I had a breakup when I was younger with a loved one that didn’t end in yelling or I hate you’s but rather in, "I love you but I’m not emotionally ready to give you the love you need." I was confused because my teenage years were filled with dramatic endings, not a reasonable explanation why a story had to come to an end; It felt as if our book was closed early because of exploration into our own journals filled with personal experiences. My partners didn’t love themselves, and I lost the love for myself in the process of trying to give enough love for the both of us. I was left wondering, "What do I do now? How do I find love again if it was too much for someone? I can’t focus on myself because I need to find someone to fill this hole right now.” I thought I did love myself but after a year of sacrificing that for someone, I ended up letting it trickle out slowly. So, I created a list as a reminder on how to find love for yourself all over again.
1. Pick up a new skill
Nothing feels better than obtaining a new skill, being able to perform some task and looking at yourself knowing that you did that all on your own. It helps bring a sense of accomplishment and independence that you have desperately needed for a bit since deciding you needed to love yourself. I recently decided that I wanted to pick up playing an instrument for the betterment of myself and no one else, which made me feel so strong and empowered. Go pick up that skill you have been putting off for centuries and fall in love with a new part of yourself.
2. Start meditation each night
Being able to be still with your thoughts, and let them flow back and forth no matter if they are bad or good. Learn to breathe and be present with the moment because being caught up in the past is something very common with a breakup, and meditation can help with that.
3. Let yourself feel
Feel all the emotions you need to get past this hurt and trust me it will hurt so much. But the exploration of yourself is so worth the hurt, you will find yourself thanking the person who hurt you so you can focus on yourself more. You find out that all the feeling you let out are therapeutic and have a special place in the healing process.
4. Spend time alone
Some might find this terrifying but I personally think this is something worth trying; Take yourself out to dinner, for a nice walk on the beach, to the movies, or any place you can imagine, just enjoy time with yourself because you are the only "you" you have. Learn about the things that you enjoy to do, and the things that you would rather be surrounded by people with. Learn, learn, learn.
5. Evaluate the relationships you have in your life (bad and good)
This is a big step that I took only recently: I started to evaluate the relationships that I had in my life and whether they were motivating me to grow or holding me stagnant in my ways. It was hard to cut out the toxic individuals in my life but beneficial in surrounding myself with people who understood the times I would need time to myself to build a stronger connection with myself.
6. Don’t apologize
Never apologize for who you are or for taking care of you; In your life, you are the most important person and don’t feel sorry about that. Yes, be compassionate and respectful of others but don’t feel bad for taking a step back and focusing on yourself first before others.Loving yourself is a lifelong journey and although I want to say one day you will wake every day happier than the next, it doesn’t work that way. You continue to learn new avenues to love on the days you found a stop sign at the other ones, but you can’t just park your car and expect things to change, you must keep driving.