First it must be said that it is possible to experience heartbreak without actually breaking up. A lot of people live in a state of perpetual heartbreak even though they are still technically in a relationship. But when this is the case, the “break up” has still occurred. It has occurred internally. To love someone, is to include them as yourself. It is to come into a state of emotional oneness with that person. This feels like bliss. We are at our very best when we are in this state. In this state, we are essentially the emotional embodiment of source itself. In contrast, to break up is to become separated. This feels like torture. We are at our worst in this state. In this state, we are the emotional embodiment of the absence of source itself. All break ups are essentially a betrayal. A betrayal is the breaking of a presumptive contract or agreement. When we love someone, we enter into a kind of energetic agreement or loose contract to be one. When we experience a break up, whether it is an actual break up or an energetic break up this agreement is broken. As a result, we feel betrayed. All betrayals of the unspoken oneness agreement in a relationship (whether it is emotional withdrawal or cheating or criticism) creates a separation between two people. So why exactly are break ups so painful? Because if you include someone as you, to break up with them (regardless of whether you decided to break up with them or they decided to break up with you) is to lose part of yourself. On an emotional level, this feels like a severing. It feels like part of you is being severed from yourself.
Hatred is the cover emotion for hurt. What I mean by cover emotion is that your emotional self is intact with survival mechanisms just like your physical self is. When you are feeling hurt, your emotional self immediately tries to get you away from the feeling of hurt by moving you into a space of hatred, which is actually a vibrational improvement. This is why it is so common for two people to hate one another after they breakup. The hatred however is not what needs to be addressed, the hurt underneath the hatred does.
The heart chakra is the energy center of the body that corresponds to connection. It is the chakra that is concerned with wholeness and love and compassion among other things. The hear chakra is the unifier. This is why so many of the organs and biological systems associated with the hear chakra, are unifying systems like the circulatory system. They unify the whole body. When we experience the severing or separation inherent in a break up, the chakra and biological systems associated with it that is the most impacted, is the chakra that is in charge of connection, the hear chakra. On a biological level, emotional pain and physical pain involves the same regions of the brain. Many scientists suggest that when painful mental and emotional separation occurs between people, it causes an area of the brain to be stimulated that in turn over stimulates a nerve called the Vagus nerve, causing pain in the chest. This chest pain is why people say their hart has been broken. It is easy to see how the pain receptors in the body that would be the most effected by a loss trauma, are the nerves associated with the chakra and biological systems that deal with connection. That is after all, where the damage is.
I’m going to let some of you off the hook here before we go on. It is a very common thing that when our relationships go very south, to begin to wish that our partner will just die in an accident or something. The reason for this is that all break ups are a death of part of you. And when we do not feel like we have the strength to voluntarily create a death, we hope that it will involuntarily happen. That way, we do not have to face the guilt, we don’t have to doubt ourselves and we do not have to feel self-blame on top of the pain of the loss. Breakups are so painful because you have chosen to kill something that is a part of you. Even if it was the other person who chose to do it, you are going to experience a death of something that is a part of you. What ensues is a grieving process, much like the one that happens when someone we love actually dies.
You’re not just going to “get over” heartbreak. A break up is a trauma to the system and so the system has to go through a process of healing and integrating and readjusting when it loses a part of itself. You may decide to move on, but that does not mean you have healed anything. Trying to rush the process of healing after you experience a break up, does not work any more than it works to rush the process of grieving after someone dies. That being said, heartache does not have to last for weeks or months and the more active you are with regards to facing your thoughts and feelings and the more proactive you are about your own healing, the faster you will reach a state of wholeness.
So what should you do if you are suffering from a broken heart?
Before we get into it, it's important that if heartbreak is recent and you're in the wake of a major trauma, to reel it in and stop living your life for this day or week. instead, you have to plan your life in short increments. You have to think about what would make you feel better for the next five minutes or what would you do to feel a bit of relief in the next hour. Live your life minute by minute or hour by hour and only extend that as time goes on and you feel capable. And now for the list:
- Do not try to distract yourself from the heartbreak. A lot of your friends might suggest this. It is a bad idea. This will backfire immensely. This is you leaving or bouncing out on yourself after you have already lost part of yourself. It will only compound the injury. Heartbreak is all consuming and it’s ok to let it be. Sometimes, to get to the other side of something, we have to go straight into it.
- Recognize that if you have come together with someone so as to become attached to them in a partnership, you have most likely subconsciously done so in order to make yourself feel more whole in some way. This means there are aspects of yourself that are feeling insufficient, incomplete, empty or missing. We must embark on a journey of restoring our completeness in and of ourselves. We must turn our attention inward and become whole again. Do not mistake this for independence. This is an interdependent universe. Interdependence is not painful. Independence is. Autonomy on the other hand is a state of wholeness in and of the self. In a state of wholeness, we do not come together with other people to make up for what is missing within us. To be autonomous, we have to be in a secure relationship with ourselves. We have to take steps to establish a secure relationship with ourselves and become whole. The worst thing we could do if we are feeling heartbreak is to get into another relationship. This will be especially hard if you’re afraid to be alone. I’m developing a process that called the Completion Process that is designed to restore us to a state of wholeness. Hopefully by the time you watch this, I will be done with the process and you can incorporate it into your life. Part of becoming whole is coming back to yourself and finding yourself again. Who am I? What do I want? What do I need? What changes do I want to make to my life? Think back to a time when you were truly happy in an autonomous way in your life. What things were you doing then? Add some of those things back into your life. Often break ups call for starting over as if from square one and going in a whole new direction. Our priorities have to shift. We have to be willing to do that. We have to take steps to feel like ourselves again because we have lost ourselves. Even the people who decide to end relationships go through a period of feeling lost without the other person. If you are feeling lost, you can look up my YouTube video titled “Feeling Lost and Ten Steps to Becoming Found.”
- Change up your life so it feels new. This might be as drastic as moving to a new city or house or it may be as simple as re-decorating or moving the furniture around or cooking new foods or changing something about your physical appearance. Changing things in your life around, especially the things that remind you of the pain of the loss is crucial. Don’t be afraid to put away the reminders you have of them. This may feel scary because you don’t want to lose any more connection to them. But remind yourself; you’re not getting rid of the reminder (unless you need to do that to let go). You’re just boxing it up so it’s out of sight. You can still take it out anytime you want to, or throw it away if/when the time ever feels right
- We have to address the negative thoughts like core beliefs and worries that have developed as a result of the pain of the heartbreak. Things like “I’m never going to trust anyone ever again.” Or “I can’t make relationships work” etc. We especially want to address and shift the “shoulds”. Something that causes us extreme pain in breakups is the fact that we think it should have gone differently. We think something has gone wrong in order for us to be where we are. For example, it’s common to think that if we were married, we obviously should have spent the rest of our lives together. When we think we should have spent the rest of our lives together, but we aren’t spending the rest of our lives together, we feel pain. So identify the painful beliefs you have right now that are adding to the heartbreak and take a look at my YouTube video titled “How to Change a Belief”. Also look into Byron Katie’s process called “The Work”.
- Ask Why. A lot of people who coach about heartbreak will tell you not to ask why. I could not disagree more. It is critical that we learn from each experience we have in life. Whilst maintaining the understanding that there is a much more beautiful and positive big picture behind why it ultimately happened, it is crucial that we develop awareness. This will also help us to uncover patterns within us so we can stop repeating them. Even when we say we do not know why, we usually always do know why. We just have to admit it to ourselves.
- People come in and out of our lives for a reason. We may be telling ourselves the story that they came into our lives for one reason (like because they are our soul mate) when in fact; they came into our lives for a whole other reason. Stay open to the idea that they have come to give you part of the puzzle and begin to look for what part or parts of the puzzle they may have come to give you. It is very tempting when we feel heartbroken to feel like the world is against us. Looking for the positive things that came as a result of the relationship, including what the relationship caused you to know that you want is a great way to get out of the feeling that you have been nothing but harmed.
- Sit down and figure out what is RIGHT with you. When we experience a break up, usually our self worth tanks along with it and adds to the heartbreak. We tend to immediately begin to think about what is wrong about ourselves. For example, if we broke up with someone, we might be thinking that something is wrong with us because we can’t make a relationship last long term. On the other hand, if someone broke up with us, we might be thinking that something is wrong with us because obviously if we were worth something, they would have loved us enough to stay with us. We have to shift our focus to our strengths and the things that make us worth connecting with. If you need help figuring it out, call on your friends and ask them each to compile a list. Or take strengths tests on the internet. Then figure out how each positive aspect of you has helped you and will help you in your life. And figure out how each aspect may be something that would benefit other people in a way that they would want to be with you.
- Feel the support and connection of others in your life. Allow community into your life. When we are feeling heartbreak, we feel it because we experienced a disconnection. This is a perfect time to work on receiving energy. If you’re having trouble with receiving, watch my YouTube video titled “How To Receive”. Connecting with others will also help you to feel like you are not alone so anxiety is less likely to be triggered. You may not feel capable of connecting with people in the state of pain that you’re in. But it will help you. Because you are suffering from the absence of someone, having the presence of someone does help improve the situation.
- Think about the best-case scenario. When we suffer a heartbreak we usually go to the worst case scenario. Where would you be in a year from now, in the best-case scenario? Where would you live? Who would be there? What would your career look like? The more detailed you can get the better. Ultimately everything does happen for the highest good even when we cannot see it. And the reality is, when the door closed to the relationship you are grieving, another opened, potentially for the very future you’ve always dreamed about.
- Let yourself cry when you feel the urge to cry. Suppression is the opposite of healing. Crying may feel embarrassing. Get over the social stigma and let it out. You will not regret it. Release the pent up tension and the pent up emotions through your tears.
- Relax your body. Relaxing your body, relaxes the mind. Relaxing your mind relaxes the body; it’s a two way street. When we have experienced a break up, it is very hard to relax our mind, so we can approach relaxation instead on a physical level. The physically painful sensations in our body occur when our nerves are stimulated by stress hormones. We need to take whatever steps we can to get our body to a state of ease. This means, put on a song that positively alters the way you feel or get a massage or do yoga or exercise or paint or sculpt or have someone lightly brush your skin with their fingertips or buy a compression vest or do breathing exercises specifically for stress or take an Epsom salt bath. Do anything that would bring your body into a state of ease.
- Meditate daily. Meditation allows the mind to release its thoughts. This is critical during a break up. It also connects us with source perspective, i.e. the bigger picture. We come into a state of allowing, which is the most healing of all states.
- Write in your Gratitude and/or positive focus journal. When we experience a heartbreak, it is almost like the world has turned black. We feel terrible because we can’t see anything but the negative. So every morning and every night, we need to write a page in our gratitude journal or our positive aspects journal. This is a list of literally anything that you appreciate or that causes you to feel gratitude or that feels good to think about or look at or experience. When you are in emotional pain, it is best to think small. Write down the tiny things that you appreciate cause most likely the big things aren’t going so good right now. And be honest. You can only put things on this list that genuinely feel good to put down. Not things you think should make you feel good to put down. When we do this before bed, our sleep will be better and we will wake up in the same vibration we went to sleep in; which is improved. When we wake up and do this, we set the stage for the rest of the day. This is really important if we are going through heartbreak because when we are heartbroken, we usually wake up and the heartache hits us like a semi truck again and the rest of the day we spend just trying to cope and stay alive instead of living.
- Practice the art of self-love. If you are going through heartbreak, someone telling you to love yourself feels the same as someone telling you that you will be alone for the rest of your life with no one to love you. This is not what it means. This universe operates according to the law of attraction. It is like a big mirror. So whatever vibration you hold, is reflected by the universe. This means the more love you send in your direction, the more people will come into your life who will also send love in your direction. Self hurt is what is behind self hate, so loving yourself will also prevent you from hurting yourself; which to add injury to injury, is a common side effect of heartbreak. I have written a book called “Shadows Before Dawn” which is all about how to love yourself. It is available as of May of 2015. So if you’d like to learn how to love yourself, pick up a copy of the book.
- We need to allow ourselves to gain closure. Ask yourself, what do I need right now that will help me to gain closure? Define the loose ends and things that linger which are preventing you from moving forward emotionally. Maybe you feel you need to apologize, maybe you feel like you need to ask why, maybe you need to find out how to avoid the same mistake in the future, maybe you need to give something you’ve been keeping away. Maybe you need to have a symbolic ceremony. Let yourself gain closure in whatever way you need to.
- Seek out therapy. There are many different kinds of therapy. Research and find the type that resonates the most with you. Some therapies deal entirely with broken relationships. If you have lost your secure attachment to someone because of a break up or betrayal, a therapist can serve as a secure attachment figure. This is in fact the main reason why therapy is so therapeutic. We need to be able to get help when we feel we need help and heartbreak is a valid reason to seek out help. Allow yourself to feel sorry for your loss. The people who stay stuck in heartbreak are usually the people who never fully let themselves grieve or feel sorry for the loss.
In reality, we are all made of the same energy. We are part of the same unified field of energy. So even if the circumstances and life arrangements change and even if we separate from someone physically, we cannot ever lose them. We cannot actually disconnect from someone, we can only create the illusion of doing so. Ultimately there is no coming and there is no going. You cannot lose your interconnectedness because it is the basis of all that is.
Pain is temporary. It doesn’t feel like it when you’re feeling pain, which is why pain is so excruciating. Embrace the pain as if it were a crying child. Your pain is not trying to hurt you, instead it is hurting and it needs you to help it.