I recovered from a broken heart. Not a "hurt" heart. Not a wounded heart. A truly broken heart. The man I had been deeply in love with, and believed was my life-partner, was not in love with me.
Because I believe that we do create a large part of our personal realities, I decided to take an active part in my healing process. I hurt too deeply to simply leave it to "time". Here is my seven step heartbreak recovery program.
1. Make a conscious decision to heal.
The first very important step is to make a conscious vow that you will heal your heart as quickly as possible. You must want to be on the "other side of lonely".
Sometimes our conscious intention is overshadowed by our unconscious desires. As an example: if you're trying to lose weight, and restricting carbs, fats, or calories, a part of you is inspired, committed, and excited to see yourself 10 - 20 lbs. lighter. At the end of the second week, another voice within begins to take more prominence within your consciousness. "I don't want to go my whole life without eating pizza", it says. Or, "This is way too much of a struggle!! I really should learn to accept myself as I am."
Another example would be if you are trying to create financial abundance but a part of you believes that you might be enticed to lose your values if you were really rich, then it is unlikely that you'll ever be able to create any kind of lasting financial success!
If part of you wants to heal yourself, but other parts want to hold on to the pain, recovery may then be slow. The best way to find out what's deep inside is to close your eyes and ask yourself.
The answers that come from the various aspects of self may seem very illogical, or just really silly! It's important to let all of your emotional thoughts and beliefs be expressed. You'll see shortly how nutty some of my inner voices have been! The whole point is that if you don't know what's inside of you, how can you work with yourself to create your dreams? If part of you is holding you back, communicate with it and offer alternatives and solutions that appeal to all of those little, but important aspects of your Self.
Before I began my program for healing, I sat in bed one night, propped up by my pillows, my notebook on my lap. To be sure that all parts of me wanted to proceed with ending my suffering, I closed my eyes, took a few long, slow deep breaths, and asked my own subconscious,
"What might be the benefits of hanging on to this pain?"
I was truly surprised to receive two immediate responses.
"If I move past this too quickly, he may call and want me in his life, but I'll already be over him. Then I really will lose him for good." (This part of me doesn't want to believe that it's really over, and wants me to remember him, just in case!) and
"The pain will remind you that this was an important lesson that is not to be taken lightly. You were aware of the repeating behavior from his side, but kept hanging on and hanging on, anyway. You did not listen to your own inner wisdom!: (This part of me wants me to feel the pain so that I don't repeat this pattern with any future loves.)
Those were my subconscious beliefs about the benefits of suffering. Yours could be completely different, but just as "creative". You may believe that if he (or she) hears through the grapevine how dramatically you are suffering, he will come to his senses and realize that he could never love anyone as much as he loves you! (Yeah, right!)
All parts of you must be willing to move on if you want a speedy recovery. Do this simple exercise. Honor the thoughts that are expressed, learn a little more about yourself, and be willing to move into alignment with your new goal of healing.
2. Nurture yourself on every level.
Treat yourself kindly! Go to a restaurant that you've been wanting to try. Ask your best friend to join you. Try one of those chocolate truffles that you've been resisting. Go to bed early with a great book. Treat yourself to a massage. Give yourself lots of messages that you are a wonderful person who deserves to be treated well.
Exercise! When you're depressed and gloomy, nothing gets the energy moving (and your mood with it) as quickly as a good work-out. Exercise nurtures your body by giving it the strength and vitality it needs to be healthy and strong. It nurtures your emotional self by leaving you with the radiant glow of increased energy and self-esteem. A good workout, walk, or session on your exercise bike leaves you with the feeling that you can do anything! Try it - it works!
Be in Nature as often as you can. Walk in the park or hiking trails. Immerse yourself in the emerald light of the sun, as it illuminates the trees along your path. Listen to the songs of the birds as they call and answer, and stake territories. Life is all around you! Let its beauty fill the empty places inside. Open to the pulses and rhythms of the healing energies of the Earth Mother.
3. Use Visualization
Visualization can be a powerful way of moving stagnant energy and allowing healing to begin. The following is an example of many visualizations that I've created on the spur of the moment. Be creative and allow every hour of your day to become an opportunity for healing.
As the sun comes up in the Eastern horizon, stand at your window. Let the rays of light gently illuminate your heart center. Feel the liquid golden fire of the sun slowly driving out all of the darkness in your heart. Let this light expand throughout your being until you feel strong, radiant, and whole. Breathe... and begin your day.
As I was driving down the freeway, my favorite song of the moment came on the radio. I sang "Safe in the Arms of Love" by Martin McBride, and felt the arms of God/Great Spirit enfold me and hold me. I felt safe... loved!
At the place where she sings, "Gonna hang my heartaches out to dry," I visualized taking a blanket of dark energy from my heart center and hanging it on the line in the bright sunshine, under a brilliant blue sky.
I watched it flap in the breeze and slowly turn a soft pink color. Love-energy began to radiate from it, my spirit felt light and happy, and my imaging was complete.
Use symbols that suggest your personal feelings of love, safety, and happiness. You can turn darkness into light if you choose to!
4. Do something new!
This is the beginning of a new cycle in your life. Greet it with excitement! Now is your time to focus completely on yourself. What are the things that make you happy?
Get a catalog from your local "free university" or Adult Ed. Classes. Request a list of events from you local convention center. Sign up for something that you've always wanted to do. You'll meet new people, and be proud of yourself for exploring another aspect of the multi-faceted person that is you!
What did I do? I attended the Sportman's Show at our local convention center, and signed up for a women's Fly-fishing class. We had a glorious day on the Arkansas River in Salida, CO. I made many hilarious mistakes (as did everyone!) enjoyed being immersed in Nature, and had a blast! Caught 3 rocks and a bush! I learned a little bit more about myself - it's not the actual fishing that I enjoy, it's being surrounded by Nature. I'm just as happy to sit on the bank and read or watch the sky and water.
The point to doing something different and new is that you get a large clue that there is life outside of your past relationship. It lifts you out of your current situation and gives you something different to think about. This is a good thing!
5. Use plant-based vibrational remedies
Based upon the work of Dr. Edward Bach, flower essences are now commonly found in most natural food stores. Several companies have branched out from the original Bach formulas. The remedies help to relieve emotional and spiritual blocks of all kinds. "Rescue Remedy" is a Bach formula that contains the essences of 5 different plants that can be used in any kind of emotional trauma.
To relieve a broken heart, the flower essence Bleeding heart is advised. "Through this essence, the soul learns to fill itself from within, with strong spiritual forces, so that the capacity to love another is based on the ability to honor and nourish the Self."*
Borage essence is said to be an excellent heart remedy. "It is uplifting and lightening to a heart that is heavy with grief and discouragement."*
Homeopathics is a vibrational medicine that is the primary form of medicine in Great Britain and many European countries. Ignatia is the remedy for grief and despondence. Do not mistake this for the herbal, Echinacea!
At the deepest point in my emotional suffering, I manifested a flu virus that was making its winter rounds. I had not even had a cold in 2 and a half years! It settled in some people in the sinuses, others in the throat. This flu hit me right in the chest! My lungs became very congested and infected. For the first time since I was a kid, I was knocked flat on my back. I was very sick!
Knowing that I have an immediate hand in creating my personal reality, I asked myself why this was happening. The answer was immediate and obvious. Trouble in the lungs, many times reflects a state of grief, and I had plenty of it! My heart had been broken. When the flu virus had come into my personal universe, I had said on an unconscious level, "Hey! Over here! I'll take some of that!"
It was at that point that I realized I was literally making myself sick over someone who really didn't care about me. I determined to get past the fever and the illness as fast as possible. I began to ask myself other questions. What can I do to facilitate my recovery on every level? What remedies are available that might help me?
The homeopathic Ignatia was one of the first things I reached for. The potencies are often confusing, so let me clarify a little. The lower the potency, the more the remedy works on dense physical ailments. Higher potencies are a finer vibration and work on the emotional and subtle bodies.
* from Flower Essence Repertory by Kaminski and Katz
I took Ignatia-6x to help clear the vibration of grief from my physical body. I took 3 - 4 tiny tablets under my tongue as often as I thought about it (4 - 6 times per day). When my lungs were finally clear, I switched to the 30x potency to clear it out of my energy field once and for all.
I know that Rescue Remedy and Ignatia were effective parts of my holistic approach to healing myself!
These essences are made to be taken internally, but you can add a few drops to your drinking water, rub a bit directly on your heart center, or add a dropper to your bath water.
6. Keep track of your progress
Keep a daily journal of your feelings. Be real. At first, write about how the pain feels. A good cry or two can help to release the pain and allow the healing process to begin. On the other hand, too much crying can keep you stuck in a wounded emotional body and delay healing.
So... honor your feelings and express them appropriately. Focus on your determination to move past the pain. Write about your program for recovery. Write about the love and the beauty that are also a part of your life!
When you have had a good day, be proud of yourself! When it takes you a half hour after waking up to even think of him (when he used to be the first or second thought of the day) realize that you are making progress. Write it down!
Soon, you will think of him, but the pain will be gone. You'll be too busy thinking of the new things in your life to waste time dwelling on someone who didn't have the capacity to appreciate the unique and vital person that you are. Let your light shine!
7. Expect an ebb and flow
Your recovery may happen like the flow of the tides. Mine did. I would be doing so well, thinking, "Why on earth did I let myself get so emotionally attached to that man? Thank God, it's finally over!"
The next morning, I'd wake up and feel his presence so strong I could almost reach out and touch him. I'd be super emotional all day, and have to blink back tears for the first time in weeks.
Total healing usually doesn't happen all at once. It happens one layer at a time. All of life has a dark, and then a light; an ebb and flow. One layer at a time.
When a teary day or moment appears, know that it is normal and natural. It will pass! Acknowledge the emotions. Then find something to lift your spirits and shift the energy. You are responsible for your own internal environment.
Endless crying does not promote healing. Letting love into your heart in every way possible does! Choose your thoughts wisely!
How Long Will It Take?
How long will this program take? That's a very individual matter. It may take weeks, or it may take months. But, as with any goal, a plan of action faithfully followed, will help you get there much quicker.
So, love yourself... laugh at yourself... enjoy the dazzling beauty of each new sunrise. Take responsibility for your life and your dreams and never, never, never give up!
This is my seven part heartbreak recovery program in a nutshell:
1. Make a conscious decision to heal
A. Bring all aspects of yourself into alignment with your conscious intent
2. Nurture yourself on every level!
A. Exercise - move that depressed energy!
B. Connect with the healing energies of Nature
C. Treat yourself kindly
3. Use visualization
A. Be creative... use whatever the moment brings in a creative way
4. Do something new!
A. Explore something you've always wanted to do!
B. Meet new people
C. Celebrate this new cycle in your life
5. Use plant-based vibrational remedies
A. Flower essences to maintain balance
B. "Ignatia" - homeopathic remedy
6. Keep track of your progress - journaling for self-awareness
A. Be real! Write about how the pain feels. Don't repress anything!
B. Write about the steps you are taking for recovery
C. Expect to feel better!
7. Expect an ebb and flow. Honor the natural rhythms of the healing process.
Book by this author:
White Buffalo and the Rainbow Warrior
by Elisha Gabriell.
About The Author
At the age of 38, Elisha Gabriell went through a shamanic initiation in which spirit-teachers spoke about her life path -- the path of beauty and the path of joy. Her book, "White Buffalo and the Rainbow Warrior" details her experience of opening to the sacred Oneness of all life. Through Elisha's visionary experience, we come to understand that all of life is sacred. Visit her website at www.AwakenInt.com.