With February famously known as the month of romantic love, we thought it would be important to touch on self-love, more particularly after experiencing a breakup. When we talk about self-love, we mean it as a form of expressing appreciation and gratitude toward oneself that can further improve a person's psychological, spiritual, and physical well-being. However, during relationships, people tend to prioritize their partner's needs over their own, and although this seems nice it can be extremely difficult to know what to do with these loving emotions when there is no one to direct them towards.
To help produce a sense of equilibrium here is a list of rituals to practice promoting more self-love, especially when grieving a relationship.
Talk To a Reliable Support System
It is super important to verbalize how experiencing something exceptionally saddening makes you feel. If you have one friend or a group who you know will always be there for you in times of hardship, this is where you would want to hold them the closest. Although it may seem comforting to isolate yourself from everything and everyone in your life, in the long run, it might make you feel lonelier and more discomforted than if you were to be surrounded by those who care about you. Yes, it is important to have your alone time, just ensure you are not consistently dealing with the grief alone. Consistently talking with a support system can help alleviate any internalized thoughts and feelings by putting them out into the open and having someone listen to you. From there, seeking professional assistance to accept and cope with the loss of a relationship is always recommended, especially if you feel as if you do not have a personal support system.
Be Compassionate with Yourself
In order to promote self-love after going through a breakup it is crucial to show yourself compassion. Self-compassion is defined as treating yourself with kindness and understanding, just as you would with any other person you care about (Neff, 2022). Although it is vital to use self-compassion in everyday rituals, it is more important to express it when experiencing hardships. Ensuring that you are extra patient and providing yourself with extra tenderness will make the healing process more efficient. Providing yourself will extra care allows you to take control of directing the additional feelings of love toward yourself rather than someone who is no longer in your life.
Prioritize Your Needs
When engaged in committed relationships people tend to put the needs of their partner over their own, which can lead to some long-term complications. These complications include not seeing you and your partner as equals, insufficiently communicating needs, and possibly burnout. Prioritizing your wants and needs during this time of independence grants you the ability to create healthier relationships with not only future romantic partners but also the relationship with yourself. Focusing on oneself can look like a variety of different things, like partaking in health-related activities, finding new crafty hobbies, or going out dancing.
It is also strongly recommended to practice mindfulness. Mindfulness is the practice of meditation with the intention of becoming aware of what you are feeling during the present moment. The practice is known for alleviating stress, tension, depression, and a host of other ailments, as it can provide space for individuals to focus on their psychological needs when presented with challenges. Engaging in mindfulness grants individuals the chance to fully commit to anything they feel requires work, whether it be breathing deeper, becoming more self-aware, or learning to be more grounded in everyday life.
Coming to terms with the ending of a relationship is an extremely challenging component to overcome but it can be the most crucial. Accepting the loss of a romantic relationship takes time, and it is OK to provide that time of grievance, but it is important to understand that staying in this place of heartbreak for too long can be unhealthy. Not allowing yourself to accept the end of a relationship makes it difficult to be open to new and exciting possibilities, not just regarding future relationships but also work-related opportunities and saying yes to adventures. Acceptance can also look like feeling emotions fully through when they present themselves. There would be a range of emotions to arise when experiencing a breakup, such as sadness, anger, guilt, shame, and a list of others. However, what is important is accepting these emotions and feeling them. It is advised to not avoid or ignore them because they will reappear stronger. Sitting with all emotions when they arise can make the healing journey challenging, but it is more important to allow yourself to feel massive emotions than to repress them and pretend you are unaffected by something as hard as a breakup.
How To Keep It Going
Healing through heartbreak can take time and it is important to give yourself that time. Hopefully, by talking to a reliable support system you feel empowered to walk yourself through the various steps listed here to make the healing processes faster and easier. If you need to generate a reliable support system, it can also be worthwhile contacting a licensed therapist. We have a variety of sources to fit the needs of everyone including individual therapy for anxiety and/or depression, virtual therapy, and low-cost counselling. To get in touch with our admin team to make an appointment, contact us by phone at (226) 894-4112 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Neff, K. (2022, September 23). Compassion. Self. Retrieved February 15, 2023, from https://self-compassion.org/