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I’m married now, but I’ve had my fair share of heartbreak. Here are ten things I’ve learned about moving on from a broken heart – especially for you young dudes:
- Look ahead: whenever you are dealing with the emotional or financial impact of a breakup, you have to look ahead and not back. Sometimes we cannot see the problem clearly until we take a step back or talk with a friend about it. You have to learn to accept that things happen in life that are out of your control, and the only thing that you can change is how to react to them.
- Stop blaming yourself: the first thing you need to do is accept that things don’t always work out as we want them to. This doesn’t make you a failure or a lesser person. In fact, accepting your faults and correcting your errors in the future will help you become more confident and self-aware. It takes two to cause the breakdown of a relationship, and just because you were not able to make it work with one person, that might not be the case next time.
- Get a new perspective: sometimes you need to take a step back from the situation. Talk to your friends and listen to their stories instead of focusing on your situation. You might book a vacation in a new country to get away from it all. The more time you allow yourself to heal and stay away from your memories the better you will feel after.
- Focus on the present: it’s important that you don’t focus too much on the past or worry about the future. You can enroll in a mindfulness class online or seek therapy to learn how to manage negative thoughts. This way, you will acknowledge your feelings, but you are not allowing them to affect your present. Meditation and hypnosis can also help, and you should seek therapy if you experience extreme anxiety and depression.
- Learn from your mistakes: instead of feeling angry with yourself or your ex partner, it is important that you become a witness of your own self, and keep on improving your behavior, attitude, and self-esteem. Beating yourself up over what you did wrong will not make you a better person, but if you reflect on your behavior in a calm and collected manner you can avoid doing the same things again and again.
- Change your lifestyle: sometimes sticking with the old routines makes things worse. If you used to go out with your ex jogging every morning, avoid jogging at the same time, and go in the evening instead. Try new restaurants and foods, and take on new habits that will help you become a better person. Focus on mastering new skills instead of being stuck in your old habits. A lifestyle change can help you discover your hidden dreams and talents and feel better about yourself after the breakdown of a relationship, so you can move on more easily.
- Learn something new: if you need a helpful distraction, you might want to learn some new skills, or even go back to college. While you keep on challenging yourself, you can forget about the past, and focus on your future. Whatever you used to be interested in – such as unique stamps, old cars, or…randomly…the history of phone chatlines – you will have time to learn about it. With more time and less distraction, you can even start a new career or business.
- Take on a new hobby: to meet new people and connect with interesting individuals with the same interests as you, you may want to take on a new hobby. Whether you always wanted to write a novel or learn landscape painting, now’s the time! At the end of the day, any new hobby will help you discover your hidden talents and learn more about yourself than you knew before.
- It’s never easy: breakups are never easy, but the good news is that you can turn the situation to your advantage. Make the most out of the extra time, and do what you have been postponing in the past few years. It’s normal to feel sad or overwhelmed, but there are ways to feel your feelings, learn, and grow from them over time.
- Mindfulness can help: find helpful distractions, and learn to live in the present. Try mindfulness or cognitive behavioural therapy. Talk to your friends and work on being present. It takes time so don’t rush yourself. Just know that things always change.