Relationships can be the most rewarding – and sometimes the most emotionally risky – things that people experience.
You’re likely to be the most keenly aware of both the risks and the rewards when you’ve recently broken up, but haven’t fully recovered from the experience.
Some breakups are more difficult than others to recover from. Sometimes the hardest recovery is from a relationship where you knew it would be best to break things off earlier. But, you ignored that and waited a long time to do so. Or waited until your partner made the move to break things off.
Regrouping after a relationship breakup
After breaking up it’s best to take some time out from dating. This is partly to ensure that you have recovered from the painful aspects.
Also, by doing some personal reflection or getting support from a mentor or a relationship coach, you can gain important insights to help you find a better match and be more successful next time.
Of course you don’t want to avoid dating and hide in a cave for months or years, either.
So, how do you know when you’ve recovered from that past relationship?
First, let’s look at signs that you have not recovered yet.
Signs you have not yet recovered from that relationship breakup
If you’re frequently experiencing one or more of the following, it’s likely you’ve not recovered yet.
- Sadness and grief are powerful emotions. Often, people tend to suppress and avoid these emotions rather than allowing them. The paradox is that allowing yourself to experience them is the fastest way to let them go so you can move on.
- Bitterness is powerful, too! It’s usually based on a strongly held belief that you’ve been treated wrongly. Sometimes underlying bitterness is a sadness that you are unable or unwilling to feel. Whether or not you were wronged, the “chip on your shoulder” becomes a heavy log if you keep carrying it around.
- Anger is another highly charged emotion. It’s usually based on the belief that something is wrong, unfair or not to your liking. Anger can be expressed in healthy or unhealthy ways. Sometimes there are other emotions underneath the anger that may be harder to get in touch with.
- Doubt and uncertainty – you wonder if you made the right decision. One day you want to get your ex back, and the next you’re glad to be away from that person.
- Avoiding the situation, and the memories and emotions it brings up. This can be expressed by working extra, going to more social events than usual or even jumping into a new relationship before you’re ready.
Early on after a break up, these emotions can all be normal. There are ways to express them appropriately so you can move through and past them.
If you find that months have passed and some of these things still show up your life, you haven’t fully recovered.
This can be a good signal to seek some assistance from a trusted mentor, therapist or coach. It can help a lot to be able to talk about your experiences and feelings without the fear of judgment or condemnation.
Signs you have healed from a relationship breakup
Now let’s look at some signs you’re ready to move on.
- You have perspective – You understand some of the things that went wrong. You see how both people made some mistakes. And you have a sense of how you can do things differently next time.
- Deep inside you know you control your life. You know the past does not control you. Unless, you let it.
- You have a soft heart. You’ve let go of anger and bitterness. You may not want to see your ex, but you have a compassionate attitude toward yourself and him or her about what happened.
The main way you’ll know when you’ve recovered from the relationship and breakup is when the situation or memory stops feeling heavy or painful to you.
When memories come to mind you won’t be gripped by overpowering emotions – mostly. Sure, a healthy person can still have times of sadness when a certain memory comes to mind. But, mostly, you’ve moved on and those feelings of sadness or regret will pass quickly when they do surface.
The dangers of a rebound relationship
By paying attention to where you are in your post-breakup journey, you can avoid the dangers of a rebound relationship.
It’s easy enough when getting into a new relationship to overlook important red flags. This is even easier when you jump too quickly after a breakup into a new relationship.
Doing this puts you at risk for being hurt again – perhaps even more deeply hurt than before.
Taking the time to heal and recover from a breakup is important, but not easy. It can clear the path for relationship success in the future.
It’s Time To Avoid Another Breakup
The best thing you can do for yourself while recovering from a breakup and getting into a new relationship is to apply some of your time, strength, and energy into learning to love yourself more and better.
Re-discover the things you like about yourself and the world. Focusing on your passions and things you can be grateful for will go much further for your recovery and future relationship success than staying stuck in the past.
If you’re having trouble letting go, then consider finding support. Relationship coaching can be valuable in helping you to regain equilibrium and boost your self-esteem.
Most important, plant the seeds that will increase the chances your next relationship is successful.