. Primarily, I worried whether the relationship will be reconciled or not. Additionally, I worried about the fact that this person will stop loving me. In conclusion, I had many obsessive thoughts that make no sense to me now.
When we think too much, we unintentionally believe that we can change something—or figure out some sort of clue. But thinking only brings about more thinking. With time, it becomes destructive to an extent of obscuring reality. However, if we relax and let things flow, we will realize later that everything is falling into its right place. Despite the fact that sometimes events take a different turn that we’d like—they take this turn for a certain reason that benefits us.
5. Hate. To start, hate is illusionary. This so-called emotion emanates from the negativity of our minds. It cannot be felt unless it is strongly supported with loathing thoughts.
I truly believe that we get what we give in this life. A Buddhist monk once told me, “Don’t expect to plant an apple tree and get mango fruits. If you want mango fruits, plant mango seeds.”
Hence, if you want love, spread out love. We can’t hate, yet expect to receive goodness.
Relationships end for viable reasons and every relationship that ended in our lives was not meant to stay. Therefore, it is absolutely pointless to hate someone when none of us are in control in this universe.
Breaking up doesn’t mean war—whether internally or with our partner. Breaking up simply means that the cycles of life are ongoing, and everything is eventually ending—if not by decision, then by death. However, if we feel that we can’t yet accept the notion of impermanence, then we must believe that something better is on its way to us.
Until that something better knocks our door, we should remember to stay kind. Do not place blame, and to stop worrying about the future! We are only tiny, flimsy specks in this universe. Let’s benefit from our creation instead of staying stuck in unfathomable events.
Let’s truly live.
Author: Elyane Youssef
Editor: Yoli Ramazzina
Photo: Flickr/Nicolas Raymond