What’s the best way to cope with a breakup? Pamper yourself.
Here are 10 ways to heal your broken heart, mind, and soul, and move on with your life.
“From the first moment that you have the wind knocked out of you by hearing in one way or another that the relationship is over, you must ruthlessly prioritize doing as little as possible,” writes Delphine Hirsh in The Girls’ Guide to Surviving a Break-Up. “By that I mean you must accept that you are in shock and that you should expect nothing from yourself other than to keep breathing.”
If you’re still in shock over the breakup, take Hirsh’s advice and give yourself time to heal. Practice “self-care”, which simply means taking care of yourself.
And, here are ten tips for healing a broken heart…
10 Best Ways to Cope With a Breakup – Pamper Yourself!
Pamper yourself with a healing spa gift basket – it may be one of the best gifts you can give yourself when you’re coping with a broken heart. I love gift baskets, especially if they’re healthy (try to avoid the chocolate and candy ones – the last thing you need is breakup weight gain!).
1. Get a massage – it does more than alleviate sore muscles. Emotional struggles, such as depression and anxiety, can be healed by massage because it reduces the amount of cortisol in your system and promotes an overall sense of well-being. According to the Massage Therapy Association of Manitoba, “massage promotes elimination of waste products, improves flow of nutrients to body tissues, and increases circulation to all parts of the body.” And remember: the healthier and happier you feel, the easier it’ll be to cope with a relationship breakup.
2. Picture your future love relationships: be hopeful, optimistic, and confident. Guided imagery or visualization can help you heal from a broken relationship. It involves three steps: 1) relaxing; 2) focusing on pain; 3) replacing painful feelings with healthy images. Visualizing what you want your future love relationships to look like can help you cope with a breakup. Visualization floods your body with good hormones and positive feelings. Picturing a happy future can be especially helpful when you find yourself obsessing about your ex-boyfriend.
3. Strive for balance (it’s the key to emotional and physical health). If you’re frantically juggling personal, professional, volunteer and social activities, there’s no doubt that your emotional health will suffer and you’ll have a hard time coping with your broken love relationship. Overdoing it can also include spending too much time alone watching tv, lying in bed, or snoozing. Balance means leaving work or volunteer duties to spend time with family and friends — or pulling away from family and friends to read, walk, or pursue a new hobby.
4. Sniff your way to happiness. Michelle Schoffro Cook, author of The Brain Wash, says, “Natural scents have a direct pathway to the brain and research shows that some chemical constituents of aromatherapy oils, particularly…sesquiterpenes can cross the blood-brain barrier and increase oxygen flow to the brain.” Extra oxygen in your brain increases energy, immune function, learning, attitude and positive emotions…all of which you need if you’re coping with a breakup! Pamper yourself with scents that make you feel good.
5. Soak in classical, easy listening songs or rock ‘n roll music – one of the best ways to cope with a breakup. Music can soothe your soul! Faster, major keys cool your brain, which lifts your mood and helps you cope with negative emotions. Slow, healing music can relieve stress and ease eotional pain. Listen to music from a different, happier era of your life. If you don’t know what to listen to, read The Best Songs for Broken Hearts.
6. Paint, arrange photographs, sculpt, or draw. Making art strengthens your sense of self and contributes to feelings of normalcy. Plus, it’s relaxing to focus on being creative — and it’ll help you cope with a breakup by distracting you from your emotions. Creativity increases serotonin levels and reduces stress; it also improves blood pressure and heart rate. Anything artistic can help create you create a new identity and even let go of someone you love.
7. Skip the evening news – it doesn’t do anything to pamper your mind, body, or soul. Ongoing exposure to depressing, negative information can make you paranoid, anxious and physically unhealthy — and the evening news will not help you cope with a broken relationship. This tip will decrease the stress-related hormones that contribute to high blood pressure, depression, digestive disorders, and a weaker immune system. The healthier you are, the faster you’ll heal. One of the best ways to cope with a breakup is to pamper yourself by surrounding yourself with happy, positive things.
8. Arm yourself with the protective shield of broccoli. Eating nutritiously and taking care of your body is difficult when you’re sad and lonely — but that’s when your body needs nutrition the most. Avoid refined sugar, heavy meats, processed foods, and caffeine because they make you feel sluggish and tired, which will not help you cope with a breakup. Take care of your body: eat fish, whole grains, raw nuts, seeds, beans, legumes, wild rice and of course plenty of fruits and vegetables.
9. Explore museums and solve crossword puzzles. Using your brain to get into the flow of an activity – whether it’s exploring an art gallery or solving a Sudoku puzzle – will help you escape the painful feelings and let go of someone you love. When you’re focused on a puzzle or intellectual pursuit you’re not thinking about your pain or ex-partner. When you’re ready, this tip for coping with a breakup may even help you meet new people…
10. Dig into your spirituality. Pursuing spirituality within a group (a church or synagogue, for instance) increases your social support system, coping skills, and self-image. Recently, researchers found that even people who pray online have fewer negative emotions and higher levels of well-being. If you’re coping with a breakup, try connecting to God or the universe. You’ll feel less fearful and anxious, which will improve your health and immune system.
For more tips on coping with the end of you relaitonship, read Can’t Get Over the Break Up? How to Move Through the Pain.
How will you pamper yourself after breaking up with someone you love?
I'm glad you're here! My name is Laurie Pawlik-Kienlen; my husband Bruce and I live in Vancouver, BC with our critters. We can't have kids, and are learning to accept whatever life brings - both good and bad. I have an MSW (Master of Social Work) from UBC, and degrees in Education and Psychology. I hope you say hello below - I can't give relationship advice, but writing can bring you clarity and insight.