You tried and it was not a match. There were good times, great times even, but the both of you were too incompatible for a stable future. The incompatibilities were blatant, in your face, even unwavering, but you may have tried to gloss over them or convinced yourself that they weren’t there.
Finally, you decided to sit yourself down and have a personal intervention. You carefully weighed the pros and cons. You may have cried, prayed, or devised a plan to try to make things okay so you could keep him, but at the end of the day, the jury came back with the same verdict you always knew.
You’re not right for one another.
So, you buck up and break it off. It hurts, no doubt, and because of the pain you cry and mope around. Time passes though and you are reassured that you made the correct decision. You’re laughing again. You’re thinking of him here and there and you feel no sadness or longing. But then there comes a day when any one of a number of triggers causes you to reminisce. Reminiscing turns into craving and craving turns into longing. The reasons for moving on have grown a bit dim and you’re thinking, “Well, things weren’t so bad between us. Maybe I should call him.”
When you’re teetering on the edge of that fragile moment, it’s important not to make decisions based on fleeting emotion. You don’t want to do or say anything that will cause regret (like sending that emotional text). So, put your phone down. Close that Google window you were about to use to stalk his life through social media. Here are five ways to ensure you make the best decision for yourself when you miss him that badly:
1. Objectively revisit why it wasn’t working. – This seems like a no-brainer, but we often try to smooth over very serious inconsistencies and incompatibilities in our past relationships when our emotions lead us to miss the good times with that person. Look at your old journals. What was it about being in a relationship with that person that kept you up at night and stressed you out? What patterns only worsened over time? What fundamental beliefs didn’t you share? What values did you feel you might have to compromise to keep them? Go there. Be honest with yourself and measure the truth against your emotions.
2. Grab your bucket list and go! – Though new, exciting and interesting experiences don’t completely erase the hurt of the past, they sure are a great way to keep your mind and spirit in a positive place. You have no time to reminisce to the point of obsession and misery because you are out spending your time doing new and wonderful things. By doing something you’ve never done, you’re indirectly affirming yourself and building your self-confidence.
3. Create a positive playlist. – Need I say more? Mix up a list of the most upbeat and inspiring songs you can think of – enough for an hour or two. Listen to that mix when you wake up, in your down time, while you’re driving and when you’re working out. Don’t let yourself sink to a morose place.
4. Make something! – I promise, if you type “affordable DIY projects” into the search bar on Pinterest, your life will change. Whatever your personal interests are, engage yourself in creating things specific to it. Into cosmetics? Try this DIY magnetic makeup board. Into natural bath and body products? Try this list of homemade body butters. Into fashion? Look at this easy way to upcycle an old T-shirt. Get creative!
5. Become one with nature. – This might not be everyone’s cup of tea but being outdoors has proven to have calming effects on the body, mind and spirit. Go for a walk around your neighborhood. Go hiking. Read a book sitting by the lake. Pot or plant some flowers (or a garden) depending on where you live. Have a picnic in your backyard or at the park. Notice the trees, the birds and the insects flying about. Really be present and mindful of how amazing life is and what beauty surrounds you. You’ll be amazed at how it improves not only your emotional well-being but also your health!
Notice that these are all ways you can reel yourself back in. You can do it. You got this, girl.
La Truly is a writer, college professor and young women’s empowerment enthusiast. She mixes her interest in social and cultural issues with her life experiences to encourage thought, discussion and positive change among young Women of Color. Follow her on Twitter: @ashleylatruly and check out her site: www.hersoulinc.com.