How to heal and move on from a broken heart

How to Heal a Broken Heart: 10 Tips

Dana Bottari, LCSW, a psychotherapist based in Florida, says that at the start of a relationship, our thoughts tend to be happy and uplifting. “We may have felt good about ourselves — thoughts about the time our ex commented that we were beautiful or handsome or how much they loved us,” she says.

However, when the relationship ends, your thoughts may be mixed. “We have the positive messages that were given by our ex, combined with perhaps our own judgmental thoughts that we are not good enough or thoughts that things never work out for us,” explains Bottari.

Thoughts affect feelings, and feelings affect actions, she says. When you’re feeling down, you may engage in behaviors you typically don’t. For example, you may skip showering or avoid getting together with friends and family. “We may now feel more alone than ever,” Bottari says.

Gina Moffa, LCSW, a psychotherapist based in New York City, adds that the details and circumstances of a breakup determine how you feel.

“If you feel you’re leaving someone in a painful place after you end it, you may be ridden with guilt and sadness. If you’re the one who’s been broken up with, you may be in a state of shock and go through different phases of grief, including anger, bargaining, depression, and anxiety,” explains Moffa.

As you cope with the loss of a relationship, these tips may help you on your journey to healing.


Take time to grieve

If possible, try to think of the loss of the relationship as a grieving process.

“Give yourself time. Do not try to find someone new right away,” says Bottari. “The best thing we can do is to try to honor our emotions and not judge our emotions.”

To validate your emotions, it may help you to reframe your thoughts. Instead of thinking, “I shouldn’t feel so sad,” Bottari recommends thinking, “I am experiencing feelings of sadness, and that’s OK.”

While some people take time to be alone, look inward, or see a therapist to work through the complicated emotions of a breakup, others may suppress painful feelings and jump into another relationship. “I don’t recommend that. We need time to heal what’s been shattered,” says Moffa.

“We need time to look within and take inventory of what patterns we may have taken into the relationship with us that no longer work. We need to tend to our wounded hearts and take the time to allow the healing to happen with time, care, gentleness, and deeper self-understanding,” she says.


Find a new source of joy

When you make time for self-inquiry and self-reconnection, Moffa says that this can lead to connection with what may have once brought you peace, joy, or inspiration but was put on hold during your relationship.

“We may be more open to saying ‘yes’ to new things, people, and experiences as a way to explore a newfound sense of freedom, even if it hurts,” she says.

Bottari suggests pushing yourself to do things, even when you don’t feel like it. “Chances are, even after meeting a friend for lunch, you arrive home feeling better than had you stayed home,” she says.


Make a list of what you like about yourself

When you are feeling low about yourself, consider making a list of all the good things you did for your past partner or all the qualities they liked about you — and the qualities you like about yourself.

For example, you might write a self-love list like this:

  • I made him coffee in the morning.
  • I picked her up from the train station when it rained.
  • I put on her favorite song when she was sad.
  • I reminded him about his dad’s birthday.

You may also find it helpful to write out a list of positive things you’ll do in future relationships.

If you’d rather not think about relationships, Bottari suggests searching the internet for self-affirmations that resonate with you, such as:

  • I am not my mistakes.
  • I am enough.
  • There is no wrong decision.

“Recite these when you are having negative or self-defeating thoughts,” Bottari says.


Acknowledge thoughts about your former partner

When thoughts of your ex arise, try not to stop or block them. Instead, Bottari says, practice being a “witness” to these thoughts. When the thoughts come up, take a step back and acknowledge them.

“You know you are experiencing them; they are passing through your mind. You observe them. You practice observing and letting them go,” she explains.

“The minute you pay attention to one and label it as something ‘important,’ you are no longer witnessing them. You are now judging them. Judging brings more negative emotions since your expectations were not met.”


Express your needs to others

If you’re not feeling up to meeting friends out or are having a hard time following through on commitments, try to share your feelings with others.

“Try to reconsider your needs at this time and let others know what you are dealing with,” says Bottari. “Many people have felt the same way and will understand that you might need some time to return to your normal state.


Turn your attention toward others

When the pain of a breakup is too hard to bear, you may find that focusing on the needs of others can help bring feelings of wellbeing and distract you from focusing on yourself, explains Bottari.

Consider volunteering at a local soup kitchen or animal shelter, helping a friend in need with meals or cleaning, or cutting a neighbor’s grass.


Allow emotions to flow

You may find it helpful to talk to a trusted friend, family member, or therapist about emotions related to your breakup or ex-partner.

If you’re not comfortable sharing all of your feelings, consider writing them down or meditating on them. You can also engage in another project, such as painting, that may help you release what’s on your mind.


Find relief in exercise and movement

Research shows that exercise can reduce stress. “Use exercise as a healthy outlet to manage feelings of anxiety, sadness, lethargy, and stress,” Bottari says.

A daily walk, bike ride, or online workout video are ways to work exercise into your daily routine when you’re feeling sad or stressed about the breakup.


Avoid activities that remind you of your ex

If you continue to feel overwhelmed by unwanted thoughts and emotions, consider staying away from places, music, and people who remind you of your ex for a little while.

“Try to go places that make you feel safe. Surround yourself with people that care about you. Go places that you have never been. Take a day trip and explore,” suggests Bottari.


Make meaning of the breakup

If possible, try to make meaning of the relationship ending, or accept that there’s no meaning to why it ended.

“Over time, you may come to realize that the end of your relationship was ultimately in your best interest. However, it is possible that you might not be able to find any positive in the relationship ending. Both are valid conclusions. Try to have faith and keep moving forward,” says Bottari.

A breakup can leave you feeling sad and alone, no matter who made the decision to split up. Cycling through a variety of feelings after a breakup is normal, especially if it was unexpected.

“We forget that we are meant to grow and change and learn. That doesn’t always happen at the same time or in the same way in a relationship,” says Moffa.

“Sometimes, one person changes and the other doesn’t. So, be gentle with yourself. You’re changing and growing and healing. We can’t do that all by force.”

Remember, it’s OK to not feel OK for a while. Give yourself time to process the loss of the relationship and practice self-compassion.

How to Get Over Heartbreak, According to Psychologists

On a scale of 1 to torturous, getting your heart broken is a solid “absolutely awful.” Most of us have been there at some point, left wondering how to get over heartbreak. While there’s no surefire way to avoid a broken heart (unless you’re an unfeeling robot, of course), there is a way through it—even if, at the moment, you truly believe you’ll never be happy again.  

Understanding how your mind works—and how to work it better—can be helpful after breaking up. “It’s important to understand that we humans come hardwired with the ability to experience pleasure from our intimate connections and pain form heartbreak,” says Nan Wise, PhD, a sex therapist, neuroscientist, relationship expert, and the author of Why Good Sex Matters: Understanding the Neuroscience of Pleasure for a Smarter, Happier, and More Purpose-Filled Life. “The oldest part of our brain, which we share with all mammals and many other animals, has a circuit of brain regions—the panic/grief/sadness system—that gets activated when we experience the loss of an important relationship.” 

According to Dr. Wise, this means your body can very much feel the physical and emotional aftereffects of a breakup because our brains instinctually view relationships, and the resources they provide, as essential for survival. “When activated, this panic/grief/sadness system creates painful withdrawal-like symptoms: an ache in the heart, overwhelming sadness and despair, ruminations, regrets, and diminished enthusiasm for life,” explains Dr. Wise. “It is important to remember that heartbreak and subsequent grief are not pathological, but a normal part of being an emotional creature. It is just the dark side to our life-affirming ability to form loving, intimate connections.”

Here, Dr. Wise and other experts share advice for how to get over heartbreak. 

1. Allow yourself to feel your feelings.

When somebody breaks up with you, you’re going to feel a flood of emotions, says Rebecca Hendrix, LMFT, a psychotherapist in New York City. “It’s a trauma. It’s a shock to your system.” And as with any type of emotional shock, “you want to be really gentle with yourself and you want to allow yourself to feel your feelings,” she says. After all, your feelings are there for a reason—they can help you move through difficult experiences, but only if you release them.

In the days following the breakup, allow yourself to cry and acknowledge that a breakup is like any other type of loss. With loss come five stages of grief: denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance. “You’re going to go through those in your own way, in your own time,” says Hendrix. And during the process, validate your feelings by saying things like “Why wouldn’t I feel like way?” and “Of course I’m experiencing this emotion.”

2. But don’t

become your feelings.

Though it’s important to express your feelings, it’s also important to stop short of becoming them, says Hendrix. So if you feel sad, let yourself wallow for a certain amount of time—say, an hour. Cry, scream, yell, journal, do whatever you need to do to let your emotions flow freely, she says. But when those 60 minutes are up, stop and move on to something else. 

3. Cut off communication with your ex.

There’s a scientific reason heartbreak hurts so much: You actually go through withdrawal-like symptoms after a breakup because the feel-good hormones you got from your partner are suddenly gone, says Elle Huerta, founder of Mend, an app and online community designed to help people post-breakup. “When your partner is no longer there, you start to crave those feel-good hormones,” she explains. “If you give in to this feeling and see your ex again, you’ll struggle to move forward and find yourself stuck months and maybe even years later.” (That’s why Mend promotes a 60-day “ex detox.”)

Cutting off all contact in the beginning is healthy, agrees Hendrix. It allows you to break your attachment to your former partner. That said, there’s no hard-and-fast rule about contacting your ex, she says. Brief, occasional communication—like, “Hey, could we talk for a few minutes? I’m having a hard time with this”—could be okay. Just be cautious that those “innocent check-ins” don’t become a habit. “Every time you talk to them, you open up another energy tie between you, and your goal is to break those energetic ties, not to keep creating them,” says Hendrix.

4. Find a support system.

Call two or three people you really care about and let them know what you’re going through, says Hendrix: “A lot of people love you, and they want to support you, but often they don’t know how because you’re not telling them.

Opening up to others may bring catharsis in return. “Most everyone has been on the receiving end of a breakup at one time or another, and commiserating with them, sharing experiences, getting counsel, being reminded you’re not alone, can be highly beneficial,” says Franklin A. Porter, PhD, a clinical psychologist in New York City.

5. Exercise.

Breaking a sweat may be the last thing you want to do when you’re wallowing, but trust: It can help just as much as watching those breakup movies, if not more. “The endorphins produced during exercise will help with the withdrawal symptoms post-breakup, and it also helps you build confidence in yourself,” says Huerta.

6. Try yoga or meditation.

If running on the treadmill isn’t your idea of how to get over someone, at least consider gentle movement activities like yoga or meditation. “Grief is experienced in the body,” says Dr. Wise. She suggests yoga to help your body release those emotions. “Grief is stressful and can temporarily dysregulate the autonomic nervous system, hence changes in your sleep, appetite, and concentration. ” According to Dr. Wise, breath work—a big part of yoga and meditation practices—can help calm the activation of that system.

“Going through grief can be an opportunity to learn new wellness habits like the regular practice of yoga, mindfulness, exercise, and even honing the ability to create more resilience and resourcefulness,” she explains. “If you have challenges finding such a practice, consider using a HeartMath biofeedback device, which can help you reset your nervous system and decrease the adverse effects of stress.”

7. Remember what sucked.

A common response if you regret breaking up is to idealize the other person, says Hendrix. And while you don’t want to deny that there were good parts of your relationship, you also don’t want to fixate on them. To find the middle ground, write a list of all the negative aspects of your former partner or relationship and look at it on the reg. “This mental exercise helps counterbalance all the obsessive thinking you will probably be experiencing around what you miss about your ex and why they were so great—even if they weren’t,” says Huerta.

8. Take care of yourself.

All experts agree that taking care of yourself in the midst of heartbreak is key. Check in with yourself throughout the day, says Hendrix, and ask, What do I need? Maybe it’s a healthy salad, maybe it’s a hot bath, maybe it’s a phone call with a friend.

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Also, know that feelings of rejection and diminished self-worth could trigger unhealthy responses like over- or undereating or substance abuse, which could lead to a depressive spiral, says Dr. Porter. “Exercise, nutrition, and proper sleep will raise the floor on how bad you feel,” he adds.

9. Don’t judge the length of your healing process.

“Don’t equate the time of healing with the time of your relationship,” says Hendrix. Even “almost” relationships can cause enormous heartbreak, says Huerta.

“A lot of times people are like, ‘Well, I was only with them for six months. Why am I devastated?’” says Hendrix. “Because you fell for them in six months and you’ve gotten super attached and you started spending every day and night together for a while. Your six months is like somebody else’s two years. So whatever you feel, honor that.” In truth, how long it takes to get over an ex depends on a variety of factors, including the narrative you tell yourself.

10. Don’t internalize the breakup.

In the aftermath of a difficult split, Dr. Porter says, avoid thinking, I’m not good enough—there’s something wrong with me. Instead, situate the problem in the relationship (if not in your partner), he says.

11. Identify and eliminate unhealthy behaviors.

Try to understand any impulses you may be having, like texting your ex, checking their Instagram every hour, or replaying every damn detail of your last weekend together. These urges are part of the natural withdrawal process that happens after heartbreak, but don’t let yourself overindulge in obsessive behaviors (like analyzing every aspect of your relationship until 4 a.m.), says Hendrix. If you find yourself spending significant time in this frame of mind, it might be wise to reach out to a coach or therapist for support.

12. Create new routines.

Realize that the breakup is likely going to cause voids in your life. Say you and your ex always went to the movies every Friday, says Hendrix. Now your Friday nights are wide open, but instead of wallowing alone, proactively call your friends and make plans.

13. Explore old—and new—interests.

Say you really enjoy the outdoors, but your ex didn’t, so while you were together, you cut back on your weekend hiking habit. Now that you’re single, give yourself permission to reconnect with that interest and also explore new hobbies. “The universe meets us at the point of action, and if we’re trying to heal, we have to take steps to heal,” says Hendrix.

Take intentional steps to move forward with your life, like joining a new gym, signing up for pottery class, or booking a trip with friends.

14. Accept that closure is something you may need to find on your own.

Sometimes you’re not going to get the closure you need from your ex, and you’ll have to find it on your own. If your former partner couldn’t explain the reason for the breakup, create your own healthy narrative. And if that isn’t enough to provide closure, consider talking with a therapist about how to heal a broken heart, says Hendrix.

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Also, if your breakup triggers thoughts and feelings about other losses in your life and you’re having a hard time processing it all, definitely seek outside help.

15. If you decide to date, do so cautiously.

After getting your heart trampled, it can be tempting to instantly download a dating app and search for a rebound. But Hendrix warns against dating too soon after heartbreak. “You don’t want to push yourself before it’s time just to avoid feeling your feelings because, most likely, they’re going to come back to bite you,” she says. At the same time, reentering the dating scene could provide a healthy confidence boost for your bruised ego. Just be honest with yourself—and the people you’re dating—about where you’re at emotionally, she says. If you’re not fully over your ex and simply looking for a fun fling, say so. 

16. Trust that the pain won’t last forever.

“However much pain you’re experiencing, try to believe that ‘this, too, shall pass,’ and have faith that on any given day, you could meet your special someone who’s truly right for you,” says Dr. Porter. When you’re in the thick of heartbreak, it can be hard to imagine that you could ever feel otherwise. But “time does tend to heal most, if not all wounds,” says Dr. Porter.

17. Down the road, reflect on the positive things.

In the long run, the breakup shouldn’t taint the whole relationship, says Dr. Porter. “As the pain subsides, consider the good you got out of it, embrace the excitement of new possibilities, and remind yourself how awesome you are.”

Four Methods for Healing a Broken Heart


Man and Woman Know Yourself

“We parted two months ago by mutual agreement. By this point, it was clear to both of us that our difficult relationship would lead nowhere. I don't want him back, but I can't forget him either. All the time I remember those days and nights when we were good together. I often cry. It is difficult to do even daily activities. Advise me what to do,” asks 29-year-old Anastasia.

32-year-old Eugene echoes her: “I have been in love with Marina for a long time, I tried to court, but I immediately realized that this was a hopeless case: she would soon marry someone else. I would really like to just forget her and switch. I've tried dating other women... that's not it at all! After each meeting, I think that everything would be different with Marina. These thoughts are driving me crazy."

Immersed in a painful sense of loss, all those who have suffered from unrequited love since Antiquity ask themselves: how to endure this ordeal - one of the most difficult? Who will help to heal from love? The ancient Roman poet Ovid tried to answer this question with a long poem "The Cure for Love".

Today, the internet is the go-to guide, where you can find numerous stories about "how I forgot my ex" or cure love with wikiHow, the premier online guide that "teaches you to do everything." The longest of his instructions on how to fall out of love includes 17 steps.

Ovid's recipes

In the second year of our era, when Ovid was accused of wasting his talent only on singing love, he responded by writing a poem of 814 verses in which he teaches "the art of falling out of love." Here are some quotes from her.

“Avoid idleness: idleness breeds love and nourishes it. She is both the cause and the food for this so sweet affliction.”


“Keep apparent calmness, and this calmness, at first feigned, will become real. May you have the strength to consider yourself healed, and you will definitely be healed.


“Isn't it wiser to remain silent than to keep repeating that you no longer love? The one who says, "I don't love anymore," still loves. Gradually, and not immediately, we extinguish our flame. Hurry slowly and you will be saved from adversity.

Society tends to regard unrequited love as an annoying hindrance that reduces our social "efficiency". And since surgeons have learned how to transplant a heart, we are also trying to heal it with the help of modern methods. But which one do you prefer?

We interviewed four specialists. Their approaches are different but effective. The choice depends on the goals that we set for ourselves.

Psychodrama to complete the relationship

Ekaterina Lopukhina, psychodramatist

Motto: become the author of your own life. We often feel that something is happening to us, and we can only worry about it. But we also compose our life, and every author knows that the hero goes through trials in order to acquire new qualities. Psychodrama helps to make trials a part of life experience, to understand how and why they change us.

How it works: reach agreement with all parts of your personality. Our suffering is explained by the conflict of parts: one wants to return to the relationship, the other wants to end it. There is one that is angry and one that is sad. The psychodramatist will offer to isolate each part as a separate character and give it the opportunity to express position and feelings. Then these parts can enter into a dialogue, but even the first stage of the work - distinguishing between individual voices in the inner turmoil - already helps the sufferer from love.

It is also possible to discover that part of ourselves that we feel we have lost with the end of a relationship. What was I like in these relationships, what do I miss so much? Our task is to “call” this part with its qualities back and find a place for it in our life. There is a lot to be said in a relationship. And if they are interrupted, the feelings and thoughts addressed to the partner remain unexpressed. Psychodrama offers a conversation with an imaginary partner in a symbolic space.

What has been started must be completed so that there is no story without an end that makes us scroll through failed explanations in our heads. In addition, we can come up with farewell rituals and act them out.

Limitations: the method is not suitable for those whose emotions are difficult to control, who are "overwhelmed" or "knocked down" by feelings. It is also unlikely to suit those who, in principle, find it difficult and do not want to speak.

Hypnosis to calm down

Miriam Ruhr, Coach

Motto: do not interfere with another to go his way, but go your own. Ericksonian hypnosis is like an ambulance, it offers the victim of love to say goodbye to affective addiction as soon as possible. The client is first asked to remember his grief, then prompted to let go of the loved one from memory, "dissolving" the emotional charge associated with him. In this way, you can quickly go through the mandatory and necessary stages of mourning: denial, anger, feelings of injustice, sadness and even depression, and then renewal. All this happens in less than six months.

How it works: change the perception of loss through metaphors. Assuming a comfortable position, plunging into a state of slightly altered consciousness, the client follows the therapist's metaphors. These metaphors show the loss of love in a different light and allow you to take it with more calmness. At this stage, the client is helped to "unanchor" the trauma and then new anchors are created for safer reactions.

A precaution in this technique: throughout the process, the therapist checks that regrets, desire, longing, resentment, or hatred towards the former partner have indeed been "deprogrammed". After all, hating him is out of the question (that would be another way to maintain affection).

Restrictions: some cannot be hypnotized. Hypnosis is often associated with suggestion: if an idea, an image, a belief is suggested to us, will the reaction to them be the same as if they arose on their own? Everyone has their own answer to this.

Psychoanalysis to recover

Maria Eril, psychotherapist

Motto: restore narcissistic integrity. Each of us is characterized by narcissism. It breaks down when the relationship breaks. Our social status is changing: we become loners. We are losing our usual support: next to us there is no longer the one who raised our self-esteem, said: “you look good”, “you are the best” ...

The period before a breakup is often also painful: we felt wrong, we heard reproaches and accusations. This is how integrity is lost. And psychoanalysis helps to restore it.

How it works: take your time and understand what is happening. If we set ourselves the task of quickly falling out of love, then we achieve the opposite, aggravating suffering with a new failure. It is better to prepare for the fact that we have a difficult period ahead. The more we take care of ourselves, the more likely we will be able to pass it safely. And although the desire to quickly finish the love story is understandable, trying to unwind and get distracted is not the best tactic here.

Some are looking for new sexual adventures, new partners. Often this experience makes the situation worse. Compared to the meaninglessness of random meetings, the value of lost relationships will increase. For the same reason, you should not try to continue your sexual life without a partner. Overall, masturbation is a positive experience, a way to get to know yourself better. But after parting, the images that arise in sexual fantasies are associated with the person we have lost. This can make it harder to access orgasm, and not achieving orgasm is another blow to self-esteem.

Therefore, it is better to turn to the inner child, to the pleasures that the sensation of the physical body gives us: to run, to walk. It is important to understand that "I am good on my own, without a partner, I fill the world, the world is more interesting with me than without me."

Restrictions: this method is for those who have the time and money. And also the desire to look for the origins of their problems. For those who do not want or are not ready to go through disturbing memories, the psychoanalytic method of free association will not be the most suitable.

Philosophy to console yourself

Julia Sineokaya, philosopher

Motto: parting with a loved one does not mean parting with love. Learning how to stop loving is impossible, and not necessary. Love is the greatest blessing. In the dialogue about love "Feast", Plato proves that love is much more important than being loved, love is the main gift of the gods to people, only love opens the way to gaining meaning, self-improvement, immortality. Undoubtedly, losing a loved one is a tragedy. It hurts when he doesn't love you back. It is even more painful when the feeling goes out of life irrevocably.

How it works: ask yourself questions honestly and answer them. One of these important questions is what exactly torments us: love or desire to possess, an unsatisfied sense of ownership. If you really love, your love cannot be taken away from you as long as you yourself are alive.

If a loved one is alive, but does not want to be with you, give him the freedom to be himself, and if possible, continue to do good for him without expecting a reward, because you do it from an excess of feeling, and do not lend and do not doing the exchange. The greatest joy is to do good to the one you love. You can do otherwise, say to yourself: "I do not know how to love those who do not love me." This formula can help, heal, and if it works, great! However, this will mean that your feeling was not true love.

To meet a person whom you deeply loved, with whom you spent a happy time, is the rarest gift that you will keep in your soul, having learned over time to draw from it not suffering, but strength. There is nothing eternal, this is the wisdom and tragedy of being. If your beloved has left your life or even left the world forever, this does not mean at all that love is dead - it will remain with you as joy, as a talisman, as something that will never leave and betray you, warm your soul in harsh times . Do not look for a cure for love - love! Love is the best gift that life gives us.

Limitations: philosophy teaches you to think and create your own image of the world, giving meaning to life. It only requires patience, which the Danish thinker Søren Kierkegaard said was necessary to become a person.

Text: Elza Lestvitskaya Photo Source: Getty Images

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What to do, what to remember, and how to survive grief due to a breakup with a partner, the loss of a friend or the death of a loved one.

There is probably no person who has never experienced a broken heart. We usually associate this concept with the end of a romantic relationship, but grief is not an easy thing. The death of a loved one, the loss of a job, a career change, the loss of a close friend can break our hearts. All this leaves us confused and feeling that the world will never be the same again.

Contents of article

There is no magic patch for a broken heart - it will take time to heal. But there are practices that help support yourself and protect your emotional well-being. Here are some recommendations from psychotherapists and

How to take care of yourself

Even if you don't want to worry about your needs, taking care of yourself is important. A broken heart needs strength - and so do you.

Allow yourself to grieve

There is no one “universal” grief that everyone experiences in the same way. So the best thing you can do is give yourself permission to feel what hurts inside: sadness, anger, loneliness, or guilt.

And although we are all different, perhaps close people will be able to feel our pain, recognize something of their own in it and support us.

Take care of yourself

It is easy for a broken heart to distract us from our daily needs. But grief is not only an emotional experience, it drains you physically. Scientists have proven that physical and emotional pain use the same pathways in the brain, so feelings cannot be considered separately from the body.

Physical exercise, deep breathing, and meditation can help you deal with your feelings. But don't beat yourself up if you don't have the strength to do all this - just move in small steps, one day at a time. And don't forget to drink enough water.

Let others know what you need

Everyone deals with loss differently. Someone prefers to close completely, others have enough circle of friends, others live through feelings, sharing them with a large audience on social networks. Decide how it works for you and how other people can help - keep your distance, be in close contact or more distant, etc.

Write down things that can help you (“card method”)

How it works:

  1. Make a list of what you need, including material and emotional support. This may include talking on the phone, hugging, helping with groceries, etc.
  2. Take a stack of cards and write down one item on each.
  3. When people ask how they can help, give them one of the cards or have them choose their own. Some people are not very good at comforting, but are brilliant in planning tasks, others are always ready to be in touch. Choosing from several ready-made items will allow your loved ones to understand how to help you, and it will unload your head, already clouded with worries.

Go outside

Studies have shown that just 2 hours a week in the fresh air improves our mental and physical health. It's great if you can take in the scenery while walking, but even just walking can help.

Read self-help books and listen to podcasts

Knowing that others have gone through and dealt with similar experiences can help reduce feelings of loneliness. Books and podcasts are a great way to accept and live your feelings.

Try to do something nice for yourself

Set aside time every day for something positive - watching a funny series or funny videos, meeting friends, reading a good book. Planning for moments that bring joy is vital to healing a broken heart.

Seek professional help

It is very important to talk about your feelings with others and not try to bury them in yourself. Easier said than done, so a meeting with a psychologist or psychotherapist may be helpful. Even two or three meetings may be enough.

Skills worth learning

Coping with grief is important, but it is also helpful to develop new habits and skills to help you overcome the loss.

Accepting your pain

Don't waste time feeling ashamed or guilty about your feelings, it's better to put all your energy into healing. Schedule 10-15 minutes a day to mourn well, this is normal in your situation. After a while, you may find that you want to do it less and less.


This means treating yourself with love and respect, without judgment. Think about what you would say to a loved one who is going through difficult times, how would you show him that you care? This is how you should treat yourself.

Unloading the schedule

When we are in pain, it can be very difficult to focus on business. Keep this in mind when planning your work or social workload, leaving room for "feeling breaks."

Cultivating new traditions

If you have ended a relationship or lost a loved one, it may turn out that a whole piece of life full of rituals and traditions has gone with him (holidays are especially difficult).

Enlist the help of friends and family to create something new to replace what has been lost—traditions and memories.

Keeping notes

Writing in a diary or private blog can help you recognize and record feelings that you are not ready to share with other people.

Chat with a support group

This could be a social media group, forum or online support group. Regular communication in a safe environment, sharing feelings and experiences with those who have experienced similar things, can be very healing.

Finding contact with soul and body

Experience of loss or change can separate us from ourselves. You can return contact with the soul and body through physical exercises, walks in nature or meditation practices.

Things to remember

Our society, in movies and songs, has distorted ideas about how recovery from loss works. That is why it is so important to have realistic expectations.

Your experience is important

The death of a loved one is an obvious form of grief, but it can also be hidden, with the loss of a friendship or relationship. Even a career change or the departure of children from home can cause it.

The popular phrase “Children in Africa are starving” has never made anyone feel better. No one exclaimed, “Why am I crying, my problems are not problems at all in comparison with the problem of world hunger!”

It doesn't matter why you hurt, what matters is that you hurt. These feelings affect your life.

It's not a competition

It's natural to compare your experience with other people's, but grief is not a competition.

You can lose a friend to death, or you can lose a friendship, and the feelings will be very similar: you have to learn to live in a world without important close relationships.

No expiration date in grief

Grief is not the same for everyone, it does not have a timetable like a train. Avoid those who say "it's time to move on" - you have the right to heal for as long as you need.

You can't avoid pain

No matter how hard it is, you have to go through it. The more you delay acknowledging your pain, feelings, and emotions, the further recovery is delayed.

Sometimes feelings will start to roll over

As the experience of grief develops, the intensity of sadness will also change. Sometimes it will be soft waves coming and going, and sometimes feelings will overwhelm you, without any control. Don't judge yourself for the way your emotions show up.

You will have periods of happiness

It is perfectly normal to feel moments of joy even when you are sad. Focus on the present and allow yourself to accept the good things that are happening in life.

If you are experiencing the loss of a loved one, happiness may be accompanied by feelings of guilt. But joy is very important in order to move forward, and forcing yourself into negativity will not change the situation for the better.

It's okay to feel abnormal

Even if you do your best to heal your broken heart, sometimes there will be bad days. Take them for granted - you will continue healing tomorrow. It's normal to feel abnormal from time to time.

You'll need time

Don't expect your pain to go away before it's all gone. Try to accept the new reality and the fact that you will need time to process grief and heal.

What can you read?

Books help to distract and heal a broken heart, especially if they are personal stories about how other people experienced grief. Here are some stories that might help.

  • Strayed Cheryl — Beautiful little things. Inspirational stories for those who do not know how to live on
  • Lamotte Ann Small victories. How to Feel Happiness Every Day"
  • Joan Didion "The Year of Magical Thinking" Joan Didion
  • Nat Tit "Lotus grows from mud. How to transform suffering into happiness"
  • Brown Brené "Gifts of imperfection. How to love yourself just the way you are"

Have you had your heart broken?

Unfortunately, the hard experience of loss can change our lives forever. But pain follows light, so it's worth keeping moving forward.

Learn more