Breakup soup: A recipe for emotional soothing

This is for the times you hurt because you love. You can’t go over it, you can’t go under it, you’ve gotta move through it. The best thing you can do right now is be gentle on yourself and soothe. This too shall pass.

First and foremost, (VIRTUAL HUG). Imagine I am walking up to you with open arms and giving you a long, back-rubby kind of hug and maybe a little bit of rocking side to side. I am so sorry you are suffering, but I believe it’s because you have a big heart and you know how to love. So for what it’s worth, you are blessed in this way. There’s very little I can say to change how you feel and this part of life is just something you’ve gotta move through, so instead I am offering you a recipe for soothing. I know you feel like it’s the end of the world, but this part will be over soon. Yes, you are hurting, but it is short-lived. This hurt will pass and your heart will heal. Right now you are in pain-management mode. Know that things are much better in your life, than they appear. You are chemically compromised by the pain you are processing so it’s really important that you take care of yourself and force yourself to balance your chemicals as much as possible. It will move you through this time a lot faster.

As a rule, know that you cannot see reality for what it is because of this chemical compromise. Literally the chemicals that are flowing through you are distorting your view of the world and everything in it.

Right now, all you’ve got to do is pass the time while boosting your positivity chemicals as much as you can. This time will feel like it’s moving slowly but in reality, it will be over before you know it. What that means is you’ve got to take ridiculously good care of yourself and keep on chugging along.

Recipe for Breakup Soup


• Take long, deep breaths.

• Get lots of exercise.

• Get lots of sunshine, at least one hour per day.

• Reach out to friends and socialize with (non-romantic) friends as often as possible. Have people around you, even if you’re just watching a movie or reading in the same room.

• Immediately distract yourself from thoughts of your ex (who doesn’t deserve you!). Do not allow yourself to dwell on thoughts about them or what they’re doing in their life.

• Do not look at photos or social accounts of the ex or anyone new in their life. This is not deserving of your focus and it does not serve your healing. In other words, you are making it worse. It’s like twisting a knife in your heart until it’s a large, gaping wound. Resist that temptation if you truly want to heal!

• Make a rule for yourself to not listen to people who lie to you. (This is if you’ve been betrayed by your past love.)

• I strongly advise that you cut off all contact so that you can gain clear perspective and fully heal. Just make the decision to do so, and stick to it–even if you are cool with that person, you will keep the wound open if you keep them close right now.

• Watch comedy movies on repeat. Have them on in the background.

• Create a positivity playlist complete with happy songs that have nothing to do with your past with this person. For example, here is my “Happy” playlist on Spotify.

• Do happy dances to happy songs.

• Speak these words aloud to yourself, in the mirror: “I am okay. I am not alone, I am loved by many. I have friends, a life, a future that will be amazing and it will be much different from my life as it is, now. Things are much better than they seem. I will take care of myself. I will protect and love myself. I will move through this time and this pain will end.”

• Write to yourself and be a friend to yourself. As you journal, record values that you want in a relationship in the future (not a specific person). Think about what is most important to you to have in another person, for example: love, mutual respect, honesty, kindness, affection, attraction, commitment, etc.

• If you come back to the person you were with, immediately distract yourself from those thoughts. Try hard not to talk about them or retell stories about them. You must push yourself to focus on YOU and what you want, who you are, what you like–and not them/what they’re thinking/what they did or said or felt. That is not of your concern–you are what is most precious in you life. You are enough and you are valuable and lovable, just as you are.

• Occupy your mind and time with activity and friends and healthy practices.

The truth is:

• You are not alone. You are loved by many. You FEEL alone because you are chemically depressed and life pulled the rug out from underneath you, so you’re reeling at the moment.

• You are in pain, but it’s short-lived.

• You will not have to hurt like this anymore if you move past this point and take care of your own best interests. This experience will be a faint stain on a pair of your old favorite jeans one day, meaning one day you will be in love with someone who values you, appreciates you and is meant for you. That person will be committed to you and it will just happen on its own, because they will be “your one and only.” You will never think of this person you are hurting from now, but if they cross your mind, you will pause to think, Wow, I was so different back then . . .

Right now you have to focus on acting in your own best interests. Covet yourself and your love. Protect yourself from people who do not protect you and love you back.

• If you were betrayed by this other person and you’re still having feelings of longing, what I want you to do is focus on how angry this has made you. You should feel MAD at this person who did not value and cherish your body and soul. Do not, for one moment, feel affection for someone like that, as that is to negate the value of your person.

• If you’ve never been alone and this feels terrifying, know that it feels overwhelming but everything is actually pretty darn okay. Your chemicals are reeling which is why it’s important to do all those happiness practices. You cannot see reality for what it is when you’re chemically imbalanced. Do not judge your life until you are back to a rational state-of-mind.

Aside from that, the fact that you have been in relationships for most of your adult life is a sign that you must grow the bond you have with yourself and get to know “the real you.” Before you find “the one” you have to spend some time getting to know yourself, solo. Why? Because you likely don’t know who that person is anymore–it’s something that just happens when you get used to living as “half” of someone else. Often we find relief from any worry or problems we have by focusing on love and the thoughts of someone else. It’s like a painkiller for personal issues that we don’t want to face. So before you jump into another relationship–take time to get to know the real you, again. Before you can be able to choose the right partner, aka “the one,” you’ve got to love yourself and feel happy and stable as just yourself, by yourself.

Regardless of how it happened, breakups are some of the most painful times in a person’s life and when you’re suffering, it feels like it will never end. That’s absolutely not the case. It will end very quickly, but because it hurts, you can’t see the end yet. I know it’s hard, but keep moving through this time and medicate your brain chemicals.

In reality, that is what is hurting you the most–you cannot see your life for what it is, all you can do is feel the pain of this situation. So trust that it will fade and keep taking aggressive steps to support yourself and your heart. I will be thinking of you. I am sending you vibes of love and support and STRENGTH. This part of your life will pass and you will once again be happy, be in love, and be loved in return.

I hope this helped in some way, and as always, smile.


Sarah May B.

For my books and my podcast, visit the Teaspoon of Happy site.

Featured image via Flickr

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