After a long-lasting relationship and painful breakup, you’re likely experiencing rage, resentment and anger.
Or you’re liquored up, spending your days searching for the most exquisite (i.e., high-calorie) ice cream you can find and experiencing too much enthusiasm about Season 2 of the Marvelous Mrs. Maisel.
If you’re like me, once all those feelings disappear, you will feel overwhelming emptiness, loneliness and sadness. Liquor and rebound relationships can hide the pain for only so long. Ice cream and Roseanne last for only 26 minutes of your life at a time.
Even if you spent all your time fighting with your ex, you’ll find yourself in a painful spot now without him or her in your life.
At least with your ex, you knew your place in the world. You knew why you were here and you knew how to play the part of a couple. Getting through day-to-day life with a partner was so much easier. You felt some certainty, comfort and peace in knowing that someone was waiting for you at home, ready to binge watch “The Crown” with you.
The breakup and divorce have torn your life apart. You spiral from anger to loneliness, shame to feelings of being not good enough.
Rebuilding Your Self Worth
You hear the resounding sound of rejection and feel the pain of loss. A sense of loneliness and emptiness overwhelms you. If you’re not good enough for your ex, who are you good enough for? At this critical stage, you should start working on your self-esteem and wholeness. Your task in life is to become more fully you.
Here are 10 daily practices for rebuilding self acceptance and self worth.
1. Remove the crutches.
As I mentioned, ice cream, Mrs. Maisel, rebound relationships and hard liquor are only temporary solutions. To understand yourself and get to wholeness, you must release the crutches that prevent you from achieving self-discovery and self-knowledge.
2. Stop clinging.
Your mind wants to cling because it doesn’t want to feel pain. Even if you were in the worst relationship in the world, even if you married someone who was like a character from “Jersey Shore,” you still don’t want to break up.
You still want to party it up with your ex on Seaside Heights, no matter how much you despise each other and no matter how broken the relationship is. You release the clinging by becoming aware of it. You awaken to the fact that it has nothing to do with your ex; it has to do with your fear of being alone and by yourself.
You’re ok with your ex. You’re not ok with being by yourself.
3. Allow these feelings to wash over you.
Put a hold on the merlot and let your feelings wash over you like water. Less drinking, more experiencing the feelings you’re going through. Don’t stop yourself from feeling. Get rid of the habits and people that prevent you from going to the dark place and experiencing unwanted feelings.
4. Identify these feelings.
It’s helpful to label and become aware of the feelings. Each time they arise, welcome your feelings like familiar partners and long-lost pals. Allow them to become a comfortable part of your life. Acknowledge that the feelings are there to comfort, help and guide you.
Your feelings will no longer scare or bully you.
5. Check in with your spiritual nature.
You don’t have to move to Nepal or Bhutan and go on a 60-day silent retreat for spirituality. Spirituality could be walking the dogs. Spirituality could be smiling. Spirituality could be acknowledging the human-ness of a stranger.
What is that non-alcoholic activity that touches your soul and makes you feel like you’re floating on a cloud?
6. Feel goodness, love and completeness from within.
You may turn to religion and God to feel complete. You may turn to nature and the birds chirping to feel the love. Whatever it is you’re seeking, know that it’s within you. You must speak to yourself differently, tame your feelings and become kinder to yourself. Within your mind and body, you must create an inner sanctuary where you treat yourself with love and kindness.
7. Create a daily habit of accessing this inner space.
Daily habits are essential to self-love and acceptance. This is not a once-in-a-lifetime change. You don’t just become ok overnight.
It took years of mental and emotional sabotage for you to downgrade yourself and lack self worth. It’ll take days and months to build yourself up. Create daily habits of going within, accessing your feelings and allowing your spiritual nature to flourish.
8. Use this inner love practice and affirmations to feel enough.
You can use a gratitude practice to feel better about yourself. You can use a practice of service and giving to feel better. You can use nature and spirituality to do the inner healing.
Simple self-affirmations or written words of affirmation can also help. Your mind beats you down every day. Do the opposite. Use words and journaling to uplift yourself. Use words of affirmation to remind yourself of how worthy and complete you are.
9. See yourself as part of the whole.
By yourself, you may feel alone and out, but you’re part of the greater universe. You know this is true, but you often forget.
How can you be alone when you are the fabric of everything?
If you were a button on a blouse, you wouldn’t be separate from the blouse. You are part of it. If you recognised how connected and essential you are, you would never doubt your self worth again. You would never feel alone again because the entire universe is on your side.
10. Remind yourself of everything you’re grateful for.
To combat loneliness and shame, you must shift your mindset and frame of mind. Instead of focusing on thoughts of loneliness and feelings of being not enough, flip the predominant thoughts in your mind.
This is where a gratitude practice can transform your life. If you can acknowledge what’s going for you and what’s enough about you, you will have less time to worry about what isn’t there. We often spend much of our time on what’s wrong, not what’s right.
You’re looking for what’s going against you, not what’s going for you. Look for the wholeness, uniqueness, fullness of your life and you will continue finding it.
Get intentional and conscious about looking for what’s working in your life and what’s whole about you.