Ending a relationship is hard, no matter who it’s with. Romantic relationships, friendships, toxic relationships, even professional interactions can have difficult endings.
Some of us experience challenging, perhaps abusive relationships, and we don’t know how to move on after it ends. Some of us may experience the last chapter of a valuable and loving relationship, and yet we still don’t know how to move on.
The good news is that it’s completely possible. The other good news is that there are tools available to you right now that can open your heart to a whole new world of love and friendship.
Moving on From the Good
Some years ago, I had a huge falling out with my closest and dearest friend. My mother had passed and I was experiencing a series state of mourning. I had reached out to her to spill my heart, only to be blocked by anger and accusation that I was being manipulative. I was confused, hurt, and angry. I couldn’t understand why she would say such a thing.
To this day I still don’t understand. I still don’t know what went wrong with the woman I considered my best friend. We talked about everything. I helped her through tough times and she helped me. Only this time, my pain confused her and our friendship abruptly ended.
In order to move on from that experience, I had to remember one very important thing: Her response had nothing to do with me.
Sometimes people are triggered by our words or actions. When this happens, the subconcious mind is activated, and a plethora of old thoughts and feelings emerge. So now in their minds, you are the source of their pain.
In my case, my mourning triggered memories of a toxic friendship my friend had in the past. Thoughts and feelings from that friendship emerged during our interactions. As a result, my friend thought I was “manipulating” her like her old friend would have.
When you can pull back and understand that the reaction of others never has anything to do with you, the loss of that friendship will make sense. Instead of questioning what went wrong and wishing it had never happened, sending thoughts of love and healing instead will mend the both of you.
Moving on From the Bad
Sour, romantic relationships can sabotage our well-being. Once a toxic relationship like this has ended, we fell empty. We want to run back to our lover and reconsile, even though we know deep inside that it really is over.
To add insult to injury, we fear being rejected.
Feeling rejected and empty causes us to isolate, even fall into a depression. If you struggle with this, remember that you have to process the pain before you can feel the joy.
Allow yourself to mourn the loss of your relationship. Often we think that the tears and the isolation will last forever. It won’t. By allowing yourself to cry and process the memories, you’re actually moving yourself through the break-up faster.
Next, envision yourself moving forward. Embrace the space you have and allow it to renew you. See yourself as healthy and happy.
Remember, that this too, shall pass. Keep this in mind everyday as you wake. Say it out loud, several times a day. By sending this message to your mind, your brain will reprogram itself from:
This pain will never go to this too, shall pass.
Moving on From the Ugly
Physically, mentally, and emotionally abusive relationships can be some of the most difficult relationships to move on from. The person we loved and trusted the most has broken us in ways we never thought possible. Sometimes we even think we’re not lovable at all, and therefore not worthy of having a healthy relationship.
Yes, yes you are.
First and foremost, reestablish your sense of safety. Find a friend or family member that will help you through and support you. Seek out support groups, too. Many scoff at this, thinking it’s a sign of weakness. It is not.
Being around those that have moved on and see their self-worth may be the single greatest thing you do for yourself.
Next, grieve the loss. With any relationship that ends, give yourself permission to grieve. Some may tell you, “you’ve cried long enough.” Don’t let that shut you down. Grieve as long as you need to, and then prepare for the next, most beautiful phase of your life.
In this new phase, do things you’ve never done before. Go places you’ve never seen before. By creating new patterns, you’re able to break the old ones. By spending time in new places with new people, you’ll begin to love and appreciate who you are. When you can love and appreciate yourself, you’ll find friends and relationships that will show you that same love and appreciation.
It has been said that relationships have seasons. During those seasons we learn lessons. Some of those lessons are painful. Once the lesson has been delivered, those friends and lovers moves on.
Perhaps a season with them will come again. Perhaps not. Either way, embrace the lesson and the memories. And then open the space for new ones. It’s time for a new season.
Joleene Moody is a PositivityGuides writer and Robbins-Madanes interventionist, specializing in offering information that helps readers shift their mindset quickly in order to improve their lives.