The Lonely Hearts Club: 5 Simple Steps On How To Get Over a Breakup And Move Along

Woman in bed crying with tissue in hand
Get over your ex and un-break your heart with these five simple steps, from getting your anger out in a healthy way to focusing on your best qualities. Photo courtesy of Shutterstock

The piles of tissues, the empty pints of Ben & Jerry’s ice cream, and the old memories scattered all across the floor are all tell-tale signs of a breakup. Whether you choose to break up with someone or someone chooses to break up with you, breakups are devastating and can turn you into an “exaholic,” analyzing voicemails and refreshing your ex’s Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram every 10 minutes. Since love is really like a drug, comparable to addiction in that it can be challenging to get on the road to recovery, it just takes some time to heal all wounds.

Helen Fisher, an anthropologist that studies gender differences and the evolution of human emotions, revealed in a TED talk that when you’re going through a breakup the exact same regions of the brain are activated as when an addict goes through periods of withdrawal. Fisher’s fMRI images revealed the ventral tegmentum area (VTA) and nucleus accumbens, part of the brain responsible for reward, is activated. This helps explain why it is so hard for people to forget their old relationships and ex-partners.

By treating breakups like addictions, SoulPancake developed a five-step program modeled after the 12-step program created for addicts to show you how to really get over a breakup and move along. The program, created by Julian Huguet, SoulPancake host, looks into the science behind breakups and puts newly single participants through the program to help them feel better about themselves and their love life.

1. Get your anger out in a healthy way.

 

2. Turn the breakup into a learning experience. You can't change the past, but you can use it as a lesson. Write down three things you learned from relationship.

 

3. Accept where you are right now. Try to be aware of what you're feeling and don't push it away, don't shut it off, and don't suppress it. One way to do this is through a five-minute meditation that leads to self-acceptance.

 

4. Acknowledge the good. Just as there was a significant amount of reason to end the relationship, there are a lot of positive reasons that kept you in the relationship.

 

5. Focus on your best qualities. Breakups often leave us feeling like our world is crumbling, as if we are worthless. Assess self-worth and internalize you have value. Write down five best qualities you have to offer.

 

These five simple steps led to an average increase in happiness by 13 percent, and jumps of happiness as high as 31 percent. Maybe you can’t change where you are, but there is a healthy way to get through it. Remember to not look at the relationship as a failure, but rather recognize it as an experience that made you smarter.  

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