Love hurts. Let's admit it. Even in the very best of relationships, things are said and done that hurt feelings, bruise egos or leave you feeling a little injured. Wearing your heart on your sleeve comes with the risk of exposure - to both joy and sorrow.
There are various stages of a broken heart. There's a mild broken heart, which tends to fix itself on its own, and goes away in a short amount of time. It usually doesn't require too much attention because the wound will quickly heal.
Then, there's a severe broken heart. The type of pain that sits with you for a period of time. You may do things to make yourself more comfortable during the incubation period such as indulging in retail therapy or watching a marathon of your favorite shows on Netflix. Deep down inside, you know that these feelings will go away, much like the flu, but it's the waiting for it to pass that seems like the longest part.
A chronic broken heart is the worst. It feels terminal. There is simply nothing to console or pacify you as you go through this. It's as if a Mack truck has driven straight through your heart and parked itself there. Noone can understand or relate to it, because you are sure that you are the first person to have ever been diagnosed with such a rare disorder. Your heart simply has stopped working and you are not sure how you are even functioning. Part of you believes you are on life support because that's the only logical way you could be waking up every day.
Any stage of heartbreak can be challenging to manage. Diagnosing the cause of a broken heart can be just as difficult. People handle situations and experiences differently. You can see it in a hospital room where a family is hovering over a sick loved one. One person may be kneeled over in tears while another is laughing and making jokes. Our hearts share the function of beating and providing oxygenated blood to our beings. But our emotional hearts beat differently, in each and every one of us.
Modern medicine has marveled us with heart transplants, pacemakers and valve repairs, but they have yet to be able to cure a broken heart. There is no magic pill to take or a special shot to inject into our blood stream. There's no medical procedure or practice to fix what has been broken.
Even though we can't go the doctor, we can be our own specialists and take our Hippocratic Oath of ethics and honesty: "Physician, Heal thyself."
If you are in a stage of a broken heart, take two of these smart heart suggestions and call a friend every morning:
- Exercise. It may seem like the last thing you want to do, but it's the best thing for you. Exercise gets your feel-good endorphins going. Dedicate an hour a day to walking, riding a bike or lifting weights.
- Eat right. Your body may be craving comfort foods but choosing functional foods is the smarter option. Stick to fruits, vegetables and lean proteins to provide you healthy fuel. Fish and nuts are packed with Omega-3s which is good for the brain. If your brain's thinking straight, you might begin to see things a little clearer with your heart.
- Educate yourself. Take this time to learn more about yourself. Start a journal and write about your feelings. Read Pedra Chodron's self-help books or "non self-help" self-help books, such as Karen Salmansohn's The Bounce Back Book. As much as you may think you are the ONLY one to be going through this, the reality is you are not alone. There's a book for just about every situation and if your's is that unique - maybe your journal will become a best selling book one day.
- Enlighten yourself. Meditation and yoga have shown tremendous healing effects on the terminally ill, crippled and disabled. It also works wonders for the broken hearted. These practices can teach you how to calm your mind and silence the chatter of your own thoughts. Anxiety and depression can also be reduced by a daily practice.
- Expect. Expect things to get better, because they will. The pain will change overtime. It may not ever go away completely. Depending on how you decide to treat yourself as you recover, you could be left with a nasty scar that shines like a battle wound or you could be left with a victory mark of the war that you won. Be kind to yourself during your rehabilitation.
- Engage. Reach out for family, friends or trusted professionals who can assist you. Avoid isolating yourself from the world. People do care about you. Make it a point to call, email or text at least one person every morning, even if it's just to say hello. Keep your heartstrings connected to your support system. You need them right now and they need you, too.
Contributed by Kimberly James, MatchMaster & Dating Expert, www.findyourplusone.com
More Juicy Content From YourTango: