5 Steps To Move On From A Broken Heart When Your Relationship Ends

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How To Move On From A Broken Heart & Accept That Your Relationship Is Over
Heartbreak

Often a relationship is entered into with the belief that this relationship is the one, and it will certainly last forever. If the relationship fails, you may be extremely disappointed and devastated.

You may ask yourself what went wrong and try everything in your power to save it and make it work. If the other person is not as invested as you are in the relationship or in saving the relationship, it will not work no matter how much you try.

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It is important for individuals to make every effort possible to save a relationship and not have the attitude that you can take it or leave it. However, once you figure out that it cannot be saved, you need to do several things to deal with the disappointment and accept that the relationship has failed and is over.

Here are 5 steps you must take in order to move on past a failed relationship:

1. You must grieve the failed relationship

It is important to allow yourself time to go through a grieving process. If you don’t, you may fall for another person right away and not have dealt with your feelings or have any understanding of why it happened.

You may find yourself immediately in another relationship. At first, it may seem like it is the best one you have ever had! However, so was the last one you were in.

Unfortunately, you may ignore all the red flags that might be there because you have become so desperate to be in a relationship. Your desperation may cause you to overlook all you may need to do to grieve the loss of the last relationship.

You were so down and out that this new one that has come along so quickly may seemingly cause you to ignore your feelings. It’s really crucial to not ignore your depression and sadness that you have felt at the loss of the former relationship.

If you need to talk to someone about your feelings, you should do it right away. The other thing that might be helpful in getting past it, is to get some medication for depression. This will help to even your feelings out a little and help you think more clearly about your situation.

Remember that medication is not for a lifetime but for a period of time to help you get to where you can learn what you need to do, and do it.

2. Try to understand why your relationship failed

You must also come to terms with your part in the failed relationship. It is extremely easy to point the finger and blame the other person for all of what happened to make your relationship fail.

It may also be just as easy to take all of the responsibility for the failure and put yourself down and feel as though you have failed as a person!

Neither way of looking at the issue is right. It takes two of you to make the relationship and it takes two of you to cause it to fall apart.

You need to ask questions of yourself to get a clear picture of what has happened and why. Take responsibility for your part in what was good about the relationship, as well as, your part in what went wrong that caused it to fail.

Only own what you own. Do not take responsibility for what the other person did or did not do that, from your perspective, caused the breakup.

Think about your part in the relationship and what you might have done differently. It could be that you might have listened more or better. It could be that your partner needed for you to express yourself more and in a way that he or she could really hear and take to heart.

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Maybe both of you needed to communicate better and more often. Maybe, you had drifted apart because of life, but needed to spend more time together just having fun and being romantic. There are many things that cause you to drift apart and often people don’t realize that they've been drifting until they look at it and believe they cannot fix it or make it be OK.

Some are not willing to do the hard work to make the relationship better and decide to just end it. Sometimes you may find that things are so bad that the relationship cannot be salvaged, especially if one person has decided to leave and “move on.”

Coming to terms with your part in the failure may mean you have to do some really deep soul searching and be willing to stop being stubborn and recognize that you had a part in what happened.

You were a part of what was happening in your relationship prior to the betrayal. Be willing to look at the “...plank in your own eye before you look at the speck in the other person’s eye.” (Matthew 7:3 NIV)

You need to see that possibly your own “stuff” has been in the way of your ability to really relate to your partner the way you intended to or needed to.

3. You need to do the work to make personal changes

You certainly do not want to repeat the same behavior over and over again expecting different results. You cannot use the excuse that you are who you are and you cannot change!

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You can change, but it takes a lot of work. You are who you are for “good reasons” and decisions you made in order to survive may have worked very well for you in the past, but now those things are getting in your way and ruining your relationships.

You must be willing to address the things from the past that have hurt you and decisions you have made in order to survive those hurts and put it all in perspective if you are to have a successful relationship. You may believe that you don’t have any stuff and that if someone else would just do things your way, then you would be OK.

You will never be OK unless and until you are able to address the things that get in your way of doing relationships in a healthy way. It is most critical to figure this stuff out before you move on into another relationship. If you don’t, your baggage just keeps following you and you keep wondering why things don’t work out for you!

Do the hard work to make changes that are important for you to make. Don’t be so stubborn or so arrogant that you believe you’re perfect and everyone else is flawed.

4. If you need to make amends to the person, then do so

It probably will not change things in your relationship with that person, but it will definitely change things for you as you move forward.

You must be willing and open to making the necessary changes in your behavior and also be open and willing to admit that you have wronged someone else.

5. You need to choose to move on and put it behind you

This can sometimes be hard because there are so many things that remind you of that person and that relationship — both good and bad. You may need to have a “Put it behind you day!”

Choose a day and designate it as that. Maybe, you need to write it down so that you remember it. Then every time something comes up that reminds you of it, you can remind yourself of the day and time that you said, “I have moved on and put this behind me, and I did it on such and such a date and time!”

If you are having difficulty letting go of a relationship and dealing with the disappointment of a failed relationship, please do not hesitate to seek out help. We are available to help you figure out what you need to do to have a successful relationship in the future.

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Doctors David and Debbie McFadden are a husband-and-wife team of marriage counselors who help struggling couples have a smoother, more fulfilling relationship. For more information on how they can help you in a tense or argumentative relationship, contact them through their website for a 15- to 20-minute phone or Skype conversation.