The death of a relationship, dear reader, is a trying time emotionally.
You are at your most fragile, feeling vulnerable, and perhaps even unloved or unlovable. These feelings are all temporary, but in the moment that’s not how they feel – they can feel overwhelming and as if they’ll never go away.
Believe it or not, when emotions run that intensely, and your external world seems to be most in chaos is the exact moment when you need to get the most still and slow down internally. You need to detach yourself from what is happening, in order to get perspective.
That does not mean that you deny your emotions or dissociate from them – you are a human being, of course you are going to experience the trying emotions that go along with any kind of loss.
To detach in a health manner means to separate yourself from those emotions. To become aware of what you are feeling and experiencing, but know that you, who you are is not any of those things.
Have you ever heard the saying that it is often easier to see an issue or a situation in a friend than it is in yourself?
This is because we often have a hard time distancing ourselves from our emotions and our situations enough that we can get the perspective we need. To achieve this mental flexibility requires a certain frame of mind.
Why is this important to put in the effort and energy to get still and try to see our own selves from a 3000 foot view when all we want to do is act out, release those emotions, and “vent”?
Because doing any of those things will simply make your situation worse. Guaranteed. “Blowing up” someone’s phone (or the more adult versions of this behavior) after a breakup will not bring them back to you. It will not make them love and respect you more, and more importantly it will make it harder for you to love and respect yourself and feel good about the actions you are taking.
You must respond instead of reacting knowing that the long-term reward for doing so is going to make you feel a whole lot better and ultimately get you what you want. Doing this requires a discipline as well – you need to give up that short-term release of emotion you get by lashing out or doing anything that shows a less than 100% acceptance of the way things are.
You do not argue, you do not plead, and you certainly do not beg. You accept the situation briefly and professionally – this is hugely important – you are no longer personally or emotionally invested (you will of course still feel invested on that level, but you will not act that way). You are a woman with grace, class, and dignity! You take ownership of your emotions and you are able to act in this mature and impressive way because you know that the correct response in these sorts of situations is to simply make a commitment to yourself to do better. As the saying goes, you do not get bitter, you get better.
Think back to a boyfriend you had in grammar or high-school – you can look back on the experience without any pain even though at the time it probably felt like your world was coming to an end. This is because you have distance, perspective and because you are no longer the person you were at that time – you have matured and expanded your world-view. It seems like a brief event hardly worthy of thought. The exact same thing will happen here, if you make the commitment to act in this way.
“Whenever I feel bad, I use that feeling to motivate me to work harder. I only allow myself one day to feel sorry for myself.” – Beyonce
If you act in this way, it is guaranteed that you will be seen in a new light and your ex will want you back. However, that is not the point. You do not do any of this because you are desperate to be taken back – you do it because you can see past this critical moment and into the future where you do better. And that better version of you makes whatever has happened seem petty, irrelevant, and like simply a footnote or a stepping stone in the larger story of your life. That better version of yourself, and the joy and fulfillment you will feel in doing what it takes to become her is the real reward.