Eight Ways to Be Happy after a Breakup.


The Elephant Ecosystem

Every time you read, share, comment or heart you help an article improve its Rating—which helps Readers see important issues & writers win $$$ from Elephant. Learn more.

Views 10
Shares 7.5
Hearts 1.0
Comments 2.6
Editor's Pick 0.0
Total Ecosystem Rating 0.0
1 Do you love this article? Show the author your support by hearting.
He walked away – Photo Jamie Squires

Finding yourself after a breakup is not easy process, but it is a necessary process.

Ending any relationship comes with a natural grieving process and it is important to acknowledge and accept this. Don’t rush the process. Embrace the pain. It sucks, but if you suppress it you won’t ever heal.

1. Run away.

But come back. After my separation, I ran away with my friend L to Ireland. We spent New Year 2011 drinking a lot. In our defense it was very cold and the only warmth was in the pub. We met amazing people and I have maintained friendships with people I met on this trip.

Although I was running away, I actually found pieces of myself. I rediscovered my laughter. I also found an elephant at the Cliffs of Moher and fell in love with my camera all over again. I bumped into a Texan in Kinsale, Ireland and reconnected with my dancing shoes.

If you choose to run away, run toward yourself. Make a point to define one missing piece and put it back in your puzzle.

Elephant at Cliffs of Moher – Photo Jamie Squires

2. Test yourself on the cellular level with response to music.

We hold memories everywhere in our bodies and music will create a reaction that you may not expect. Play a song once a week until it no longer makes your heart cringe and your chest constrict.

Jason Mraz was a serious trigger for me. I wanted to find him every time I heard this song and pelt him with avocados for making me cry. I wanted to tear that goofy hat from his head and stomp on it. Yes, I seriously hated Jason Mraz. If it played in a shopping center, I would leave the store. Drastic—yes, but throwing up on the floor would have been much much worse. I hated Jason Mraz. I un-liked him on Facebook. That showed him—not really, he didn’t notice but I felt better.

3. “Remember not getting what you want is sometimes an incredible stroke of luck.”

Use this as a time to grow. Instead of allowing a breakup to become a sandbag weighing you down or an anchor holding you in one spot use it as a sail that will propel you forward. A rudder to guide you. Use what you have learned to avoid the same rocks and pitfalls in the future. My grandmother used to say “Be careful what you wish for, you might just get it.” I always thought this was the silliest thing, turns out she was right.

4. Be your own person. Take time to reconnect with yourself. Alone.

Don’t jump into a new relationship because you need attention or physical connection or to fill a void. I have a dear friend and I will hold her hand, hug her and rest my head on her shoulder—just to get that physical contact without any sexual undertones. It is safe and loving and no worries. Find a friend, hug your mom, get a plant and talk to it, walk your dog. Be single and wear that for a while.

5. Remove the fear.

For a long time, I was wrapped in a cocoon of fear (of rejection) and uncertainty. I stopped putting myself out there. I was fully unavailable. After my self imposed single state, I maintained a wall to separate myself from every man. I finally let that wall come down and it took time and trust in myself to realize that being single was not a prison, it was a gift. I allowed myself to finally accept dates and jump in.

6. Be in the present.

Don’t look at every person as your possible mate/partner/future spouse. You will be setting yourself up for failure. Enjoy the moments that you are given and appreciate that they are a gift. Embrace the now, not the future, and let go of the past. The past hurts, bad relationships and breakups only cripple you to be happy with another.

This week I had the opportunity to step out on a limb and throw my cards on the table; it was freeing. I was open, honest and learned that someone I had been involved with is very wrapped up his own past and unwilling to fully allow another person in his life. Instead of being crushed, I had a laugh out loud moment of celebration. I learned it’s okay to take risks and even joyous to utterly fail. Not fearing failure removes all self imposed limitations.

7. Get involved.

Many people when in relationships tend to shut out parts of their lives they love in order to focus that time on partner/spouse. Grab a journal, a piece of printer paper or a napkin and start writing what you enjoy. Find classes or groups in your community and head out!

After a breakup most people will find that their self confidence is a bit battered. Know that the people you will meet doing what you love will be welcoming for no other reason than you share a passion. We all need that connection and community.

8. Focus on acceptance and forgiveness.

You have to accept all your own failings and your previous partners issues. Things usually aren’t one-sided. Forgive yourself and forgive your past. Release yourself from guilt.

My situation is a bit different. My divorce was based on illness. My ex-husband could not cope with a sick spouse and now that I am recovering and stronger, physically I am the girl he knows. But I am not the same person. Three days ago he asked me on a date. I was dumbfounded.

I told him that isn’t a possibility for me. I am not the person I was. He does not know who he is or what he wants, but it can’t be me. I forgave his complete disregard and removal of me from our life because I was sick. I accepted his choice, I let him go. I gave forgiveness but I am never going to forget.

I can not risk ever being with someone who may leave because Lupus, and the recent cancer cells in my kidneys, could come back at any time. Being single is better for me than being with him.

Be strong in yourself; know what you want.

And know that one day, you will be kissed again. Passionately and with complete abandon.



Love fundamentally should be about warmth, affection, caring, communication, trust, space:

Maintaining an Open Heart During a Break Up.


How to Recover From a Break Up the Healthy Way.


Moving Past the Pain of Heartbreak.

Bonus! Seane Corn on love & career:


Editor: Brianna Bemel


The Elephant Ecosystem

Every time you read, share, comment or heart you help an article improve its Rating—which helps Readers see important issues & writers win $$$ from Elephant. Learn more.

Views 10
Shares 7.5
Hearts 1.0
Comments 2.6
Editor's Pick 0.0
Total Ecosystem Rating 0.0
1 Do you love this article? Show the author your support by hearting.

is a new feature on Elephant Journal—enabling you to instantly share your mindful ideas, photos, art, YouTube videos/Instagram links & writings with our 5 million readers. Try it Now.

Write Now

Jamie Squires

Jamie Squires originally from Mobile, Alabama and lives in Boulder, Colorado. Mother, sister, daughter, friend. Photographer. Yogi. Writer. Living with Lupus and celebrating life after cancer. Lover of the written word. She get the giggles..She is generous with her spirit and laughter. Tends to make excessively long lists. Drinks Irish beer. Hates wearing shoes. Is passionate. Jamie is covered in ink. Loves cheese. It doesn’t interest her what you do for a living, she want to know what your dreams are. You find her portfolio at JamieSquires.com and "like" her on Facebook.


49 Responses to “Eight Ways to Be Happy after a Breakup.”

  1. Eric says:

    True. All true, beautiful and wholehearted. I would submit that ice cream has a place in there too.
    THIS: "I wanted to find him every time I heard this song and pelt him with avocados for making me cry. I wanted to tear that goofy hat from his head and stomp on it…" (BAHH!!! awesome. I'm still going to be laughing at that hours from now… 🙂

  2. elle says:

    Here's to sudden changes in travel itineraries and eating at the same restaurant two nights in a row – because we wanted to and there wasn't anyone to stop us (: It was an honor to adventure with you!

    • Jamie says:

      To finding Colin Farrell's house and spelling Guinness "business with a G"
      You put a smile on my face and were an amazing support during a really terrible time. Thank you for being my adventure partner.

  3. Jamie says:

    Dear Jason Mraz,
    I no longer hate you. I no longer detest your hat and your sincere optimism. I no longer want to throw over ripe avocados at you. I think I could even hang out with you and appreciate your mellowness. Let’s grab lunch.

  4. Uma Simon says:

    I liked your article and am giving it out to all the women and men i know who have suffered breakups. Cogent and good advice. Thank you.

  5. Kelsey says:

    I love this. All so true. "Someone Like You" by Adele came out the same time as my break up. I HATED that song. It was awful and caused me to to cringe and violently click my mouse on the Next button on Pandora.

    I can gladly say that I can listen to the song now 🙂

  6. Jamie says:

    Thank you for sharing with friends and I’m glad others relate to the music

    with gratitude,


    • sam says:

      just broke up with who I believed was the love of my life. And it’s really hard for me to imagine a life without him. I’m going to follow these 8 steps.. hopefully someday I will be able to let him go entirely.

  7. Dearbhla says:

    This is a great piece. I'm happily married, but I've been through some gnarly breakups – who hasn't? And I think this is great advice to bear in mind even while in a relationhsip. So important to keep connecting deeply with yourself.
    Well done.

  8. […] because they don’t want to go it alone or can’t stand themselves enough to be alone after a breakup. The sad thing is they become serial daters or marriage junkies who are always hitched but still […]

  9. Mary Rose says:

    thanks ! this really helped alot 🙂 now im completely sure that i can get over him in no time ..

  10. […] upon days, upon years are spent negotiating with rejection. I’m not sure there is such a thing as moving on. Rather, a better deal gets put on the table, or you create a better deal for yourself. You mortgage […]

  11. Lou says:

    You inspired me!!!

  12. jamie says:

    if I inspire just one person, it’s all worth it!

  13. Jayne says:

    Thank you for this. I’ll be reading this a lot in the next few weeks. My boyfriend and I broke up tonight after almost 4 years. My heart is broken but I know I can get through and live and love again. Some of our problems are due to my illness too. I have undifferentiated connective tissue disease, what may be Sjögren’s syndrome and markers of lupus (mainly just the butterfly malar rash), among about 5-6 other diagnoses. There are many issues- commitment (I want to get married and he still isn’t sure), support, feeling like less of a priority… But there is still love. I know this breakup is what is needed and that it’s hard because love used to feel like enough. This helped tremendously, thank you for sharing.

  14. […] person is the one leaving the relationship, there are a lot of feelings of guilt involved. Plus, if you appear too happy, then they may wonder if you ever really cared for them in the first […]

  15. geena says:

    thanks for having this. i realized that my experience with my ex was not that painful but still this will be a very big help.. i thought i was alone experiencing this. its been 8 months since we broke up and still i am not yet okay.

  16. Megan says:

    thank you so much for this

  17. missy says:

    Love this going through a very bad breakup… thanks

  18. jason says:

    If it were that easy, I cannot run away as we had a child after we got married. She sees him every week or so. Since she sees him only so little I have no time to do activities I used to enjoy. What advice can anyone give me?

  19. Lucy says:

    Thank you for this. I’m scared I’ll never find someone who understands me as well as my partner did. How do you get past this?

  20. Gene says:

    Thank – you. I found out my bf was cheating whilst I was ill with Chronic Fatigue. I only found out 1 month ago & although I have recovered so much I am now having to deal with the fact that he has don't this. Thank – you for the tips and encouragement. It is so sad to know that you can love & support someone for so many yrs only for them to ditch you when you are ill and really need them.. He has changed into a different person whilst leading his double life and it is hard to fathom that I will need to start my life all over at 32 again!

  21. RuDee says:

    OH MY GOD.

    This entire time, I've been reeling under the shame/being proud somewhere deep inside for my unique sensitivity after once crying in the toothpaste aisle then needing to flee the store in the middle of a Fleetwood Mac song (eg: in the middle of getting over my greatest heart-ouch). I will shame no more.

    Thankyouthankyouthankyou for sharing.

  22. dreamsinalaska says:

    This is my all-time favorite article from elephant journal! Every word you wrote, I am feeling. I especially liked the "be careful what you wish for." I'm still in the hurting phase, but as time passes, I'm seeing him without the rose-colored glasses I wore with while with him. For several months, I've been waking up feeling sad for myself. A few weeks ago, I woke up feeling sorry for him. I have allowed myself to be vulnerable and I've been honest. He on the other hand has a lot he needs to work through. It's just taken me a long time to see that. Thank your for sharing.

  23. Bonnie says:

    Beautifully written! Made me smile, made the tears well up. I wish you every happiness 🙂

    Ps. Also loved the comments about poor Jason mraz – had never considered an avocado as a projectile before!!!

  24. Carla Colwell Cook says:

    Thank you…in the midst of the dissolution of a 31 year marriage. The fear is almost crippling. I made the mistake of allowing myself to become dependant in far too many ways…gave up my career to raise our three kids and allowed increasingly extreme dysfunction in the relationship. I now am back in school for my degree, hoping to become independent, autonomous and hopefully fully functional and emotionally healthy. It is the hardest thing I’ve ever done.

  25. jeuxps4 says:

    excellent advice, dealing with a breakup can be pretty tough, I deal with it at the moment and this kind of article helps. Thank you

  26. Tahnee says:

    I have just come out of a relationship, and I have been searching for anything that can put the feelings I have into words, alsoseeking comfort in the knowledge that people out there are feeling similar. I thank you for the article 🙂

  27. Mahee says:

    I had a breakup becoz she wants me as frnd and nt to marry me so how can i react to it so i fucked her off frm my life

  28. Nancy says:

    The only person I had in the world was my X. I relocated to be closer to him, when my old world was falling apart and he was there. I have no friends where I live currently. He is a habitual liar and has been classed as a sociopath because of it. He is seeking counseling, but meanwhile, has told me that everything we had for the past 14 months was basically lies, but not everything was a lie. I don't know how to move on, forgive and make new friends. I am a 50 yr old divorced woman; he was the start of a new life and now that is over. I am thinking about counseling myself to learn how to be a better person, alone.. I am going to an Empty Nester Ladies meeting tonight, hoping to meet some new people and connect. I'm depressed, lonely and broken hearted. Any suggestions would be great, thanks for reading.

  29. Betty says:

    Oh the song. The Song! For me it was "Say Something" by A Great Big World. It came out right as my husband of 26 years left without an adequate explanation. It played ALL the time and EVERYWHERE during those long slow months of my heart breaking. After many months of working on myself and coming to love the new me I heard it again the other day. As I listened and sang along I realized sometimes heart break allows our soul to break free. If we survive we learn to fly and become who we were supposed to be all along. Thank you for your wonderful words 🙂

  30. Angie says:

    Wow you are so strong and inspirational! Thank you so much for writing this!

  31. Kelli says:

    It was about giving up, wasn’t it? The song? Because I, too, cried in the friggen grocery store. “I don’t want to be the one who walks away so easily…” “Yes! Yes, I do! I need to be! And wait, this isn’t easy! I DID make a difference, damn it! And I hate this song, but oh, how I loved this song…” Then, after being completely irrational about music in public, I’d get in my car and blast Mean by Taylor Swift unapologetically, half crying, half screaming the lyrics like a lunatic -an angry one… I just thought of it as music therapy. thanks for letting me know I wasn’t alone on this one. 🙂 Solidarity, sister. I think I’ll have that drink with you and Jason when it happens? He’s buying…

  32. Hello Jaime! I read your article on 8 ways to be happy after a break up and it I began wondering about my situation. I’m sorry about you having lopus in the past and I hope everything is going well with your health. I could only imagine the pain you went through during the chemotherapy. I noticed you mentioned that your ex-husband left you after not being able to cope with the fact that you were facing certain health issues. My ex girl and I have dated twice and each time she has left me. The second time we tried to make it work she ended up telling me she had some type of cancer and was, at that very moment going through therapy. I cried for her and it saddened me that she was going through that. But I excepted it and decided to stick around for her. I promised her I would be there for her recovery. 2 months In to the relationship, the chemo got progressively worst as she would throw up and feel very lethargic through out the day. Our communication got worst as our relationship progressed. She ended up leaving me because for other reasons and it sucks because i really wanted to be there for her to see her get better. I’m struggling on a day to day basis mainly due to fact that she refuses to talk to me. I’ve excepted the fact why she doesn’t want to continue on with me but it devastates me that i don’t know how she’s doing at times.

  33. Jerry says:

    I wasn't really on a relationship (well we didn't call it as one though we had mutual understanding) but my friend and I had a couple of intimate times. I felt that he was the one – ended up my 7 year relationship with another person, only to find out that he's confused and can't commit to be with me. Well I find that unfair and I am left hanging with no where to go. I am in the process of getting over him, unfortunately I see him at work everyday. Life.

    I am really happy you are enjoying yourself. I do wish I would get to that same state of mind when the right time comes. Your article just moved me. Thank you and all the best.

  34. Ase says:

    Thank You ! I'm just now going through that down period and trying to dig myself up and stay away from my ex. She's an exceptional young woman and I'm really trying to be just friends, for I have no desire in competely closing the door on her because it ditn't work out between us. I know it takes a little time and patience to fully regain my self esteem and bright smile, but you inspire me forgive myself, control my emotions and get back on my feet, enjoying my life just the way I'm used to. THANK YOU !!!

  35. Mark Tierney says:

    I wish I’d read this a year ago, wise words!

  36. Jackie McCoy says:

    Great article that covers many aspects of an "after" life. Although we like to control our lives and our every single moment, I can't stress enough the importance of #3 in relationships as well as in any given moment in our daily lives. I see it more like a second chance given to us for another "new and better" life… And that's a super exciting thought.

  37. Lucy says:

    Thank you, I needed to read this, this eve. I am going through the fire of a breakup with a man I loved dearly. A man who chose alcohol over the love of a Goddess. A man who jumped into a relationship with a close friend after I left. A man who probably cheated with her after a night of getting drunk together. A man who will not send my things back to me after many civil requests. A man who I still love. The relationship is done and dusted. My heart bleeds. My confidence is at a low, but I know that this is a necessary journey towards wholeness. The pain felt after love is a testimont to love itself. It cracks us open once again.

  38. r042311 says:

    You are a true inspiration, someone that has giving me hope while enduring the pain of a divorce.
    Thank you for sharing this with us, many blessing to you ..

  39. Sandra says:

    Wow … thanks 7 months out of a 20 year long relationship … ive done many of these things except run away (4 children) thanks so much for your beautiful words, Sam Smith is my Jason Mraz its getting better lol

  40. MacGregor1 says:

    Great advice. I am recovering from the unexpected betrayal and abandonment by my partner of 14 years. It hasn’t been a year since she left. I did many of the things on your list and found them helpful. I have gone nomad and switched coasts for the summer and (like you) even spent some time in Ireland. Number three has been crucial to me. I was madly in love with her up to the very end, and it took time for me to realize that her leaving has opened up great opportunities that I might not otherwise have had. Like you, I had health issues that she was incapable of dealing with. She thought I was dependent on her, but the irony is that since she’s been gone I have regained so much independence and have never been healthier or more fit. I am swimming, sailing, kayaking, practicing yoga, and scuba diving! The hardest part is forgiving myself for not realizing for so many years that she didn’t love me very much and forgiving her for dumping me for someone half my age. I’m not quite to the point where I can wish her and her new partner well. When that day finally comes, I will be completely free. Thank you for putting this useful advice out there for the rest of us broken hearted souls. I wish you great happiness.

  41. amanda says:

    After being in relationship with Wilson for seven years,he broke up with me, I did everything possible to bring him back but all was in vain, I wanted him back so much because of the love I have for him, I begged him with everything, I made promises but he refused. I explained my problem to someone online and she suggested that I should contact a spell caster that could help me cast a spell to bring him back but I am the type that don't believed in spell, I had no choice than to try it, I meant a spell caster called dr clement and I email him, and he told me there was no problem that everything will be okay before three days, that my ex will return to me before three days, he cast a powerful spell on my ex and surprisingly in the second day, it was around 4pm, My ex called me, surprisingly, I answered the call and all he said was that he was so sorry for everything that happened, that he wanted me back to him, that he loves me so much. I was so happy and went to him, that was how we started living together happily again. Since then, I have made promise that anybody that has a relationship problem, he we be a help to such person by referring him or her to the only real and powerful spell caster who helped me with my own problem and who is different from all the fake ones out there. Anybody could need the help of the spell caster, his email:[email protected] you can email him if you need his assistance in your relationship or any kind of problem, thank you once again dr for bring my husband back to me .I can never stop talking about you sir you can email him for your own help his email is [email protected]

  42. anni says:

    Thank you prophet jakula for the way you handle my relationship problems and you were able to get my lover back to me within the period of 48 hours. I also want to use this process to give out the details of prophet jakula This man is specialized on getting back lost lover and restoring broken marriages. You can get prophet jakula on [email protected] Through his help your heart desired will be granted within 48 hours

  43. qalsha says:

    thanks for posting out bout this! love all ur article. 😀

  44. Lucy says:

    This is a great article. I’ve recently gone through a break up and its been the most difficult time of my life because he was my first love. But after reading that I feel a bit of hope. And this article is going to stop me from doing all the petty things I had planned lol

  45. Adrian says:

    Hello and thank you for the very interesting website.

    Indeed it's very important to build a new future for ourselves after a break-up. A lot of people stay focused on the past and never move on. Spending time with families is very important to fight loneliness after a separation; even if we don't talk about our love issues. Working out is always a good thing to do even if it's only for a 10 minutes run every day !


Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.