Nobody wants to be broken up with. Nobody wants to be the one who does the breaking up, either. Though it may seem like one is harder than the other, it inevitably sucks either way. If you are dumped, or if you are the dumper, you are still going to need to practice self-care after a breakup.
We have a few ideas on how you can practically take care of yourself and support your healing after a breakup.
After Breakup Self Care 101
Get back out there!
Okay, not necessarily in a dating way. But while you will absolutely need time to yourself right now, you will also need some distractions. By saying yes to more social invitations, you’ll find yourself healing in a way that you won’t if you stay inside alone.
According to a personal experience, as told to Vox, it helps immensely after a breakup. “I got number after number, smiled as widely as I could, and left the clubs exhausted, sore, satisfied, and solo. I slept starfish on my bed and gave myself permission to take up all the space.”
It will be a nice reminder that the world is moving on and that life goes on, even if you feel stuck in heartbreak.
Sweat it out
No, exercise does not cure everything. It’s certainly not the answer to every problem. However, it helps after a breakup. When we exercise, we boost our brain’s natural opioids. Naturally, this can help reset our minds a bit. Exercise is also a great distraction, which is another tactic to overcome a breakup, and it boosts your feeling of confidence and general well-being.
As aforementioned, being distracted does help a broken heart. According to Time Magazine, one of the three strategies to overcome a breakup is distraction. “Just as distracting oneself can help reduce cravings, it may also help a person overcome the persistent thoughts that come with a breakup.”
If you can manage to overcome obsessing over your ex and/or your breakup, you should do so. What better way than to distract yourself? You can distract yourself by working out, spending time with friends or family, or throwing yourself into a new or beloved hobby.
Stay away from social media
After a breakup, one of the best pieces of advice is to avoid social media. Yes, it’s tempting to see what your ex is doing. Or what your ex has liked. Or who has tagged your ex in a photo. But we all know that’s not the best way to get over anything. It may feel extreme, but if you cannot avoid creeping them on social media, block them until you feel strong again.
Be nice to yourself
Instead of beating yourself up or overanalyzing everything you said or did during the relationship, practice compassion instead. It is vital that you take care of yourself at this time.
The majority of breakups are not one person’s fault. Instead of dwelling on what you may or may not have done, be kind to yourself now. Jot down your thoughts and learn from the experience. You will grow from this, especially practicing kindness and compassion for yourself!
Allow yourself time
We’ve all heard it. “Time heals all wounds.” Even though it may be frustrating to hear this when you’re going through something particularly tough, it does end up being true. Take all of the time you need – there is no specific timeline you need to stick to.
Be alone for a bit
Even though we also recommend saying yes and getting out, it’s important to take time for yourself as well. Find a thing that makes you happy and do it. It may be journaling, or working on a novel, or practicing the piano. Read a book you’ve always meant to read. Sleep in a lot. Watch every movie on Netflix. Whatever you need to do to feel good and safe and comfortable is the most important thing.
Breaking up is hard to do. There are plenty of songs about it. Many, many other people have been through it. You yourself may have experienced breakups in the past. The best way to take care of yourself after a breakup is to do what feels best for you. Say yes and get out with some friends! Stay off of your ex’s social media. Work out, and sleep in, and let time heal your wounds.
When recovering from a breakup, you’ll need to find what works for you and lean into it. After a breakup, you’ll feel sad and strange and uncertain. The best news is none of that will last forever. It gets better one day, I promise.