Bye Bye Blackbird: Letting Go.


These are quotes from the most helpful article online that I've found about healing yourself and moving on after the ending of a difficult relationship, all courtesy of this article on Belief Net. I need these here to remind me. And I hope they can help someone else.


Letting Go of What Was
We can get relief from our nostalgia for a passionate love by remembering the intensity of the memory does not hold some great truth about the relationship’s sacredness. Remember, what fueled the attraction may not have been love, but your soul’s desire to heal the past.


Purge the Merge Urge

Subliminally, people in love promise they will meet all of each other’s needs while having none of their own. (Like mommy did!) We long for the feeling of fullness again, of merged egos. Getting free means understanding that the completeness you felt with your past love echoed a memory from infancy. Had the relationship continued, you would have seen boundaries snap back in place with the inevitable reestablishment of reality. No one would have made you feel that high forever.


Are You Romanticizing
Brain scientists now recognize that nearly 20 percent of us suffer from “complicated grief...One of the hallmarks of complicated grief is a persistent sense of longing for the lost one and a tendency to conjure up reveries of that person.” The persistence of a romanticized memory contains an addictive element but the element is not in the former relationship, it’s in you. A realistic assessment is empowering. Keep a cheat sheet of unflattering truths and refer to it when you slip into dewy daydreams. It is easier to let go of a human than a hero.


There's No Such Thing as One and Only
Repeat this 20 times. Ask yourself whether deep down you believe that remembering the relationship preserves it in some way. Embrace the reality that longing does not connect you and write a new belief code: "This is a person of great worth, but not to me. Each of us probably has 10,000 people we could feel a similar connection to---don’t mythologize as “one and only” someone who actually might have been unremarkable.


Your Brain Speaks Body Language
Your brain believes your body, sort of a reverse of the placebo affect. Don’t talk about the old relationship, don’t ritualize it, don’t note anniversaries, or send mental messages. Your brain will notice how healthy you are and deepen those neural networks until they become routine.


Turn to Creativity
One of the best balms for emotional wounds is creativity, which is different from staying busy. Creativity is deeply engaging. It fills you from the inside out.


Read it Right
Swap longing reverie for gratitude—by whatever means you can. Something to look forward to—a ritual you enjoy. Books work best because they are intellectually captivating and pull you into the moment. Best book to get? “How to Break Your Addiction to a Person” by Howard Halpern.


Exercise to Exorcise
Go to the gym regularly, or go for a run. Regular exercise keeps your endorphin levels high and keeps you from falling into melancholy memories.


Shut the Door on the Uninvited Guest
Practice separating your “self” from your “thoughts.”  Say, “Thanks, Mind, for the boring and obvious update.” In other words, respond without resistance—a mental yawn.


Disarm with Charm
When thoughts come unbidden replace them with neutral, factual thoughts, again offering no real resistance. Or, put distance between yourself and persistent memories. Add words in front of them like, “Oh, I’m having that thought about __again.”   “Would you look at that! I’m aware that I’m thinking about ___again.”You are neutralizing your own knee-jerk reaction.

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