The ABC’s of Breaking Up

Don’t worry…. you can’t do it wrong!

Tornado Heart

Breaking up can feel like a tornado that tears your heart apart.  Getting lost in the turmoil is par for course and I want you to know that you will be okay – it takes time!  When you’re in the middle of it, hearing that it just takes time can feel diminishing to the storm that is ripping through your body, mind, and spirit.  While there is no doing it wrong, there are some strategies that will ease you through it a little better.  I’ll share my top tips for getting through the rough spots.

Tip #1 – Articulate & Acclimate!

When you’re breaking up, you will most definitely go through an adjustment period.   If you’re able to communicate clear boundaries with your ex, then come to agreements about contact or no contact and then honor those agreements.  Again, there is no wrong way of doing this, but you will want to acclimate yourself to life without your ex. I could recommend that you don’t call your ex, but it’s really not about a hard and fast rule, only that you adhere to the agreements you make.  Feel into your body to get the answers that are right for you.


Tip #2 – Build a Buddy System!

You will want a strong support system around you that can support you in acclimating yourself to the new journey you’ve to begun.  Build a support system from people you trust to be firm AND compassionate with you and share with them the agreements you have with your ex, what your intentions are, and – this is the most important – HOW you want them to support you.  For example, if you’ve agreed to no contact, do you want your friends to act as a gate keeper?  Leaving a relationship can be like detoxing and you might just want one more drink.  If that’s the case, then make an agreement with a friend to call him/her first before any contact with you ex.  Be clear about how you want to be supported, so it doesn’t backfire.

Your support system can include family and friends, but this is also a great time to pursue a couple friendships with new people.  Think about someone you’ve wanted to get to know better and create a connection.  A breakup is a perfect time to try a new activity that you’ve been wanting to, but haven’t.  As you breathe through the coming months, weeks, days, hours, and sometimes minutes… you can gently take steps toward reinventing your life.

Tip #3 – Care with Compassion!

Be aware that breaking up is a time when you can be really hard on yourself.  You can slip into fear and anxiety about your future, and this is a time to be really gentle with yourself.  Give yourself some basics like:

  • Time to grieve and cry.
  • Time to have fun and laugh
  • A massage!
  • Kind words and loving thoughts about yourself.

List of actions!

Breaking up is not generally easy to do, but these tips can ease the transition.  Make a list of actions you can take as you navigate the changes.  Here are some ideas:

  • Demand Dignity (especially from yourself)
  • Entertain thoughts about your fabulous future (that’s right – look at the bright side!)
  • Feel your feelings (you cannot heal what you cannot feel)
  • Grieve your loss (even if your breakup is a good thing, there are bound to be things you will miss)
  • Hug yourself (and let others hug you too)
  • Integrate your lessons (or at least identify them, so you can integrate them later)
  • Judge not!  (yourself or your ex)
  • Kiss a baby (or a puppy, or your own hand)
  • Listen to your intuition (this can get mixed up a little, so be careful about going back because you’re sad)

Leaving a relationship can be tricky and it’s important to give yourself the time and space to reconnect with yourself and your own energy.  I’ve always said that “relationships are mirrors into yourself” and a breakup is the perfect catalyst to examine and learn about yourself in the most intimate ways.  From this space you will discover what is important to you and if you take the time to integrate what you’ve learned, then you can move on with the confidence that you won’t repeat the same patterns from the past.  If you do this enough, then you can sing your ABC’s by heart!