October 21, 2020

How to Repair a Broken Spirit.


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Recently, I’ve written a number of pieces on heartache and heartbreak, falling apart, and seeking out the love that surrounds you. 

The wheels of my mind continue to turn, sometimes fast and sometimes slowly, but nonetheless they move me along the endless exploration of life’s complexities.

Heartbreak is a devastating feeling. We move past the confusion and hurt, growing more and more numb each day, transitioning into an almost catatonic state. The smile may appear on our faces, yet it’s not one that comes from the heart and genuinely lights us from within. It’s an effort. It’s a forced action. It’s exhausting.

We may struggle to find the positive. We may no longer be plagued with conflicting emotions—sadness, guilt, blame, denial, anger, and pain—but rather, burdened by a broken spirit. It stretches way beyond heartbreak. It’s more than a feeling of being done or demolished. Our flame has been extinguished. Our hope, depleted. Our faith, shattered. Our belief in others and, even more disappointing, belief in ourselves may have died. We’re muted. We become a shell of a being with nothing left to fuel our passion and desire to live fully.

It’s a torturous way to exist, merely surviving each day.

We can feel like no one gets it. We can feel misunderstood. We often suffer in isolation, which will definitely accelerate our descent into a living hell. And as much as we want to pull ourselves out of this slump, making every effort to figure out how, our spirit may be broken. It’s like a puzzle missing the pieces to make it whole.

Enduring feelings of sadness, frustration, loneliness, or confusion is absolutely normal. This comes along with the fact that we are human beings, and a life without challenges wouldn’t be a life well-lived. We need to step out of our comfort zones. We must let go to hold on and suffer heartbreak to gain strength.

So, how do we begin repairing a broken spirit?

1. Baby steps. Be patient with yourself and take a step each day—and it may just be one step—to inspire your well-being. Rise early. Get dressed. Go for a walk. Read a book filled with optimism and positivity. Do a good deed for someone else. Mind your thoughts and send the negative ones on a walk to make room for the healthy, positive, and realistic ones. Take care of you.

It may seem impossible at first, but one day leads to another and eventually becomes a way of life.

2. Talk or write it out. If you’re fortunate enough to have understanding family or friends who you can talk to, share what you’re going through. If you don’t have a strong social support system, write it out. Journaling your thoughts, feelings, and experiences can make all the difference in the world.

Sometimes, things don’t seem as mountainous and impossible to navigate when we exchange holding it in for sharing it.

3. Don’t expect a miracle. Too often we await this magical moment when we will suddenly feel wonderful. Our spirits are high, smiles abound, and our energy surges to optimal levels. Terrific if you experience these moments, but don’t expect them.

Healing and restoration is a journey—not a destination. And our happiness naturally ebbs and flows. It is not a constant state to achieve, it is a mindful way of living.

4. Find your faith. No matter who or what it is you believe in, believe in a power higher than yourself. Spirituality of all kinds serve to nurture the soul. It creates a space for love, safety, and wonder. It can guide us in the most challenging of times. And it can be our conscience when we seem to have lost our way.

5. Respect the process. You can repair and restore your spirit, but you need to recognize and respect the fact that it takes time and continual effort. Yes, there are those who tell us how quickly they recovered and how they buried their past like it never happened. I think it’s safe to say that these are the people who are in denial and quite possibly succumb to addiction, repetitive, brief, and superficial relationships, and false personas or sense of selves.

Don’t rush it and don’t grow impatient when it’s not an immediate fix.

If you were taking a course or learning a new skill, you would need to put the time, energy, and effort in to learn—to study, to complete the homework, and pass the tests. Well, living authentically is no different.

Independently, you study and do the homework. The tests are when you interact with others. When you open your heart, allow yourself to be vulnerable and embark on relationships of all kinds—familial, friends, colleagues, or romantic partnerships. Sometimes, we ace it, and sometimes, we fall short. But we don’t stop trying. We forge forward, building reserves of strength and resilience that allow us to form a strong sense of self who can bounce back more quickly and constructively from life’s trials and tribulations.

This too shall pass. It’s up to us and what we make of it. It’s finding the strength within you to move on. It’s being grateful for the smallest of things. And though your spirit may be broken, you can repair it and live out your best possible self.


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