Principles to Live by While Going Through the Stages of Grief After a Breakup

By Mae Davies / October 28, 2014
Principles to Live by While Going Through the Stages of Grief After a Breakup

No one is immune from the pains of a lost love. Everyone becomes vulnerable to the hurt once a breakup happens.  No one is exempted.  As long as you have loved and the loving relationship came to an end, you will always undergo a difficult and painful process after the breakup. Going through the stages of grief after a breakup is one of the most difficult things that we can experience and must overcome.  The hardest part in dealing with breakups is to let go and move on with your life alone.  Letting go and accepting the reality surely needs a conscious decision and a lot of strength from us.  And as difficult as it may sound, we still have to do our best to survive the stages of grief.

But overcoming the breakup is, most often than not, easier said than done.  However, facing the stages of grief may become bearable if we have guiding principles.  Our principles are what move us to do something with our lives.  Having a rule, a belief, or an idea to guide you as you go through the stages of grief will motivate you to move on and will also help you bear every stage that you’ll have to go through. stages of grief after a breakup

“Pain is inevitable, suffering is optional.” – M. Kathleen Casey

I’ve always liked this quote because it sums up everything about overcoming the stages of grief after a breakup.  It’s true that going through these stages means pain, as pain will always be our natural and normal reaction during and after a breakup, but it doesn’t mean that we must let ourselves suffer.  We can still be in pain, but we can choose and will to either let this pain destroy us or to turn this pain into a creative way of self-discovery and have lessons because of it.

“Relationships are like glass. Sometimes it’s better to leave them broken than try to hurt yourself putting it back together.” -Author Unknown

Blaming ourselves for the breakup, begging our exes to stay and to come back, and trying to get the relationship back can only prolong the hurt that we are feeling and extend the time that we need to completely heal.  What’s done is done.  What’s over is over.  We have to accept this reality and move on with our lives.  Otherwise, we’ll forever be stuck with our past, with our hurts, and with our pains.

“Letting go has never been easy, but holding on can be as difficult. Yet strength is measured not by holding on, but by letting go.” -Len Santos

Letting go does not mean that we are weak; it means that we are courageous and strong enough to embrace the unknown and not hold on to the memories and the past.  Letting go requires a lot of strength from us, yet it’s only through not holding on that we can overcome the breakup and finally move on with our lives.

“Sadness flies away on the wings of time.” -Jean de La Fontaine

The 2 Week Diet

It’s true that after the breakup, you’ll feel sad and alone.  But just give yourself some time – some time to be alone and some time to undergo the stages of grief after a breakup.  Only time can really heal all wounds, so it’s very much important to have some time for yourself right after the breakup.  It might feel like nothing will get better as long as the pain and the breakup is still fresh, but I promise you that in time, all the pain and the hurt will go away.  Just give yourself some time to heal.

“You must make a decision that you are going to move on. It won’t happen automatically. You will have to rise up and say, ‘I don’t care how hard this is, I don’t care how disappointed I am, I’m not going to let this get the best of me. I’m moving on with my life.”  ― Joel Osteen

You cannot move on unless you make a conscious decision to move on.  Moving on starts from deciding to let go and to move forward and, thereafter, willing this decision into a reality.  Of course, acceptance of the breakup is necessary before you overcome all the stages of grief after a breakup.  But no matter how hard it may seem, you must propel yourself to do this.

“When one door closes, another opens; but we often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door that we do not see the one which has opened for us” -Alexander Graham Bell

And to sum everything up, a breakup entails closing another chapter of your life and moving on to the next chapter.  If you’re stuck with all the negativity, all the pain, and all the hurt, you won’t be able to appreciate the good that comes with it.  When we focus only on the negative aspect of the breakup, we don’t allow positive things to come into our lives.  That’s why we need to shift our focus and energy from the breakup, so that we can let other positive things happen, so that we can allow other good things and opportunities to come into our lives, and so that we can make ourselves happy.


About the author

Mae Davies

BA, MA Psychology (and Conflict Resolution), University of Cambridge (2007). With a decade of trial and error in psychology and 33 years of navigating my own complex (that's one word for it!) relationships with family, friends, co-workers and men, I hope I have some useful knowledge and skills to share with my readers about making sense of relationships and trying to become a better person every day.