You have every right to move forward and to get on with your life.
That advice is as old as dirt.
Some people can just hoop-skip-and-jump right into the arms of someone new like they are an Alzheimer patient with no recall of the past years invested with the person who loved them. It seems like history has no bearing.
There are all sorts of break-up configurations. So, this article is for individuals that gave their heart and soul to their love only to have him or her walk away and then into someone else’s arms. It’s a b*tch!
Before we go into what to do about the one you loved moving on while you are moving forward, let’s talk about the connection that makes it hard to let go.
Every person has a “buy in” to life. A buy-in could be a belief or a certain way of looking at the world. A lot of people operate around the belief that love has to be hard and therefore life becomes about earning love. The act of “earning” also gets coupled with feeling a sense of purpose or being able to make meaning out of emotions. We get locked into these operating systems and configure our relationships around them.
Other buy-ins include feeling entitled like the world owes you something because you are alive. Or doing it for your family or some type of charity mind-set. Buy-ins are the way we make meaning out of life. It is the driving force behind 90 percent of our behavior.
Let’s face it, life doesn’t make a sense. And in order to live it we give meaning to it, take things personally, mis-interpret intention, make stories up about why things are the way they are and explain away emotions.
A classic buy-in that happens after a break-up is the idea, “I’ll find someone better.” And that can be true. Every person we date is part of our evolutionary process and therefore subject to survival of the fittest.
When an ex gets in a new relationship it can feel like we are behind the evolutionary eight-ball—especially if she is the first one to find someone new. This can cause anyone to short-circuit.
Jonny-five is so not alive.
The first thing to do is move your body. There is a good chance your adrenals are on overdrive like jumping out of a plane with no parachute. The natural inclination will be to get on Facebook and see who this “new” person is. We are all private investigators/stalkers thanks to Facebook. Then after you have farmed info, comparisons will be made. “I’m so much better than that b*tch.” Stop it.
Go outside. Run, jump and play. Don’t talk about it with anyone. Talking about it will just endorse bull-shit notions and erratic emotions. Just get sweaty.
If you ever needed motivation to work out, this is it.
And if you broke up because you wanted your ex to change and he wouldn’t, now is the time to be the change you wanted to see in him. Take initiative for getting your life on track.
As an intuitive counselor who supports people through break-ups, I witness how lost my clients feel. The natural impulse is to try and gain control of the situation by ruminating or focusing on what went wrong. This is natural and needed. It’s important to sift through what feels like failures so that you can extrapolate the lessons. And the minute you can actually feel hopeful that the new person your ex is dating will be good for them is the moment you know for sure you’ve become a better person.
If jealousy, revenge, hatred or fear are taking up space in your heart that is normal too. And it is just a really unskilled way to take care of yourself. As the saying goes, “It’s like drinking poison and expecting your enemy to die from it.” I get you may feel robbed like your investment went south. I get it takes a long time to clear the air; like way longer than you would like. I get that the next time you love will be impacted by the last time.
And the point is to love anyway. Don’t let circumstance rob you of that. Don’t let what’s-her-name stand in the way of your joy. There needn’t be any white flags. Sure, there may be grief. There may be complaint. There may be despair. And those are all pit-stops.
Make a few thousand more laps around the track. Win the race. You’re only competing against yourself anyway.
The real secret of not giving a sh*t about what your ex is up to is by investing 100 percent into making your life a pretty good one—leave “Live Your Best Life” for the self-help section. Get mad. Get motivated. Get moving.
And: get on with it.
Oh yes you did!
Listen to this whole thing. It is a game changer!
Love elephant and want to go steady?
Author: Rebekah McClaskey
Editor: Catherine Monkman
Photo: Alan O’Rourke/Flickr