Most of my clients ask me how long it takes to get over a breakup. Well, it’s different for everyone. It usually depends on the length and the quality of the relationship, and most importantly, your willingness to let go.
The longer the relationship the harder is to adjust to life without it. Because human beings are creatures of habit. Addicts are beings of extreme habit. When two people break up, what they initially have to deal with is breaking the habit of interacting with each other. It’s a habit to call to share things that happen, it’s a habit to have an automatic date on weekends, and it’s a habit to let your thoughts focus on what the other person in a relationship is doing. The later is the habit that gives you the most heartache after a breakup.
The best way to break a habit is to replace it with something else. That’s why many people go right into another relationship. I really don’t recommend that. The healthier thing to do is to shift all that loving energy inward toward yourself. Create a new habit of taking care of you. Start by taking care of what you think.
First and foremost, you have to stop thinking about your ex-partner. Every time you allow your thoughts to run the highlight reel—memories of all the good times you had together—your brain responds as if it is happening all over again. That’s why you do it. Re-experiencing loving memories gives you the fix you’re craving. Then, when you stop, you’re snapped back to reality. The pain and withdrawal are just as intense as when the breakup initially happened. You’re back to day one of trying to let go.
Your brain response doesn’t distinguish between thinking and doing. So if you’re trying to get over a breakup, ask yourself if just the memory of a relationship is enough for you. If not, you have to stop thinking good thoughts about the relationship so you can move on. Get a piece of paper and a pen and write down all the things you didn’t like about the relationship—the cons. All the times you felt insecure or sad, didn’t get your needs met, and the rest of the things you just didn’t like. Handwriting instead of using a keyboard helps your brain process the information better.
Use Your Thoughts to Get Over a Breakup
When you truly believe you don’t want your ex back that is when you’ll feel better. Therefore, you get over a breakup much faster when it wasn’t a good relationship to start with. So knock your ex off that pedestal you have him/her on. How often were you happy while you were in this relationship? You should be happy at least 85% of the time in a healthy relationship. If you weren’t, you should be glad you broke up. Now you can be free to find someone better for you.
The bottom line is, a breakup is grief. The 5 stages of grief are denial, bargaining, anger, depression, and acceptance. Everyone goes through the grief process at their own pace and in their own order. So if you need a day to stay in your pajamas and feel sorry for yourself then give yourself permission to do that. But only for one day. Your thoughts can be your best ally or your worst enemy. It’s your choice. Your thought create your feelings. Choose to think things that make you feel good about yourself.
To get over a breakup you need to get really good at positive thinking. Keep your thoughts in the present and only look forward, not back. I promise, your future looks really good if you’ll choose to believe that.
Call me for Breakup Coaching if you need support getting through a breakup.