In order to move forward after a devastating breakup or loss takes more than just time. In order to move on when a part of our life is lost, the plans that were made, our shared dreams,and mutual commitments, means we have to explore the painful question of “what now?” We need to redefine ourselves.
Here are four steps needed in this deeply personal process.
1. Embrace your true, raw emotions.
Acknowledge the emotions you’re feeling, honestly and non-judgmentally. Denying, drinking, or trying to forget won’t make you feel whole again. Embracing your grief will. Feel free to feel sad. Cry, yell, it’s OK. It’s the way to honor what you’ve lost, and recognize its meaning to you.
This isn’t time for shame, regret, or self-loathing. This will just complicate the matter. Dwelling on what could have been will just separate your self from your truest, deepest feelings. Learning how to be in control of yourself starts with acceptance. What happened, happened. Embrace your sadness with open arms.
2. Be open to support.
Your friends, family, your pets. If you feel too embarrassed to confide in those around you, you can reach out confidentially, online, to a private counselor, any time of day. There’s just so much support out there, if you can open yourself to these caring, nourishing spiritual connections.
Let your guard down, and be your mournful self, without a mask. Let your real support be there for you. No one expects you to heal overnight. Be open about your pain, and allow others to give you a shoulder to cry on, and share how you feel.
3. Integrate the experience into your self.
After you’ve embraced your grief, think about what have you learned.How did this person or the experience help you become who you are? How did you grow?
Next time you open your heart, consider what you have learned. Give yourself credit for all the experiences you have integrated, and how much healing you have brought to your life. Bring yourself together by acknowledging the part you play in your own life.
4. Get ready for the new you.
Once you get through your sadness, and gain integration, you’ll be ready for a new phase of life. Your experience and insights will make you stronger and more grounded, as you move into your future. You’ll be able to dream again, make new plans, and feel enthusiasm for life. The people who’ve helped you will still be there. Show your gratitude, and feel love.
Don’t feel guilty about feeling happy, it’s only natural for you to graduate towards positive emotions. Happiness, laughter and joy will blossom, don’t close your door out of guilt. You deserve to live life to the fullest.
Moving on doesn’t mean forgetting.
Moving on doesn’t mean denying the pain, it means becoming a new self. Integrating your experiences, both good and bad, into your true self. Redefine who you are, and what you want to be. Moving on means walking through grief, to become a whole, happy, more grown up self.
Trust the journey you are on.