The movies have it all wrong: Ice cream alone will not help ease the ache of that gaping hole inside your chest after a relationship ends. Nor will cry-fests and month-long pity parties. Right now, the end of a relationship might feel like the end of all. It might feel like you’ve run out of ink to write your next chapter on your own, but you can’t be even more wrong.
In the early stages, you may feel unmotivated to even get out of bed, let alone take care of your daily routine. Though it’s certainly reasonable to take a few days to sleep in, avoid the outside world, and “wallow,” it can be easy to fall into a prolonged state of misery. — John Sovec, LMFT
The end of a relationship is the best time to get things done, and productivity will be your secret breakup buddy. Humans are not machines that can keep on going with simple patch-up jobs. We cannot simply suppress everything and expect to function optimally. We need to feel and to process our emotions and experiences. Hence, wallowing in grief and heartbreak is not healthy either. Here are some things you can do to boost your productivity along with your morale:
- Develop NEW and productive hobbies. There is a huge emphasis on “new”. Coming from a long term (or even short term) relationship, you’ve probably established some routines centered around your ex-significant other and your collective comfort zone. It might have worked back then. But, now’s not the time to stay loyal to old habits. Routines are boring. You need a complete lifestyle revamp–the kind of revamp that would bring better things to your life. Try a new workout routine, or better yet, a new sport at a different neighborhood. There’s no reason to let go of your fitness just because your ex still goes at your old gym. Besides, the junk food will not magically burn itself.
Think of it this way: it’s kind of like pushing a reset button to a time and place already programmed to get your energy feeling good again. So you’re going to intentionally play that”program” instead of the one that is dragging you down. — Joseph Cardillo Ph.D.
- Discipline yourself. When you feel that you’re slipping back to the state of self-pity, shake yourself a bit. Look into the mirror and loudly tell yourself “no”. Follow the two-minute rule of productivity to shake away procrastination. You’ll feel loads better when you see actual results. It will also give you a head start over the pile of work you ignored post-breakup. Run errands as soon as you realize you need to. Don’t put off the grocery shopping, and while you’re at it, switch back to a healthy diet. Don’t sacrifice your health and well-being over a single episode in your life.
- Go out and socialize. You don’t have to jump back to Tinder or explore the dating scene immediately. But it’s important to have some form of human interaction during your low points in life. Allow yourself to be dragged out of your house by friends, accept invitations of coffee or lunch dates. Do your grocery shopping and smile at strangers. Better yet, invite people over to your house. That way, you are forced to actually clean up the pile of empty takeout boxes and bottles of wine from your pity parties. It doesn’t matter how you do it–you just need to reaffirm that there are still people out there who care about you. That one person is not the end of your worth.