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Riding Out The Breakup Rollercoaster
When a relationship ends, we can assume the hard part is over. However, a breakup can be an emotional rollercoaster. Brain scans can even show that a breakup highlights similar brain activity as when you are in physical pain. So, it’s true when they say love hurts.
As well as potentially experiencing physical pain with heartbreak, known as Takotsubo cardiomyopathy, your brain is likely to experience other symptoms of a relationship breakdown. Here’s what really happens to your brain during a breakup:
One day you’re feeling fine about the breakup. The next day you’re seeking out comfort food and sad songs. Unpredictable emotions are a significant and normal part of a breakup.
Close partners actually play a part in regulating your emotions. Like your circadian rhythm that manages your sleep/wake time, having someone close in your life can create regulation with your feelings, security and comfort as well as physical cycles such as hunger and sleep.
When you end a relationship, almost every cycle in your life can become dysregulated, so it’s no surprise that you feel up and down and out of sorts.
The best thing to do here is trying to catch your feelings with journaling. Reflecting on the changes in your emotions can help you take a step back. So rather than being on an emotional rollercoaster, you can reflect on your feelings with curiosity and acceptance.
Relationships flood the body with feel-good chemicals such as dopamine, serotonin and oxytocin. When you break up, you remove these feel-good chemicals that the body craves. In terms of brain chemistry, love is similar to addictive drugs.
When you remove these feel-good hormones, your brain will try to seek out a way to feel good again. This is where you might find yourself texting your ex, rebounding on Tinder or seeking feel-good dopamine from sources such as drugs, alcohol or comfort food.
Exercise can be a healthier way to get an endorphin hit. You can also release feel-good brain chemicals with social bonding. During a breakup, you may want to hide away on your own, but spending time with new and old friends can be a great way to prevent breakup withdrawal symptoms.
Recalibrate For The New Normal
Reminders of your ex can be everywhere, from pictures, gifts, locations and other sentimental aspects. This can plunge you back into missing your partner and wondering if breaking up was the right decision. When your brain sees these reminders, it will respond with craving and withdrawal symptoms.
Recalibration is the only way to help your brain move forward. Writing a list of the breakup benefits can help to regularly remind you of why you’re moving on. It can also help to create a voice recording which you can replay whenever you need to, reconfirming the positives that breaking up brings you.
It can help to regularly remind you of the logical reasons for the breakup, such as wanting different things and being on different paths.
Need Breakup Hypnotherapy?
If you need more support in getting through a breakup, I can help. I offer a bespoke breakup therapy plan to help you move on and move forward for long-term happiness. Find out more about how my breakup therapy works by booking your free call. Email email@example.com to book your complimentary call.