Recovering from a bad relationship and breakup can be difficult. Healing a broken heart or learning to cope requires time and patience. Unfortunately, unhealthy relationships and bad breakups are sometimes the most difficult ones to overcome and move forward from.
Thankfully, there is some good news: we are not alone. A lot of people have been in similar situations and have overcome the negativity to break out of that dark place you have been hiding in.
12 Ways to Recover from a Bad Relationship
Listed below are twelve suggestions to help you recover from a bad relationship:
1. Find yourself. Take time to do some soul searching and rediscover your goals, passions, and hobbies. Far too often when we are in unhealthy relationships we lose sight of who we are. Go ahead and try that new Yoga class, practice running for that 5k, or dust off your paint brushes. Spend some time getting to know your interests, likes, dislikes, and aspirations.
2. Go ahead and cry. It’s alright to acknowledge your relationship ending. Give yourself permission to cry, eat a pint of ice cream, and tune the radio to easy listening classics. You can grieve, but the key to this is to limit the amount of time you devote to being sad or remorseful. Do it once or twice and then move on. You have a lot to look forward to and wasting precious time on the past won’t change how things happened or ended.
3. Avoid looking for love right away. You are fresh out of a relationship and need time to just breathe. Give yourself permission to enjoy being a singleton for a bit. Use this time to regroup and recharge your innerself. Adding another person to the equation too early could end up in another bad relationship or breakup.
4. Reconnect with friends and family. After a rough split, it can be therapeutic to nurture other relationships. Doing this will allow you to talk with someone and give you a support system to get you over this hump.
5. Set goals. Keep yourself looking forward by creating achievable goals. In the beginning, choose a few easy and quick goals. These could include eating at a new restaurant or swimming in the ocean. Then include a few goals farther down the road to keep you motivated and allow you time to prepare physically, emotionally, and financially. Maybe you want to travel and see Paris in the spring time or go back to college to finally get that degree.
6. Make a list of things you need to survive. Create a personal list of things you need to live: water, air, food, shelter, clothes, etc. to remind you that you don’t need a person to survive. Place this paper somewhere easy to access. You can reread this list to help you remember what you do need if you start to feel alone or anxious.
7. Drink responsibly. Many adults enjoy a night of drinks or sharing a bottle of wine with friends. Just remember to avoid drunk dialing or texting. It’s alright to be mad or sad, but don’t keep rehashing old arguments with your ex. If you do go out for a few drinks, give your friends your phone for the evening to prevent any embarrassing contact with the ex.
8. Surround yourself with positivity. I know it sounds cliche, but look for encouragement around you. Talk to your upbeat friends, create a vision board, or buy one of those iconic empowerment posters to remind you that you can overcome this one dip in the road.
9. Perk up your day with a bouquet. It’s hard to be torchy when you are surrounded by cheerful blooms. Treat yourself to a bunch of flowers and enjoy the little things in life. To make it more meaningful, pick flowers that have special meaning. For example, daisies represent new beginnings and gardenias can symbolize joy.
10. Write a journal. Channel your inner Bridget Jones and put your thoughts down on paper. This is a great way to make sense of the strong emotions you are feeling and help you notice trends or tendencies in your relationships.
11. Pamper yourself. Get a new haircut or spend an afternoon receiving some nail therapy or a day at the spa. Cut away all the worry, sadness, and regret away. It’s okay to spend time caring for yourself and a new look can signify that you are moving forward in life.
12. Hit the gym. Work out your frustration in a spin class or try CrossFit. Pick a rock anthem and sweat that relationship off of your back. Exercise is a natural mood booster and it gives you a healthy outlet for your anger. As an added bonus, you will look amazing!
What tips do you have to recover from a bad relationship?
Gwen Lewis is a writer and makeup artist based in Southern California. Because of her passion for beauty and health, she hopes to help others not just look great but feel great, whether through makeup or her writing. In her free time, she enjoy shopping and pick-up soccer games with her friends.