The ultimate step is time. But to help heal and move on faster, the following 7 ideas could help, and can be done in any order, as well as independently of the other steps.
Step 1: Admit it’s over. Some people have a hard time believing that a relationship has ended. Whether it was mutual, or one sided, this will help you see a new path forward. If you keep a journal, that’s a wonderful place for this exercise.
Step 2: Enlist the help of your support network. If you go it alone, it’s very difficult to see a positive perspective if you are trying to hold onto a relationship that’s ended. Call your friends or family, and let them know you need their help. Most likely they will be there before you can hang up the phone.
Step 3: Reflect on what you learned. Many people say, “I just wasted ‘x’ amount of years on this relationship…” and it makes it harder to let go because we want the time we spent to result in something tangible like a life partner. Focus on what you learned, and how you’ve grown. It makes it easier to say goodbye and move forward.
Step 4: Forgive yourself for any transgressions. When you realize that everything that happened was part of the life lesson contained in this relationship, it makes it easier to forgive yourself and others for past emotional injuries. It’s easier to let go and move on when you leave the guilt and questions of, “What did I do wrong?” behind.
Step 5: Seek Counsel from friends or a professional. Similar to enlisting your support network in Step 2, seeking counsel helps you to get additional perspective, which allows you to see new opportunities and life experiences only available once you let go of the past.
Step 6: Do something creative. When we create something, whether it’s a new recipe, a song, a painting, or a mathematical model, we are bringing a new part of ourselves into the world that only existed in our minds previously. That creates strength, which will help you move on in a positive direction.
Step 7: Count your blessings. What are you grateful for? Journal these things and you will be better equipped to let go of someone when you focus on and realize the wealth of all that you still have.
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