After a challenging breakup, you can use time as an ally to speed healing.
By Sheila Robinson-Kiss, MSW, LCSW
Five years ago I was utterly devastated when a relationship went up in a ball of flames. Nothing made sense. I gave that relationship my all and none of that mattered after the rug was pulled from underneath my feet. I had landed on the concrete. My spirit was broken and my ego was cracked.
I had fallen into a foggy slump, spending my days binging on the Lifetime Television Network and playing video games. Just when I thought the bar couldn’t dip any lower, the door bell rang one night.
It was the pizza delivery guy.
"I didn't order a pizza", I told him, scratching my head.
"I know. I was around the corner on a run and thought I’d check on you. You didn’t look so hot yesterday and ‘ya’ missed calling in your order tonight!"
My God! Intervention had arrived in a rusted blue Ford Escort, bearing gifts of two-for-one coupons.
It was a wake- up call, never to be forgotten.
In the blink of an eye a months had passed and I'd done nothing with that time- which was a gift- despite how I was feeling. Time was doing its job; gently passing by and naturally providing opportunities for forward movement and I was asleep at the wheel.
Time will do its job when you're in the trenches. Will you?
Most people want to feel good despite the realities of their situation. When your heart has been broken or you’ve lost a friend, feeling good may be temporarily out of your reach, but feeling better is always an option. After you've suffered a loss or emotional blow a healing victory may be something as simple as motivating yourself to go for a walk ,when you’d rather hide under your covers.
No one can actually pin point the exact moment when healing happens. It takes place slowly... and then BAM! Like an avalanche; all at once. Out of the blue you find yourself laughing for no good reason as you cross the street. Somehow everyone you greet is wearing a goofy smile. You haven’t felt like this in weeks…even months.
Again, time will do its job when you’re in the trenches. Will you?
Your job is to wake up every day, and gift yourself and those around you with at least one purposeful action within a 24 hour period. For some people that will mean taking special care of a treasured pet, for others it will mean getting dressed, looking your best, and giving your work day 100%.
When meeting life with purposeful action seems especially challenging I have had clients to create and sign healing contracts. It’s a powerful declaration and commitment that you make with yourself to move through the healing process with a strong sense of purpose and self-worth, no matter how rough it gets.
One of the most effective ways to take purposeful action everyday is to help others who are in need of support. Volunteering is huge these days. Writing a letter to a friend who’s down or lending a helping hand on a community project can make a world of difference for you and others.
Why is reaching out to others so powerful at a time when you’d almost certainly prefer to have someone reaching out to you? Because you’re sending a strong, undeniable, message to the universe… “I will not allow myself to linger or hang out in broken places. I deserve more. I’m capable of more. And I’m demonstrating it.”
Sitting in the seat of an activity that brings you passion is another way to send a smoke signal to the universe that says “ Speed my healing! I’m doing my part!”. One woman I know filed her divorce papers on a Monday and enrolled in Dance class on a Tuesday. She met three great friends in the class who turned out to be a tremendous support for her. Meeting those women was the universe responding.
The universe has no choice but to respond. That’s all it does 24/7/365- respond to the signals we’re putting out there.
You are the manager, representative, and CEO of your life. If you don’t show up every day in a leadership role, life will hit the default button, and take control for you.
Time can be your greatest ally, when you’re healing. Use it wisely.