I was a hermit for years of my life as I struggled to make peace with letting go of my ex.
I wasn’t one of these people who said live and let live after my divorce was over. I was going to hold onto that relationship to the bitter end of time while my ex moved on with her life, started dating, and got married within a few years.
I wanted to ruminate endlessly, re-live the pain, and beat myself up for all the things that I had done to screw up that relationship. I wanted to suffer and criticize myself for all of my misdeeds. I wanted to punish myself for every single thing that I had done wrong.
When you’re not letting go of your ex, you see yourself as a criminal and perpetrator and see your ex as an innocent bystander and victim. I did all the misdeeds, and she was perfect, or so my mind thought. It never considered that she might have been as much at fault as I was in the relationship. My mind didn’t entertain the possibility she contributed half to what went wrong.
The comfort of not letting go
I didn’t intentionally plan on living in the past for years of my life. I was looking for answers and trying to find a way to let go completely. It took me years to do this, and I tried coaching, spirituality, personal development, church, and so many other kinds of practices. Some of these worked, and some didn’t.
Yet I think the thing that was keeping me stuck for a long time was that deep down; I didn’t want to let go at all.
Huh? You may be scratching your head. Why not?
It’s going to be odd for me to say this, but I didn’t’ want to let go because if I let go, I would have to start on a new life, and that was scary as hell.
I wanted to be protected by the past. I didn’t want to venture out into new relationships. I didn’t want to be vulnerable again. I didn’t want to date again or meet new people again. I didn’t want a new life because the old one felt so comfortable.
Do I regret this decision? Absolutely! I wasted years of my life when I could have just moved on, found a new partner, and enjoyed the next few years of my life post-divorce.
Instead, I stayed home and out of having a social life to mourn and cry for a lost and broken love. I suffered, grieved, struggled. I took Eat, Pray, Love adventures, found myself in spiritual retreats, and went all over the world looking for ways to let go of my past.
Maybe a part of me was punishing myself for my misbehavior in the relationship too. I didn’t feel worthy or deserving of getting my life back. So, I stayed stuck in the past, ruminating about the pain and sadness of that old relationship.
You’re here for a reason.
If you’re reading this and having trouble letting go of your past relationship or letting go of your ex, consider if you’re not letting go because it’s much more comfortable to remain in the throws of your past relationship.
If you’re stuck in heartbreak and loss, you don’t have to go out. You don’t have to date. You don’t have to learn how to date. You don’t have to ever open a dating app account. You don’t have to move forward. You don’t have to open your heart again. You can stay stuck and comfortable for years. Forever maybe.
You can stay stuck in the past, marinating about what had gone wrong. You can blame your ex, blame yourself, and blame everyone else in between. You can analyze, criticize, and examine every part of your life in the past.
It may not feel great to rehash your life, but it sure the heck beats venturing out and starting a new life.
Except if you’re here on this blog, then you know that you’re not trying to stay stuck and angry with what happened. You’re trying to get out. You’re trying to break free of the past and get your life back.
Yes, if you’re reading this, no matter how much your desire to keep your heart closed and remain comfortable, I am assuring you that you want to let go. You want the life that’s available for you. You don’t want the pain that comes with it.
A plan to let go
You’re also not letting go of your ex. What do you to let go? If I was to simplify the process, here are 4 things that you must do for letting go of your ex:
- Grieve the relationship, process your emotions and find closure for the past
- Get to the root issue that’s keeping you stuck and work on healing it
- Release the self-blame and guilt that you may be carrying around from the past
- Rebuild your self-worth and have a life plan going forward.
You can keep reading blogs on heartbreak and grieving, but if you don’t do the work, you’re going to be here forever. I would love your friendship, but I love you more, so I want you to stop reading and get on with your life.
I want you to have a happily ever after, and I know that you want that too. You don’t have to find that in another love, but you can fall in love with your life.
Life is short. The pandemic is long. Don’t wait for the pandemic to pass. Don’t wait for another year of your life to go by. Work on letting go now.
I want to help you if I can. Let’s do the work. My first coaching session with people usually involves identifying the root of what’s keeping them stuck in the past. After the root ritual, we work on finding healing, closure, and acceptance that the relationship is over.
It’s time to stop reading about letting go and actually let go once and for all. Your future will thank you for it.
If my words have resonated with you and you’re ready to get your life back, please reply to this email or sign up for coaching here.