While there is no denying that physical hurts can be life-shattering, turning your whole world upside down, many of us struggle to see that this isn’t the only pain that we may face in our daily lives. When someone hurts you deeply on an emotional or mental level, that pain can be equally as harmful (if not more so) calling the decisions in your life into question, holding you back from your daily activities and even working to sabotage your efforts to succeed in life.
Robbing us of our happiness and joy, these hurts can leave us feeling hopeless, angry, guilty, depressed or overwhelmed.
While you may not be sporting a cast from a broken bone, or moving about in a wheelchair, it is important that these pains are given the adequate time, attention and energy to heal, releasing us from their harmful grasp. This can only happen by first acknowledging the power that they hold over your life.
Working through an emotional hurt can be confusing and challenging, a time that is full of complex emotions and personal struggles. It won’t be easy, but recovering and rediscovering your joy in this world is completely worth it!
Here are 11 tips to recover from emotional pain:
#1 – Validate Yourself
Throughout this time, you may question the feelings that you are experiencing, or attempt to deny them. In order to heal from your pain, you must first give yourself to feel and grieve, and acknowledge that what you are feeling is real. It is only by feeling these emotions that you can heal from them and move forward.
#2 – Don’t Force It
In your efforts to recover and put this pain behind you, you may be trying too hard and ultimately causing a setback in your own recovery. Recovery needs to be natural, don’t force it. This may take longer than you were hoping for initially, but it will avoid adding to it.
#3 – Draw on Happy Memories
If you are facing a difficult or emotional time, take the time to look back on better times in your life. Remind yourself that this world isn’t all pain and heartbreak, in fact, you have experienced times of great joy. Remember how you felt in that moment, and try to recreate the feelings for now, knowing full well you will feel them honestly down the road.
#4 – Apologize
If the hurt that you feel is something that occurred at your own hands, or at least is perceived as having occurred at your hands, then you may be holding onto an incredible amount of guilt. Dwelling on this guilt, and holding onto it, will only continue to hurt you moving forward. Instead, allow yourself to apologize – to anyone that you feel you own an apology for the situation, including to yourself. You will feel a great weight off your shoulders.
#5 – Stay Aware
It can be difficult when going through a difficult time to keep your mind on the here and now. Instead you may find that your thoughts and emotions are lost in the past, focused on the difficulty that you just endured. Don’t deny your feelings, but focus on what you are experiencing right now and how to best manage it for your own mental and emotional wellbeing.
#6 – Focus on Your Strengths
When you are going through a difficult time it is easy to get wrapped up in the negativity and begin to nitpick all of your flaws and weaknesses. Instead, counteract this harmful way of thinking by focusing on the strengths that you possess and the good things that you bring into the world. Each and every one of us is blessed with incredible gifts to share with the world.
#7 – Stop Running in Circles
If you continue to focus on the pain itself, the cause of the pain and the struggles that you are currently facing you are building walls around yourself, trapping yourself and your pain in a confined space. Instead, allow yourself to look beyond the pain at the world around you and all the reasons that you have to smile. This will provide you with the peace and relief that you need to make it through the darker times.
#8 – Practice Forgiveness
It is said that holding onto a grudge is like drinking poison and hoping that it will hurt the other person, and this couldn’t be truer. If you are holding onto hurt from your past, you are ultimately hurting yourself. Instead, learn to forgive those that have hurt you, and, most importantly, learn to give yourself for the role that you believe you played in what happened.
#9 – Be Patient
Recovery doesn’t happen overnight. You need to give yourself the necessary time and energy to work through your pain before you will be able to come out the other side. Any step, no matter how small, in the right direction is important in your recovery and should be celebrated. Understand, also, that you may experience setbacks, that’s normal. Continue pressing forward and know that you can do this one baby step at a time.
#10 – Ask for Help
Your friends, family and loved ones ultimately WANT to help you, but they may not know the best way. Take the time to not only ask for help, but to specify what you need. Maybe you need someone to come over coffee, or a friend to just get you out of the house. They really do want to be there, you just need to provide them with a little guidance to allow them to.
#11 – Practice Self-Care
Make some time in your schedule to do the things that you need to in order to feel a little bitter. It may seem silly because you are only bringing yourself happiness short term, but these small moments are where you will find your strength to keep going. Whether it’s a hot bath, reading your favorite book or curling up to watch movies rather than going out, treat yourself from time to time.