This story was updated in January 2019.
We’ve all been there. That moment when the happy little world you had built so lovingly comes tearing down. Terrible breakups sometimes happen when you fall in love with the wrong person, or unknowingly, are a part of a one-sided love story. During those low moments, we’ve all wondered the same thing, how do I stop loving someone? How do I stop loving them? If only I could fall out of love, it would hurt so much less.
It’s absolutely okay to take your time to get over a relationship but if it starts hindering with your day to day activities and makes you incapable of performing everyday tasks properly, you know you have a real problem in hand.
If you were in a toxic relationship and still love the person who is inherently bad for you, then you should stop loving the person. Yes, you’re right, it is always easier said than done. The people around you are constantly telling you that he doesn’t deserve it, or he doesn’t love you or that he doesn’t even think about you. However, that rarely ever makes you feel better and usually just reminds you of that person, bringing back memories that you are trying so hard to forget.
So when a friend of mine went through a terrible breakup, after she’d been dating a boy for four years, I started reading up on this topic. To most people, it might seem strange that an article could help you stop loving someone. But this is about so much more than just letting go of toxic people from your life, it's about loving yourself in return. It is about redirecting all that unrequited love towards yourself and learning how to give yourself and your feelings the same importance. Self-love is the most important thing in your life.
Here are a few steps I’ve learned work when you are trying to stop loving someone.
Letting your emotions flow freely and crying your heart out is the first step towards accepting the situation. Research shows that crying releases toxins from your body and relieves stress. Because when tears leave your eyes, they contain stress hormones and other chemicals that you’ve been holding in. So crying helps you reduce stress and let go of what is bothering you.
Holding in tears, which most people believe makes them stronger, does the exact opposite. Holding your tears or blocking tears is a form of repression, which psychologists believe causes mental damage. So the next time someone asks you to ‘stay strong’ and not cry, tell them that crying actually clears your head and helps you perform better. It is more of a boon than a sign of weakness.
There is nothing wrong in seeking help if you can’t get about your daily tasks without thinking of that person. Therapy is a great way to accept your emotions and deal with the situation as a whole. A good therapist will work towards helping you grasp your emotions, work towards understanding your situation and help you get rid of the triggers that remind you of that person.
If you have been depressed then therapy should be your first step. Symptoms of depression include sadness, apathy, general disregard for things, drastic change in sleeping patterns, mood swings, loss of interest in activities, and anxiety of any form. So if you are experiencing any of these symptoms and feel like the situation is out of your control, then asking for help is a good call to make.
A good helpline to contact is Aasra, you can reach them on 022 2754 6669. You can also sign up on the website thelivelovelaughfoundation.org to learn more about depression, anxiety, stress and how to deal with them.
Communication is the key, talking about it with the person who you love will help you understand the situation better. Taking accountability for what happened is very important, so letting the other person know that you love them is a good first step. But instead of trying to reconcile, use this opportunity to face the facts and see the situation for what it really is. This person does not love you back, and this is how things have turned out. Your grasp on reality is important. It may sound harsh, but facing everything, the good and bad aspects of your current truth will hurt as well as heal you.
It is also important that you take accountability for what went wrong in the relationship. Understand the situation without the rose-tinted glasses, respect their decision and the choices they made. At the same time, consider that you may have been wrong in certain situation as well and aren’t in the clear either. Some people just aren’t made to be together and some occurrences are out of your control. The past should stay in the past.
There isn’t a need to go overboard and sign up on a million dating apps. Instead take it slow and make a way out of your shell once again. Leave the luxury of your bed, blanket and Netflix, put on that little black dress, dab on some makeup and fake it till you make it. Step out of your comfort zone and push yourself to socialise, meet your friends on Friday nights. You don’t immediately have to go out and meet a boy, but flirting is good for your health and so is having a laugh.
You may think your friends are being pushy when they ask you to come out for brunches or fancy dinners, but they just want what is best for you. And being around people you love is the best way to forget about someone. Psychologists believe that wearing red lipstick, blush and having an even-skin tone makes your mind believe that you are healthier. And so you successfully fool your body into behaving like you are happy. So ladies, put on some high heels, makeup and step out with sass.
Let the veil disappear and remember things as they were. It is easy to think of only the good times once the relationship has ended and you miss having that person around. But that is not always how things were. Stop romanticizing the past and face the hard, cold facts. There were times that you took this person for granted and times he was two hours late to a date. Romanticizing the past makes you feel worse about the present, it contains an addictive element that makes you crave your former relationship. But remember that this is not how your relationship actually was, that you broke up for a reason and this person is no longer a part of your life.
The sooner you make peace with the present, the easier your path to recovery will be.
Everytime your best friend asks you to ‘block him’ and delete all his pictures, do not ignore her. It is important to distance yourself from your ex or the person who you are trying to forget. Delete his number if you are the kind to drunk-call your ex-boyfriend. Going cold turkey AKA no contact is the most efficient way to forget someone. ‘Out of sight, out of mind’ works like a charm and gives you the space you need to move on in your life.
After you’ve given yourself some time to grieve, do not over-analyze the situation, listen to breakup songs, watch breakup movies and stop thinking about what they are up to. Their actions mattered to you once, but they don’t anymore because they are not a part of your life. Your ironclad will is what will help you move on from this relationship.
Your sole mission in life should be to be happy, with where you are and what you are doing, without looking for approval from a man. Better things are about to come your way, so instead of focusing on what could have been, start working towards something new and healthy. Imagine a situation in which both of you love each other and cherish each other? Getting there requires getting out of your current headspace. That is all the inspiration you need!
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