How to Best Cope With a Break-Up

Going through a break-up can be rough…

You and your beau just ended things. You’re still trying to fathom what the hell just happened. Is it really over?? What? Seriously, what just happened?

All of the moments shared, the nights of laughter and cuddles, all of the fun and adventure…turns out it wasn’t enough. None of it makes any sense. How can you live a life where your beau isn’t by your side?

We’ve all been there, and have made it through that unthinkable mess. No matter how many times you go through heart break, it never gets easier. If anything, it gets harder. As we get older, we tend to have more meaningful relationships, too. With this, we invest more, we have future plans, and it feels nearly impossible to walk away.

A very good friend of mine was sharing with me how difficult it’s been to try and move forward after her break-up. She and her fiancé broke it off, and it’s been devastating. She and the person that committed to spending their lives together just bailed. We’re not talking about cancelling a dinner and a movie date here, we’re talking about walking away from forever.

Whoa. That’s heavy.  

So how do you make it through a break-up? Other than watching Dirty Dancing, and scream-singing at the top of your lungs to your favorite Dashboard Confessional songs, there are plenty of things you can do.

Check out my guide to best cope with a break-up:

1.Prohibit contact

I truly believe in a no contact policy. This was something I did with my last break-up, and it made things so much easier. Cut the ex out of your life, cold turkey. It can be difficult, but it’s well worth it. If you absolutely need to, replace the ex’s number with your best friends’. Any desire to make contact will be fulfilled by connecting with someone else that you love.

NO. CONTACT. POLICY.

2. Say goodbye to social media

Whatever social media platforms you two are friended on, DELETE THE EX ON ALL OF THEM. Seriously, you just have to. In order to move on, you cannot know what your ex is up to, where your ex is, or who your ex is now dating. Pressing that unfriend button will provide you with the space you need to start letting go—it will allow you to move forward. It really is the first step…

It doesn’t hurt to delete all of the ex’s family and friends too. Yes, there may be some mutual friends you still really like, and that’s fine. However, you might want to consider limiting what shows up on your feed for the first few months…

3. No cyber stalking

Seriously, no stalking. It is detrimental to your healing, and seeing things you don’t want to see will be very hurtful. Like, so unbelievably hurtful. Don’t do it.

4. Get out there

Whether it’s seeing your family more often, arranging dinner dates with your girlfriends, or joining a kickball league, get out there. Being social will help you remember that there is life outside of your failed relationship. It will also remind you of how much fun you can have.

5. New experiences

Go on adventures. Whether solo, with friends you’re re-connecting with, or new friends, just get out there and enjoy yourself. Life has so much to offer! When in a relationship for so long, trying new things that are outside of your comfort zone aren’t typically the norm. The newer the experience, the better.

6. Appreciate being single

Having the time to be single and flying solo is pretty rare, so enjoy it. Take it all in, utilize that time productively, and rediscover yourself. There’s nothing greater than focusing on your growth, your happiness, and your goals. Do you.

7. Find yourself

Ok, so listen up—this one is really important…

Take time to find yourself. While in relationships, we sometimes lose sight of who we are. Discover who you are as a whole, and not just as a half. What do you like to do? What makes you feel good? What’s on your bucket list? Do you want to travel? Cook? Fly a plane? Whatever it may be, get out there and do it. Push your limits, and figure out who you are and what you want…

8. Everything happens for a reason

We may not ever understand why certain things happen. What I know for sure is that everything happens for a reason. Life sometimes throws curveballs, and it’s usually because there’s something better on the other side. Go with the flow, and let life take you where you are meant to be.

9. Let it out

Whether talking to friends, seeing a therapist, or journaling, let it out. Part of healing is expressing your emotions. Whether through art, physical activity, writing, or talking, it’s all a form of expression. If you hold it all in, you’ll hinder yourself from truly moving forward. Not processing your feelings and working through the pain of a break-up can also negatively affect your future relationships. We all have the ability to cope in a positive and healthy way, and this really is a crucial step…

10. Love and forgiveness

While doing all of these listed above, don’t forget to love and forgive yourself. Often times, we blame ourselves for certain things. Remember, this break-up is not your fault. Sometimes two people aren’t meant to be together, and that’s okay.

Always, always, always, love yourself…

11. Take care of yourself

Above all else, take care of yourself. Be healthy—mind, body, and soul. Know that you have the ability to accomplish anything. You are enough, and you don’t need another half to feel whole. Remember, you are the priority.

Feel like some self-TLC will help you feel better? Check out some tips on how to better care of your body here!

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xx,

Paula

The Fear of Loss and How To Cope

Love and loss. Have you ever loved someone so much that you can’t imagine life without them? So much that living in a world where they no longer existed just wouldn’t make sense? I have. It’s one of the most terrifying thoughts, but even worse, one of the most horrible things to experience. So, the question is, how would one cope with the fear of losing someone they love? Let’s talk about it…

When I was seven, my family and I unexpectedly lost my mother. Not only that, but I almost lost my life too. While growing up, I was always close to others, but never allowed myself to get too close. As I entered adulthood, I realized that this needed to change, and I had to learn to cope with the fear of letting someone in, loving them, and then potentially losing them out of nowhere.

Obviously, this was all driven by trauma and anxiety. Nonetheless, it didn’t make those feelings any less real. And I’ve come to find that as soon as I stop worrying, and feel safe, something happens. So basically, my fear also kicks in when I’m happy and not constantly feeling worried. How is that a way to live, you might ask? Yeah, I ask that too…

Just this last week my boyfriend had gone in for a very simple procedure, however, he did it across the country. Per usual, I was feeling worried, but very hopeful that the procedure would be successful.

I woke up to a text that all had gone well, and my babe sounded like his cheerful, normal self. I felt so much better, and was able to finally breathe. Then, I wake up the following morning to a text that he had fainted and was now in the ER. Literally, my world felt like it flipped upside down.

I was able to remain calm and ask for all the facts, but working in the medical field allowed my mind to wander to all of the worst case scenarios. Is this really happening? How serious is this? What if something happens to him? OMG, could I lose him?

I literally couldn’t bear the thought of losing him. The fear kicked in. I was in fight or flight.

Flight was not an option because I’m not that kind of person. So, fight it was.

Regardless of how much fight I had in me, I felt helpless. The fact that I was so far away was literally killing me. But worst of all was knowing that sometimes bad things happen and there’s nothing we can do about it.

So again, that fear of losing someone important kicks in, and it’s stronger than ever. What’s next?

So rather than drive myself crazy with fear, I focused on these ten things:

Some things are just out of your control

This is just the way life works. We can’t predict everything, and we can’t prepare for everything. No matter what you are capable of, certain things happening is inevitable.

Worry only about the things you need to worry about

You’ll literally drive yourself crazy worrying about every possibility. Yes, there are things to worry about—finances, possibly losing your job, when the next earthquake is coming—I know it’s easier said than done, but you have to let go and say goodbye to those worried thoughts.

Live

Because you don’t know what’s coming, live. Live and love as though it were your last day on earth. Enjoy your experiences and the time you spend with your loved ones, even if they’re not always the most pleasant. Know that the time you spent with each person is valued and special.

Say I love you

Tell the people you love that you love them. Often.

Stay positive

Make sure to end a conversation or interaction on a positive note—if something were to happen to that person, would you regret ending things the way you did?

Talk it out

Share your thoughts and tell the people you love how much they mean to you. Share the things you love most about them. Tell them how much joy they bring to your life.

No regrets

Live life to the fullest—I know, so cliché. Make sure to live in a way that will allow you to be proud of how you treated others and yourself. Again, if your life ended tomorrow, would you have any regrets?

Make amends

Loss isn’t just about losing people that are actively involved in your life; it can be the loss of someone you haven’t spoken to in years. Make amends. Don’t let important relationships end on bad terms. If not on a positive note, neutrality can be a good option.

Let go of the anger

People make mistakes, and it’s okay to be upset and angry. But after a while, you need to let it go. Not only for the sake of salvaging the relationship, but also because holding on to anger is not the healthiest thing. Let go, forgive, and move forward. 

Don’t worry until you have to

 Yeah, just don’t do it…

If you enjoyed this piece, check my article on how the secret to happiness is letting go!

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xx,

Paula

The Election: Why Things Happen and How to Create Change

 How to Create Change and The Question “Why?”

Now is a time of change, and unfortunately, it consists of changes many of us are not onboard with. Why? Is a really important question here, especially during this election: WHY is this happening? HOW could this have happened? WHAT are the repercussions? HOW can I deal with this?  

Well, there isn’t an answer that fits all those questions, but there are ways in which you can make this transition easier for you and your loved ones. I know this is not something anyone wants to hear or do, but the first step is accepting the results of the election. That is now something that no one can change. The time for any alterations has passed, and even though there is still a great deal of resistance and anger, we all just have to accept it. This is now a reality—yeah, I know. Gross.

But acceptance is the first step to coping and managing an undesired change. Change comes in all shapes, forms, and sizes. Some big, some small. No matter the aspect in which change occurs, it is important to work around it, and do what’s best for you and the people in your life.

Here are a few ways in which you can make this shitty change a bit better:

1. Stand up for what you believe in

You are a human being with wants and needs, especially when it comes to biological, social, psychological, and gender related issues. Stand tall, and speak up for yourself. Always be who you are, but remember to present your perspective and also have the ability to listen to others. If we are fighting for our rights, and the right of all of our brothers and sisters, it must be done with peace, humility, and kindness.

2. Educate yourself on the topics you are passionate about

Have all the facts, and even take time to educate others. Knowledge is a gift, and a type of wealth that all should entitled to.

3. Let your voice be heard

Share your thoughts and opinions with others—you are intelligent, and the first amendment still exists. Exercise your freedom to speak.

4. Be part of the change

I am so proud of my friends who attended the Women’s March all around the country yesterday. In Los Angeles alone, there was an approximate number of 750,000 people marching. If that isn’t peacefully standing up for what you believe in, I don’t know what is…

5. This isn’t only about you, but about humanity

There are so many of us who may be fighting this change for personal reasons, but we should fight this for all of humanity. Yes, all Americans will be effected, but so will people around the world. Creating change is about more than just one group of people, but rather, for all mankind. (Man, I feel like an ad for Seven Jeans…lol)

6. Stay positive

However you decide to move forward, stay positive. Even in the darkest of times and places, light can be found. Even though this sucks, you will find a way to make things okay…

7. Most importantly, be kind

Be kind to yourself, and be kind to others. Battling change isn’t about a fight, but rather, about coming together with others in peace and standing up for what you believe in.

Spread kindness, spread love, spread positivity—it makes all the difference…

election | Donal Trump | create change | resist

**The photo above was taken in a jewelry store, and The Donald was literally wearing a suit of cash. Literally. Not much has changed since then…#truth

xx,

Paula

Stress and How to Overcome it

Stress can be super rough on the mind, body, and soul. Ever have one of those days where it feels like the sky is falling? You have countless things to do, and have no idea where to start? Yeah, that’s what every day at my job feels like. Even though the things I’m doing are “helping” others, the stress of it can potentially be harming me.

Having those days can create a lot of overwhelm and stress, however, you still need to figure out how to get shit done. It’s important to consider doing only what can be done that day—all while simultaneously managing other projects or cases.

There are many ways to overcome stress. Some more simple than others, some that can help instantaneously, and some that require a lengthy process and a great deal of time. The first step is trying to learn how to manage those mini episodes of tension.

Here are some helpful tips on how to manage stress at the office:

1. Take a deep breath

Deep breathing helps calm the body and also helps you center yourself. Because stress has the same effect on the body as the fight or flight response, your body is preparing itself for potential danger. Per Harvard University, deep breathing is a “relaxation response” that allows the body to fill with o2—this can slow your heart rate and normalize blood pressure.

Even if you need to step outside for a moment, engage in a breathing exercise and allow your lungs to expand. Take in all of the oxygen, and allow your body to feel the relaxation.

2. Put things into perspective

Remind yourself—of the positive reasons—why you’re doing your job. This will help you to put things into perspective, and allow your body and mind to process the reasons in which you continue to put up with this batshit crazy mess on a daily basis.

3. Stay Positive

You’re a baller. Remind yourself that you are good at your job. Sometimes we work on very challenging cases, with very challenging people. This can sometimes cause us to question our abilities and strengths. Remember how great you are at your job. If it will help, write down 5-10 reasons as to why you’re excellent at what you do—keep this in your desk, pocket, or purse so it is easily accessible.

4. Step back and assess the situation

Think: What about this is making me anxious? Is it time? Is it the number of tasks I need to get done? Is it because I cannot find a solution? Whatever it is, it’s okay. Take a step back and break it down.

5. Prioritize your biz

Break down your responsibilities. What is the most pressing item that needs to be completed. Which task has a deadline? Depending on where you work and what your responsibilities are, you know how to set priorities—basically, what is it that your company values and prefers to get taken care of first? You are capable of making smart decisions. You got this!

6. Time management

Set time limits. If you’ve prioritized the 7 million and 23 things you need to do, and there’s still too many things to manage in a single 8-hour shift, then you might want to consider setting time limits on each task. With this, if there are mini deadlines or specific planning that needs to be completed, you can arrange your time in a way that will allow for you to get to everything on your list.

7. Ask for help

 Sometimes our colleagues may have less work to finish than we do. If considered appropriate in your office, reach out to ask if anyone has some extra time to either partner up with you, or completely take the task off of your hands. Even if this is only for a few hours, or to get you to the next step, anything is helpful.

8. Know when to stop

Just because we are scheduled for an 8-hour shit, doesn’t mean that you only stay those 8-hours. Sometimes I find myself doing plenty of overtime. This is okay sometimes, however, it should not become a regular thing. Remember that you need to take care of yourself. Spending all of your time working is not congruent with the idea of self-care

9. Do something for you

Whether this is a daily or weekly thing, make sure to engage in an activity that you enjoy. As mentioned above, self-care is VERY important. When you are able to care for your mind and body, you allow them to rest and revitalize. With this, when you return to work you will be refreshed and productive.

10. Make work-life balance a regular thing

Self-care is so important all the time, not only in times of stress. Maintaining a work-life balance should become a part of your lifestyle. Know when to say no. Know when enough is enough. Be aware of burnout, and make sure that your mind and body are provided with the care that they need.

Be kind to yourself. Make yourself the priority…

xx,

Paula