A broken heart is devastating. The break is never even and there is always one person who put in a little bit more (or a lot more) effort and came out with a negative return on investment, either way both parties normally hurt and it can be difficult to get through.
Personally, I’ve experienced a lot of breakups. Normally from long term relationships and I tend to be the one getting broken up with than the one actually doing the breaking up. I’ve handled every single breakup differently. Some went so poorly. Others weren’t crazy bad but after my last breakup I think I’ve finally found the secret to breaking through my breakup.
Let me give you some context to start. I dated a guy for six and a half years. We met in undergrad moved together so he could go to dental school while I was in grad school. I then moved to Chicago for a job while he finished up school. We then moved back to Florida. I was traveling back and forth to Chicago for work and about 2 months later he broke up with me over the telephone. I felt disrespected, betrayed, unloved, and a million other negative emotions. I moved into my new apartment with the suitcase I had with me and when I went to go get the rest of my stuff in Florida all of it was already piled in the front room of what used to be “our home”. Our neighbor came over to let me know my ex had been seeing someone and she had been there every night since we broke up. At that moment I decided I truly had nothing left to lose. I packed up what I could fit in my car and drove myself back to Chicago.
During the drive back I promised myself I wasn’t going to let this be like the other breakups. He wasn’t going to break me, this was not the end for me, and instead of feeling sad I felt a sense of relief. I no longer had to do things for him, I no longer had to participate in things I didn’t enjoy, I didn’t have to hang out or be around people I didn’t want to be around, I didn’t have to act a certain way or believe certain things, I could literally do whatever I wanted. I was free.
From that point forward I did a lot of things that completely changed my life. Here are some of the core teachings that not only got me through my last breakup but also helped me revamp my life into the one I’ve always dreamt of.
1. Be Selfish:
Believe me, I know it might sound weird at first, but bear with me for a few more moments. The first thing I did to take back control and live the life I wanted to live was to be, well, selfish. I mean we are talking truly innovative levels of selfish here. It was INVIGORATING. I began to discover who I truly was. This is why being selfish is important, because discovering who you are and what YOU enjoy is a lot harder to do when you are continually putting yourself second; and in order to truly be happy in this life you must unlock the happiness sealed within. For example, I was always wanting to go travel and explore. My ex would literally have every excuse in the books not to go on vacation with me. Finally when we split up I didn’t have to wait around or clear anything with him. These limiting beliefs that no longer existed allowed me the freedom to travel anywhere, anytime. These travels ultimately led me to identify and understand what I want to do with the rest of my life, something I would have never even thought to be an option until traveling to these new places and going through some of the craziest, scariest, and most fun experiences of my life. Now I’m not telling you to go around slapping babies, I’m not even suggesting for you to be rude to others. This type of selfish doesn’t surface, no this type of selfish only exists inside of you. Chase your goals, do the things you want to do, live the life you want to live and don’t let others dictate who you are or want to be.
2. Be Active & Avoid Alcohol:
BE ACTIVE, oh my goodness. I seriously cannot emphasize this enough. I don’t care what kind of activity you enjoy, walking, running, soccer, weight lifting, whatever it is get up and move! Not only do you get extra endorphins which is your own personal happy drug but when your body feels and looks good, you feel good mentally. Personally I took up weight lifting which had been a hobby prior to my breakup but I took it to a completely new level after the breakup. It was a great short term goal to work towards and conquer, making me feel proud and accomplished in a world that seemed completely shattered at the time.
Something else that plays into the active piece that I feel like I need to talk about is alcohol consumption. I didn’t drink for a long time after this breakup. In previous breakups I was told “go grab a drink!” and all that ever resulted in was me drunk messaging/calling my ex and making super shitty decisions that made me feel bad about myself mentally and physically the next day. If you don’t want to give it up all together try not drinking on weeknights and just see how you feel.
3. Shed What’s Holding You Down:
Warning: If you’re like me you probably invested way more time and energy than you should have into your relationship. Picked up hobbies and goals that aren’t your own. I took up football, my ex would spend a ridiculous amount of hours and money on fantasy sports. I was absorbed into it because that was the only way I’d get to hang out with him on a Sunday. To be honest I totally thought I was into it and loved it until the first season after our breakup I noticed I didn’t watch a single football game. I spent my Sundays outside, exploring, adventuring, building my career, and spending time with universe loving hippies that have forever changed my life. Who knew that was me?!
I had so many people wide eyed and scared for me when I told them I was going to start modeling. I still have people urge me to not do the things I do to reach my end goal. Sadly, these individuals are often times the people closest to you. Please know that they feel this way for one of two reasons. (1) They have been convincing themselves as to why they shouldn’t go do the same exact thing you’re attempting to actually do. (2) They love you so much they believe they are truly looking out for you and really don’t want to see you get hurt.
When you start being selfish you’ll find that you’re placing yourself in situations to find likeminded people where you will build a community of friends who are like you and love doing the same stuff you do! Building this community will make it easier for you to shed the friends/family that don’t support your new lifestyle. For me the first community I built was my “FitFam” made up of my wonderful trainer Shawn and all the other trainers at the gym I went too. The majority of them had similar goals around fitness which helped me be around people who supported my short term goal which eventually led to my long term goals. They made the journey to my goal supportive and fun.
I’m sorry to say but you have to start limiting or cutting those people out of your life who are either filled with negative energy or do not support your new and improved life. I lost one of my very best friends through this. When I explained to her that my ex had broken up with me she found a way to make it about herself. That was the last straw for me in that relationship. I was at a point I had nothing to give. I needed to be selfish and just cut that tie. I felt like I was consistently giving her my energy and receiving nothing in return. Another example of this is one my closest family members. I was told I was going through a phase and that I’m living a fairytale. When that conversation was done I was questioning myself, and felt terrible. I was asking myself, am I making a mistake? I had to limit the amount of time I spent talking to that individual. I love them and they mean the world to me but I know they are looking out for me and this new me is a completely different person than I was 6 years earlier.
Ultimately, if you have made a decision to go for it, you’re gold. You can absolutely do it no matter how crazy it sounds. If people are telling you otherwise, or if you feel like shit, or start questioning yourself after being around someone, let them go. Let them live their life and believe what they want to believe and you do you!
4. Upgrade Your Environment
If you can walk into your house and love it, I promise it makes you a happier person. I literally look forward to being in Chicago at home because I feel like my place is nicer than 75% of the hotels I stay in.
My experience with this was kind of extreme. I had already moved all my stuff to Florida. My ex and I had consolidated everything and most of my stuff was given away therefore when I went to go pick up my stuff I didn’t really have a lot and what I did have I didn’t even want at that point. Starting completely over was one of the most refreshing parts of my breakup. I don’t have anything I ever shared with my ex in my apartment and it’s beautiful.
You don’t need to be this extreme however I do recommend starting from scratch if at all possible. If you’re worried about finances I would see if your ex would just pay you for the stuff they want to keep (probably not likely but it never hurts to ask). And if you aren’t moving into a new place, give your place a makeover. Hang up inspiring quotes, frame some old calendar pictures, create a vision board and hang it in your room, get some fresh flowers, do anything that makes your place feel new and improved, just like you!
EXPLORE, ADVENTURE, TRY NEW THINGS. Try to go to new places. Seeing and experiencing new things that didn’t bring up old memories was a great way to build new memories with new people. I hadn’t really explored the world yet and this just opened my life up to so many possibilities. Remember, just because things didn’t work out the way you wanted doesn’t mean your future won’t be better than you ever imagined. Since my breakup I’ve traveled to at least 10 new places. One of my favorite trips was to Denver with my best friend Danika. We spent a day on The Rockies that changed my life forever. Another great adventure was during Thanksgiving break where I went to Utah with Matthew whom I had met three weeks prior where he had to pretty much push me up Angel’s Landing. The last one I’ll talk about was a last minute drive up to North Hampton Beach in New Hampshire. I’m addicted to the ocean and we spent some time driving along the coast and taking pictures on the beach. One of my favorite days!
Meditation helped me so much throughout my breakup. I’ll write a blog on this topic soon but the short version is meditate so you can soak in the universe and positive light that will energize you to function on a higher frequency and vibration to manifest everything you want in this world. Just try it, what do you have to lose? Don’t feel like you know what you’re doing? My bestie Christine recommended Abraham Hicks to me and now it’s my favorite guided meditation. Check. It. Out.
7. Forgive & Let Go
This is the hardest part and it will take time. The easiest way for me to explain how I approached this was I would think about my ex as a child. In my mind at the time what my ex had done was impulsive and foolish. He was acting out of fear and made a lot of poor decisions and just didn’t know any better. This helped me have a sense of compassion for him.
Eventually I listened to a podcast that explained to me that forgiveness is to stop feeling anger or resentment towards another. So if I wanted to stop feeling anger and resentment I needed to change my thoughts. I changed my thoughts from, “what my ex did to me was wrong, breaking up with me over the phone was wrong, being with another girl immediately after in our home was wrong.” TO “who am I to judge what is right and wrong? CLEARLY what had happened was meant to be.” My life is ten times better than the life I lived back then. I don’t feel sad or anxious. I don’t sit up waiting all night for a call. My life is so full of love and joy. Ultimately, as soon as I stopped qualifying things as right or wrong I had the power to forgive. It cleared my mind and help me have a better understanding and see his perspective. What if that girl is his soulmate, what if they are completely meant for each other and she makes him the happiest human being on the planet? Who am I to stand in the way of that? Who am I to say what they did was wrong?
I’d like to sum this long blog up by saying this breakup was really difficult for me. I still think about the life I had and of course my dog Lucy but I’m so glad I went through it. I’m such a stronger person because of it, more productive, and just happier all around. I’m sure my ex is too and that is what the world needs. Happy, loving people.
You are an amazing person and please remember that everything that is happening right now is happening FOR YOU. It is supposed to happen and you’re experiencing it for a reason. Just because your past didn’t turn out the way you wanted doesn’t mean it can’t be better than you ever imagined. Unlock your own happiness and you will have all the power in the world. You don’t need someone else to be happy, I promise, you’re enough.
With love and positive vibes,
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