How to hack your feelings after a loss

How to hack your feelings after a loss
June 3, 2020 Joy Iseki

Emotions can get in the way or get you on the way.

-Mavis Mazhura

 

The emotions we experience from painful or too much pleasurable events can sometimes leave us in a confused state, in the aftermath that we cannot remain in the situation that had caused these feelings in the first place.

Someone falls in love, and is finally happy that he has met the love of his life. Unfortunately, he experiences a breakup. And the whole thing becomes like a nightmare. To escape his new reality, he lives out the good part of the relationship in his head even after the death of the relationship.

How can he come to reality, and still be happy again without the relationship?

If you’re familiar with the adrenaline gush of being in love, you might understand how a breakup could often be interpreted as a possible cessation to our lifetime happiness!

Because of this, a break up can be very devastating emotionally. Not many people easily survive it, especially for the first few weeks after the announcement.

Some people often find a distraction to help them forget the memories that seems on a non stop replay in their head. Not a moment goes by without any of the beautiful moments they’ve had together showing up its face. It can be really frustrating!

A breakup from a marriage, relationship, loss of a good job and other things similar to this can be very hard to bear, especially with all of the benefits we’ve experienced from those moments things were fine.

As a result, we may experience an emotional breakdown from any of these life’s events.

The possible breakdown isn’t because we’re weak, or that we cannot move on from the event. We’re emotional beings. And past event become only emotions once gone. This means, we’re having to deal with more difficult-to-process emotions from the fallout.

Someone who loses a loved one can be overwhelmed with the memories of their lives together, that they may now assume it’s impossible at that point to continue to live without the deceased. From retrospect, we know this isn’t true. We are just hurting at that point from the thoughts of not seeing this person again.

Grieve isn’t only felt in the case of death. Even relationship breakups and marriage separations are like grieving something that was once alive.

Events like these tend to affect our mental wellbeing, and talking about it can be hard to express in words.

However, we must find a way to let go, such that we’re able to move on with our lives too. Because the dawn of every new day is for us to start life afresh again, no matter how dark the previous night was.

When we allow ourselves to get stuck in an event in the past, it means we’ve become fixated to that space in time. This is like living in the past, or not wanting the time to move on from that moment the event happened.

We cannot live in the moment while still stuck in the memories of our past events. This is why it hurts so much to remain that way. Because we weren’t designed to function so.

We must realise that we have the capacity to help ourselves cherish the beautiful moments we’ve had with these persons while we also learn to move on, as this is the best way through.

For grief issues that would usually involve the loss of a loved one, we can sometimes feel guilty letting go, because we fear that we haven’t grieved the person enough. Or in some cases, we’re afraid of what people would say about us for moving on so “quickly.”

There is actually no right or wrong way to manage your loss. But if the ways you choose to do it starts to affect how you live your day-to-day life, then it’s no longer serving your good, emotionally.

This is why I’ve written this post.

No matter how much we loved someone we’ve lost; whether to death or from an end to a marriage or dating relationship, we must find a way to move on with our lives, such that we’re no longer being affected by the memories from that experience negatively.

For all of these instances, contrary to most of our popular beliefs, it doesn’t have to take that long to overcome these losses. Except that we judge ourselves for making the decision to move on with our lives.

As an emotional wellness coach, I’m concerned about ways we can have an experience not leave us damaged emotionally because of our quest to hold on to the past.

We may suffer for the choice we eventually make, if we base our decision on what others would say about us, or judge ourselves for the willingness to move on with life after the loss.

It is because we’re often too focused on the “good” memories we’ve had with the lover that we assume them as impossible to move on from. This lopsided view is from not having a balanced awareness of the situation.

We have to admit that the person we were once in love with weren’t always right, didn’t always do right, and may not have always loved us rightly. We can remember the fights we had with them, the quarrels, and the misunderstandings. This isn’t to make the ex lover seem bad. No, it is to bring your mind to see the actual relationship holistically, since you’re suffering from being too focused on the good times you had only.

When these memories are balanced with all of the good times you’ve had together, rather than your only focus on the one sided part that had you fixated in the past event, you’re able to see more clearly what the relationship really was, and also understand better why you need to move on.

For the lost of a loved one, it’s similar too. But quite different, considering that they didn’t just cut off ties with you, as in the case of a breakup. They died. And you may never see them again physically. This is often the most painful part of death; the fact that we never get to hear their voice, see their faces or feel their bodily presence.

However, you must realize also that life is without vacuum. While at the space of grieving we often think we cannot move on without this loved one whose demise is affecting us badly. The truth is, something or someone will replace their place in time.

Now, I know someone may not like to hear that. But it’s the truth. What you’re feeling now, and the reasons you are hurting so much emotionally is because of what you’re thinking about their death.

If you want to move on, and not be too overwhelmed by the grief, you must choose to focus on something that tells you how life is this way. You have to remind yourself in the moment the grieve is beginning to affect your mental wellbeing that you can do without this person, even though it may be difficult, and that you’re willing to start doing so one day at a time.

You have to remind yourself that people must die for new ones to be born. And this happens to be your turn to feel the pain of the death of a loved one.

Again, remind yourself of how you’re not the only one experiencing this loss. More people are likely going through similar experience now, while in some places, people are rejoicing for the birth of new born.

This is the life of cycle we must embrace. It’s easier to move on with life against this backdrop.

Making the decision to continue to live your life in their absence while you honour their death isn’t selfish or a terrible thing. It’s the right thing to do. You must realize this.

This part is often what’s difficult for the deceased families, friends and lovers to decide on. Their failure to do so have led to more deaths to their own living than it has helped the deceased to rest in peace.

Ultimately, we have to come to the point in our lives where we realize that to a very large extent, we’re able to decide how we want to feel. This isn’t for all the time; it is to a larger extent of the time only. Think about this.

How you’re feeling about a loss is based on which part of the experience you’re so focused. If you’re feeling resentful, it’s because you’re too focused on the bad parts. If you’re too sad and assume yourself unable to live without another, it’s because you’re probably too infatuated with the experience.

Again, for any of the only one part that you’re focused, you may experience an extreme of emotions, which isn’t helpful to your emotional wellness.

Your goal is always to master the habit of creating a balanced view of the experiences. This will free you from the lopsided ideas affecting your emotional state.

A balanced view is always the way we’re able to truly experience an emotional wellness from past events, no matter how good or bad we had assumed them.

Click here to listen to the full podcast I did on this topic

 

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To your healing, love and fulfillment.

Joy ISEKI

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