Have you ever been in a relationship you know isn't going to work, but don't know how to break it off?
If you've been in this situation, we speak to relationship coach and founder of Corporate Cupid Renee Brown for her top ways to break up - the right way:
Leaving a relationship can be one of the hardest things you ever do, since you’re essentially leaving your former life behind. There’s often a grieving process as you come to grips with losing your partner and former life, and with this process comes multiple waves of emotions, which due to their intensity may make it difficult to stick to your break up plan.
This is one of the primary reasons people stay in unhappy and unhealthy relationships - it’s just too hard to get through the first stage, so you go back to what you know best. Alternatively, you may be staying in a relationship because you don’t want to hurt your partners feeling by breaking up with them and stay committed but remain unhappy day to day.
Unfortunately, this becomes the break up cycle. You leave, get overwhelmed and return. Once you return there may be the addictiveness of that reconnection stage with your partner. All is forgiven, forgotten, and the reconnection love hormones keep you in a satisfactory state making you think that this time round it will be different, so you stay. This cycle can go on for years, or even decades in some relationships.
Have an exit plan
To successfully end a relationship and the negative patterned behaviour that keeps you from going back you need to plan your exit strategy. Prepare yourself. Have things in place that will secure you and your emotions once you leave, making you feel safe. Make a plan starting day to day, then week to week and then month to month. Start with short term goals at the beginning so you feel like you’re progressing, as those feelings of achievement help build confidence and certainty whilst on your new path. So, if you’re looking to end a relationship here’s ten helpful steps to break up and stay focused on you:
1. Set up a time to genuinely tell your partner your feelings within the relationship and your willingness to leave.
2. Have your reasons ready to go and give genuine answers to validate your relationship departure. Make sure you are present and fully available to your partner throughout this process.
3. Implement your break up plan and stick to it like it’s your new bible. When you get off track simply revert to your plan and resume the process.
4. Find a support network of friends and family that will encourage and support you throughout your new journey. Share your break up strategy or plan with them so they can hold you accountable when you feel like going back to repeating the break up cycle.
5. Identify clear boundaries with your ex after the break up. Let him or her know when it is no longer appropriate to text, call or communicate and that both parties need to accept and move on.
6. Use the power of positive thoughts. Keep reminding yourself of the reason why you left and what you have to look forward to within your future. Eliminate negative thought patterns that associate you with your old relationship behaviour, and create new positive patterns that inspire and motivate you to keep moving forward and create new positive behaviour.
7. Make a new network of friends. Associating with friends of the ex during the break up period can provide you with hurtful information that may suspend your progress. Get social and find new friends, new environments and new experiences.
8. Exercise and pay attention to your physical health and wellbeing. This is a time to focus on yourself, inside and out. Get active, set physical goals that create high levels of self-worth and confidence.
9. Trust yourself. Listen to your intuition and let it guide you.
10. Ask for help. If at any time you feel you need professional guidance or coaching don’t be afraid to ask for help.
This part of life and relationships is the most difficult to overcome, but where there is pain there is opportunity for growth and strength within your personal development. You must always know that you honoured this chapter of your life. Now it’s time to start the work of moving on, and the writing on the new chapter of you.