You’re Not Heartbroken, You’re in Withdrawal

A few ideas to help you move on

“It’s over”

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Time won’t fix it

“I’ll be over her in 2 weeks/months/years”.

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Fight against it

Guy Winch recommends writing down all the reasons why the breakup you’ve suffered is a good thing.

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Write a better story

Often it’s not the breakup itself that causes us so much pain. It’s the story we construct around it that does the most damage. We’re so obsessed with interpreting life’s events and figuring out ‘what it all means’ that we sometimes fail to see what’s really happening.

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Fill each trigger with something healthy

When a relationship ends, feelings will linger. And along with feelings, triggers will linger too. Favourite songs, records, books, favourite hangout places even. Even pictures and other remnants that will cause you to wonder about “what could have been…”. As ruthless as this sounds, it’s worth replacing these things with something else. Not a new relationship, but something that has personal relevance to you alone.

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Hope is a dangerous thing

“Hope can be incredibly destructive when your heart is broken” — Guy Winch.

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End the story yourself

If you’ve been ghosted, or otherwise left high and dry without an explanation, the agony is unbearable. The sadness just hits different, I acknowledge that. And the fact remains, that you might never know why you were rejected. And the human mind is wired to seek closure and not getting it can drive it up the wall. One way to work through this is to deal with the ‘what’ of the situation rather than the ‘why’. Why your relationship has ended is less important than the fact that it has ended. This is because the reason this relationship ended might not be cause for concern in the next one. It’s like trying to figure out why a coin toss turned out a certain way. It won’t affect the odds of the next coin toss. With that said, if you are indeed aware of some behavioural patterns that might be causing problems in your interpersonal relationships, it’s on you to address them. Don’t expect the other person to point these things out for you and “give you closure”. Close the book on the ghosting chapter yourself. You can choose to turn your pain into art as a means of finding closure. French artist, Sophie Calle did exactly that.

Sometimes it takes a heartbreak to shake us awake and help us see we are worth so much more than we’re settling for — Mandy Hale

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Author of 'How to be a Lighthouse'. I write for those pursuing excellence and meaning.

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