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Romantic relationships are one of the most important connections we experience as individuals. Every aspect of a relationship can teach us new lessons and make us feel like we are a part of something greater than ourselves. Happy relationships can provide us with amazing adventures and take us to places we may never have seen. We are able to build a bond with another person that is intimate and powerful while growing in our own sense of happiness and security. Many times in these relationships, the partners will experience a growth in self-confidence and motivation; a drive to fill their lives with the euphoric feeling that love can provide.
Whether you have experienced a whirlwind romance or were in a committed long-term relationship, there is always the possibility that this true sense of love can end in unbearable pain. People grow apart from each other, they lose trust or excitement in their relationship, get into a habit of constant arguing, the list goes on and on. Regardless of the reason for that wonderful love losing its luster, the pain of a breakup is something that will always sting. You struggle with the idea that they weren't "the one," despite the countless talks of a happy future together. There is a long list of what-ifs and an even longer list of self-doubts. You have to figure out life without them and gain back your independence. Everyone experiences different struggles with this process and there is never a scheduled time for when the sunshine and rainbows will come back into your life. Luckily, there are many things you can do to build your confidence and return your heart to its happiest state.
1. Take a day to cry, but just one.
The initial shock of a breakup can be very difficult to handle, filled with racing thoughts and an extremely wide range of emotions. The best way to deal with this first day as a single woman is to accept your feelings, know that they are valid, and let them escape so you can begin the process of healing. So go ahead, listen to Bon Iver on repeat, cry into your bowl of ice cream, look through all of the pictures and love notes. Let yourself feel the pain and find a constructive way to express all of your awful feelings whether that is sobbing into your mom's arms (like I always do), writing a letter (and not sending it), or yelling at your TV while watching The Notebook. However, this is your one day to get it all out and tomorrow you will have to get back to being a certified badass.
2. Play the music and watch the movies that prove you don't need him.
Music is one of the best ways to cope with something difficult whether its singing in the shower or dancing around in your underwear. The key is to find music that makes you want to take over the world and do not stop listening. One of my all time favorites is entitled Badass Women and can be found using the Spotify link below. Movies are extremely useful because they provide inspiration as well as a distraction, which will be one of your best friends when dealing with a breakup. A movie that should definitely be on repeat is How to be Single. It features an entire group of kick-ass female leads, an uplifting soundtrack, and proves that being single is when the best things in life are bound to happen and one of the few times that you can fully understand and love yourself.
3. Finding the Satisfaction in Self-Care
Taking good care of yourself is extremely important in this process. Force yourself to get out of bed and own the day. Make sure you are eating good food and drinking plenty of water. Shower and make sure that you feel beautiful in your own skin every single day. Make sure you are paying special attention to your mental health, taking your medications and attending regular therapy if needed. Most importantly, treat yourself to the things you know are guaranteed to make you happy. Go crazy with the bath bombs and face masks, buy yourself a bangin' new outfit, or treat yourself to as much pizza and Orange is the New Black as you can handle. The purpose of self-care is to learn to fully love yourself and you should do anything and everything to get there.
4. Keep busy and take advantage of all the free time.
Relationships should be considered a full-time job. Your life together is constantly filled with engagements and you spend the majority of your time together. After a breakup, you may not know what to do with all of this free time, but the possibilities are literally endless. Take full advantage of this time to better yourself and create something exciting out of your life. Pick up a new hobby, pursue an education, finish projects that have been sitting in the corner for months, or spend endless nights out at parties and celebrating the life of a young, single woman. Keeping yourself busy and branching out is the best way to find inspiration and see a difference in the world around you. It is the best possible way to find a happy light in all of the darkness that this situation brings.
5. Move on with a happy heart.
This is the most important step to setting up a better future as you become your own woman again. Forgiveness and a calm heart are one of the hardest things to achieve through all of this, but it is so important for your own happiness. Anger and sadness will only continue to beat you down and make you feel exhausted, and this is the perfect time to let all of them go. You need to constantly remind yourself that you are young, beautiful, and so unbelievably strong. You need to realize that you have a wonderful support system filled with strong and wise people. After you acknowledge all of the happy things that fill your life and find that sense of gratitude, you will be able to move on with a positive outlook and a better sense of who you are and who you want to become.