The pain is real. The frustration is real. The sadness is real. And the grieving process, even though none of us wants to go through it, is unfortunately absolutely crucial. Without it, we can’t heal after the worst has happened—you’ve been dumped by your now-ex lover. Just like that.
You’re not alone. Not by a long shot. Today, just like any other day, thousands of women from all around the world will get dumped just like you did. Some guys might do the dirty deed with a semblance of class, where they actually get in touch to talk one on one about the decision to move on. Or, like so many, they may be cowards, and never tell you the facts to your face.
Perhaps you don’t even find out until they’re sleeping with someone else. Or even worse, they ttell your friends that they’re done with you and never have the balls to tell you directly that the relationship is over. They may even go to great lengths to trash talk you, spreading rumours that you’re a terrible person and they had to move on because you treated them so poorly. Even if it’s not true.
The sad fact is, though, that even if someone does end the relationship with class, it doesn’t take away from the pain, hurt, heartache and maybe even resentment of the time you spent together.
So how do you heal after being dumped? There are 6 key steps to follow in order to heal your heart.
6 STEPS TO HEALING YOUR HEART AFTER YOU’VE BEEN DUMPED
Number 1: Write about your pain.
Start to journal about the sadness, loss, shame, and maybe even guilt that led to the ending of the relationship. The most important step is this one, and you should do it every day. We must process, through the writing exercises given, all the emotions that we feel when we are the one left behind at the end of a relationship.
Do not pass go. Do not pass this stage without putting daily effort into the grieving process via journaling. Be extremely specific. Don’t just say I’m sad. Write about why you’re sad, the reasons for your sadness, with specific examples, so that you can truly process at a deep level.
Number 2: And keep writing.
Now write about your anger. Your resentments. Write about why you’re upset with the guy for ending the relationship. Did he do it with class? Even if they did, you still have the right to your own emotions of anger and resentment.
Write about the things he did in the relationship that were not healthy, not cool, not compassionate. Use this writing exercise as a way to start to release the pent-up emotion that we all feel when we are the dumpee.
Number 3: Get out of your way.
After doing your daily writing, do yourself a favour and get the hell out of your house, condo or apartment. Get active. Exercise. Join a gym. Join meet up groups. Write every day, and then get out of your own way.
The physical exercise of even walking in the park, or in the country, or along the beach can help you to heal the wounded heart.
Number 4: Question yourself.
Write about the things in the relationship that you did that were not healthy. Were there times that you were passive aggressive? Were there times that you were condescending? Did you break your word after telling your former partner that you would do certain things for him, but never followed through? What was your role in the demise of the relationship?
This is crucial to do in order to assume responsibility for the failure of the relationship, even if you only own 20% of the reasons why the relationship failed. We need to be honest with ourselves, learn from our mistakes, so we don’t repeat them in the future. Many people bypass this exercise, only to get into similar relationships in the future, with a similar end result. Don’t do that now. Take the time to own the responsibility from your side of the street, of why the love did not last.
Number 5: Forgive mistakes.
Forgive yourself —in writing—for your errors in the relationship. If you’re ready, forgive your former partner for the errors he brought to the relationship that created chaos and drama and finally, the end to the love affair. Don’t resist forgiveness but if you’re not ready, accept that at some time, forgiveness must come.
Individuals who carry resentments at former lovers into new relationships unknowingly put pressure on their new partners. The resentments cannot just be swept underneath the rug. They need to be dealt with—in writing. Don’t send your forgiveness letter to your ex. This activity is to help you come to closure on your own.
Number 6: Get help.
Finally, find a professional to work with. If you’ve been with someone for six months or longer, the odds of being able to go through step one through five listed above on your own are small. Hire a coach, counsellor or minister in order to help you go through the grieving process. And give yourself time to let your hurt go, really leave you, before you date again.
It’ll be well worth the time, money, and effort spent in order to let go of the past, and to get yourself ready for real love to meet you in the future.
David Essel M.S., author of Positive Thinking Will Never Change Your Life…But This Book Will, is a teacher, author, storyteller, radio/TV host, little kid in a man’s body, adjunct professor, seeker, finder, addiction recovery coach, inspirational speaker and all faiths minister who marvels at the beauty of life.