Feelings of heartbreak and rejection can do more than take an emotional toll. Functional magnetic resonance imaging research shows that heartache activates the same parts of the brain as physical pain, reports Margaret Paul, relationship counselor, in her PsychCentral article, "Have You Been Burned By a Broken Heart?" When searching for relief, people often turn to bad habits, such as overeating, overworking or spending sprees, she notes. However, these aren't the smartest choices, especially if you plan to pick up the pieces and date again in the future. Instead, learn a few healthier coping activities for heartache.
Rather than spend your energy trying to win back your love, enjoy your independence, suggests Therese Borchard, associate editor of PsychCentral, in her article,"Ten Tips to Mend a Broken Heart." It is up to you to fill the hole your partner left, so take time to focus on you. List your strengths to overcome the feeling of defeat, suggests Borchard, and then set new goals for yourself. You can engage new hobbies or aim for physical fitness. You have plenty of time to devote to self-improvement and self-discovery.
Go with Your Emotions
Emotional tears that stem from heartache actually remove toxic biochemical byproducts from your body, reports Borchard. With that in mind, don't be ashamed to let the tears flow. You might find yourself feeling better after a good cry. Of course, other, lighter emotions can also help you heal. Remember to laugh, reminds Borchard. Find humor to reduce stress and keep things in perspective. Hang out with members of your social network and take part in amusing activities. This way, you'll avoid isolating yourself, and still enjoy a good laugh.
Be Realistic With Your Goals
Yes, eventually, you will heal, but don't set your expectations too high, suggests Margarita Tartakovsky, associate editor for PsychCentral, in her article, "Help on Healing From Heartbreak." For example, if you expect to be over the breakup in a few days, you might find yourself frustrated and depressed. Instead, be patient with yourself. Congratulate yourself on any signs of progress, while avoiding unhealthy habits such as feigning interest in other people to make your ex jealous.
Chat With an Expert
If heartache affects your daily life or if this feelings last for more than several months, seek support from a professional, suggests Tartakovsky. Different people handle heartache in different ways, and perhaps you simply need someone to listen to your frustrations and fears. Don't feel ashamed to reach out for help. The sooner you do, the sooner you can work on rebuilding your happiness.
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