Whether “the heart was made to be broken” or not, breakups are rough – regardless of what Oscar Wilde would have us believe.
It takes 11 weeks to feel the benefits of a breakup, according to a study in The Journal of Positive Psychology.
But how do you do it without the cliché of sinking into a Ben & Jerry’s–shaped hole of distress?
We’ve rounded up the best scientifically proven advice on mending a broken heart.
Cry a little, cry a lot. Cry a whole Justin Timberlake river if you have to.
When a relationship comes to a bitter end, it’s important to acknowledge what went down and yes, often this involves embracing the waterworks.
Not only has shedding a tear or two been proven to lift one’s spirits – but various studies suggest that taking time to think about a break up can help heal the pain faster.
One in particular found that those who had “thoughtfully reflected” on the split felt less lonely and had an easier time moving on.
Don’t dilly dally over whether or not you’ll want to see what they ate for lunch one day, one of the joys of modern day living is that you can quite literally delete someone from your life in a matter of swipes.
Unfollow on Facebook/Twitter/Instragram/Pinterest et all. There is no reason for you to be hankering over your ex’s social media feeds. A 2012 study found that out of 464 participants, those who remained friends on Facebook with their exes experiences greater levels of distress and lower personal growth.
Do you want your dastardly ex to lower your personal growth?
Didn’t think so.
Talk, talk and then talk to someone new
Blabber to your best mate, prattle with your pals, gossip with your gynaecologist, if you have one of those.
Ultimately, keeping things bottled up will only lead to bigger problems in the long run. Give everyone in your life the full post-apocalyptic debrief until they can bear it no more.
When they stop bringing you ice cream and start telling you to build a bridge and get over it, you know it’s time to Taylor Swift it i.e. “shake it off” and find yourself a new lover.
Besides, a 2014 study found that those who “rebounded” into new relationships after a break-up experienced better well-being than those who remained single.
A fairly obvious commandment, but important nonetheless.
Write about it
Not necessarily in a pretentious “I need to tell the world about how awful you were to me in a really clever, witty, euphemism-riddled blog post” kind-of-a-way.
The benefits of writing – or “journaling” as our US comrades call it – during times of torment are widely documented. In addition to helping you come to terms with your thoughts, writing about your break up could help reduce stress, anxiety and allow you to solve problems more efficiently.
It worked for Adele…