Now before this blog goes any further… you probably reading this blog because you have recently had your heart broken or you have experienced it before, but your heart is still bleeding or you’re more bitter than vinegar mixed with crushed Panado. Trust this blog and learn from other’s mistakes – don’t go about breaking your heart the easy, vengeful, self-satisfying for two seconds and ugly way. Do it the classy way – you are worth it – Mabel-Eileen says so too.
#1 No Friends
At the start of the break-up, either one of you may say “let’s stay friends”. Don’t say it and don’t do it. This may seem easier at the time than saying goodbye to someone, but it isn’t. Do you really want to be around when he/she meets someone else? Hell, no! Even if you are completely over him/her – you’ll be hurt. And if you are both lonely at some stage you may get back together or “hook-up” for the wrong reasons. The risk is too great. Just cut the ties so that the healing process can begin.
#2 Don’t Seek Vengeance
It seems almost second nature for you to seek revenge and you may even have friends that encourage you to “harm” the other person because “they deserve it”. Revenge may satisfy you for a second but after that, you will feel guilt, remorse, frustration and anger. Don’t spread rumours, don’t play the victim and don’t spill your ex’s secrets to anyone and everyone with ears. You are better than that. And even if your ex, doesn’t extend you the same courtesy, just know by pretending you aren’t bothered and not responding to them, will irritate them way more than if you retaliate.
#3 Stop The Stalking
When the break-up is still fresh for days you will inevitably stalk your ex. See what their status is, who they are spending time with, analyse and dissect their profile pic and try to decrypt everything they post on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and the like. Just don’t do this. It’s inevitable you are going to see stuff that will hurt you and make you bleed. Take measures if you need be – block, de-friend, unfollow and ask your nosey friends to stop giving you updates about your ex. Even if it is “updates” about what a loser your ex is – your friends are not helping you to grieve and move on by giving you updates.
#4 Clampdown On The Binging
Having your heart broken can be so physically “flippen” painful. The pain you feel in your chest, the trouble breathing, the sadness you feel to your bones, the way you feel like the world can never seem beautiful again; the way you zombie through everything and the way you want to sleep and never wake up again. The pain is real.
So what most people do, is fill the void, self-medicate and over do it. They binge drink, eat, exercise, drug, smoke, starve themselves, sleep around, gamble, party, withdraw to the point of hermitism, or do something to the point of excess. All of which is an attempt to fill the void, numb the pain – or even inflict pain on themselves to feel something. But binging, or over-indulging (even in good things) can lead to further pain, disappointment and harm. Deal with your emotions, process them and go through the pain – even if it is difficult. It’s an opportunity to grow and develop. But stop that binging.
#5 Do Hobbies
What sometimes happens in relationships is the “I” becomes “we’s”. As in “we don’t eat pineapple on our pizza”, “we don’t believe in flu vaccines”, “we love to party” etc. And the “I” gets lost. So, you may find yourself questioning “who am I?” because your identity was so intertwined in being in the relationship that you completely lost yourself.
In response, stop and remember what you used to like and start there. Or think what the one thing is you always wanted to learn and then do it. Start horse riding again, start that blog you always wanted to, start dance classes, do fun walks, start cycling, do art classes, learn to play an instrument or learn another language. Start experimenting in the kitchen, take up colour pencil painting or volunteer at a charity.
Being single is the perfect place to get to know yourself and define yourself. Make the most of your time.
#6 Seek Help
No matter your friends’, family’s or colleagues’ beliefs, sometimes you need to seek professional help from a counsellor, psychologist or even a psychiatrist. Don’t advertise that you are doing this; the ignorance surrounding health care and in particular mental health care is absolutely staggering. But sometimes to process your emotions in a helpful, meaningful and constructive way you need professional assistance. The people close to you may not always feel they can be honest with you or they will enable negative thoughts or behaviours inadvertently. And it’s important that you heal fully before you can go on with your life. Seek help, don’t drown in unexpressed emotions. And ignore people that say therapy is for “other people” or “you just need to eat healthier and exercise more” or “you just need to snap out of it”.
#7 Stop Hating Love
This is a defence mechanism. You may feel like love rejected you, so you reject love in return. But hating love or hating people in love is not only ugly but people can see right through it. Even though it’s tough and painful when your heart is breaking to see happy couples in love or getting engaged and married, or experience Valentine’s Day – love is still beautiful in all of its forms, not just romantic. And if you stick it through and deal with your broken heart, before you know it, your love story will unfold (if that is what you want).
#8 Don’t Feel Like A Failure
Just because this relationship didn’t work out, doesn’t mean that no relationship will. Just because all your exes are married and living their happily-ever-afters, doesn’t mean that you are a failure. You are unique and special and that means so is your story. Don’t let anyone put pressure on you about your age, biological clock, societal norms of women/men – remind them that unfortunately divorce and cheating is also a norm in current society; so, perhaps being different is better.
You are not a failure.
#9 No To Shade
Don’t through shade online i.e. don’t make statuses or write blogs indirectly or directly taking stabs at your ex. In the age of Social Media, you have an array of temptations when it comes to “throwing shade”. And it is particularly difficult when your ex, owes you child support, but you see them “treating bae” on Social Media. Or if you see your ex, declaring their lifelong love for their current “stukkie” knowing full well they declared the same thing about you, a year ago. Be the better person. In the long run, it feels way better to vent into your pillow than the short-term gratification of venting about your ex online.
#10 Axe The Rebounds
Rebounds are a great way for you to prolong and amplify the suffering of heartbreak. Instant gratification from “friends with benefits” relationships and rebounds are short-lived and then you just feel empty, shameful, depressed and lonelier than ever. As tempting as it is to “move on” quicker than potent laxatives, especially if your ex is “sleeping around” or “serial dating”, don’t do it. And if you have entered into the rebound-and-recycle phase or other “casual” arrangements that are fragmenting your soul, just stop and start the healing process from a scratch.
#11 Discovery Period
Heartbreak is the perfect opportunity to deal with past hurt and rejection. It is the perfect place to discover your likes and dislikes and to learn who you are. If you don’t know where to start, start with the Myers-Briggs personality test (see the end of this article for some resources), or the Colour Test, or even fun tests like your mythical creature test.
Try new foods. Date yourself – make a yummy dinner for yourself, drink a glass of wine, take a bubble bath and eat your favourite dessert while watching your favourite movie. Read new books or series of books; visit and explore new places (even if it is five minutes away).
Host uplifting friends for a dinner, or low-key lunch. And evaluate who you are allowing in your life – consider axing people who belittle you or excessively criticise you, say goodbye to people that cause you to binge drink/sex/eat/drug or the like. Draw closer to the right type of people. Go back to church or attend for the first time (whatever this means to you in your context). And discover and celebrate the unique you …
#12 Don’t Forget To Live
On the opposite end of the spectrum from the serial dating and rebounding are the ladies and gents that hang around “waiting for the one”. Wherever, you find yourself on your journey don’t find yourself “just waiting” but actively “live your life”. Get hobbies, or dive into your current ones. Don’t focus on who has the privilege of dating you next but focus on how you can heal and grow into the person that is attractive to others (friends, family and potential better halves). Nothing is more attractive than a confident person living their life (and not reliving their past with a face of bitterness). And “just waiting” gives you way too much time to overthink rather than to have a healthy sense of reflection and introspection; plus overthinking can often lead to bitterness. And bitterness looks good on no one!
#13 Deal With It
“Denial”, “Anger”, “Bargaining”, “Depression” and “Acceptance” have been identified as the five stages of grief/bereavement (see article link below for more info). When you have your heart broken you go through a range of emotions, stages and phases. Make sure that while processing how you are feeling, you don’t get stuck in one phase so long that you never get to the acceptance phase. If need be, get help – don’t get stuck or start dating someone before going through all stages. Otherwise, you will find yourself punishing your current boyfriend/girlfriend for the previous one’s actions or you won’t stop talking about your ex – neither of which is fair or attractive.
#14 Forgive and Move On
The one thing you don’t want to do is hold onto unforgiveness. People often think that forgiving someone is “letting someone off the hook”. But actually, by not forgiving someone you are giving that person all the power to control you. A heart full of unforgiveness, bitterness and anger will guarantee a half-life because you can’t fully love and embrace life while your heart is full of poison. Just forgive and let go – it doesn’t mean your ex is right and you are wrong, it doesn’t make it “okay” if they hurt or betray you, it doesn’t mean you are compromising anything – it’s just setting you free, open for love, blessings and a new adventure.
Just know if you are hurting so badly you feel like you could burst that you are not alone and eventually, if you follow through, you will be stronger, happier and can turn around and go from someone crushed to someone whole, healed and looking for heartbroken individuals to comfort and advise on how to survive heartbreak “the classy way”.
Read More on Five Stages of Grief
Take the Myers-Briggs Personality Test
Awesome Articles by Dr Susan Kriegler
Take the Fun Mythical Creature Test
More Personality Quizzes And Here
A Little About Sparkle Ellie:
This post topic is very dear to my heart and not because I did break-ups the classy way but because I didn’t. After experiencing plenty of heartbreak, break-ups and then successfully being single for almost like forever (well, forever in dog years), I found myself a happier, lighter, more stable person and someone who can laugh at how catastrophically wrong I got it in the past. I have hurt way too many people because I was a hurting person – and this is no excuse. I have done some of the “zeffest” things due to heartbreak and I have to work hard at forgiving myself and others. One thing is for sure – I am glad I went through a period of enlightenment. This way if I ever experience heartbreak again I am going to be classy and sassy. Please learn from my mistakes and please share any mistakes you have made. We can go faster alone but further together.