What Nine Women Would Tell Their Younger Selves After A Breakup

Hindsight is always 20/20, but in lieu of speeding up time, here are some tidbits of wisdom from some of the incredible women we’ve interviewed on the blog.

1. Don’t Forget Everything Else

“First, this is not going to be your last or only heartache. Secondly, maybe now that I’m married it is easier to say this, but I recognize so much of the power of being happy with one’s self and realizing your own dreams. If you’re doing it next to somebody or with somebody in a really great relationship, then great, but at all times you should be doing that, so that if and when the rug gets pulled out from underneath you, you still have something to live for, focus on and care about…That would be my advice for my 18 year old self: don’t let love be all consuming in that you forget everything else. Try to keep a balance.” – Éva Goicochea, Founder of Maude

2. Know Your Own Value Outside Of The Relationship

“Maintain a sense of self and really know your own value outside of the relationship. I really lost myself in that relationship. While all my friends were doing fun stuff senior year of college, I spent most of my time traveling to Boston to see him or in my dorm room on the phone. If I could go back in time I would have had a lot more balance between the relationship and the rest of my life. And also, there is no reward without risk. Even though your heart’s been broken, keep putting yourself out there. I was so afraid of getting hurt again, that for years I only dated people who I knew liked me more than I liked them in order to protect myself. But if you want that Oh my God, how did I live my whole life up till this point without you stomach-flipping kind of love, you HAVE to be willing to take the risk to get hurt. Once I finally figured that out, I met my husband. I don’t think the timing was a coincidence.” – Daniela Tempesta, Therapist

3. C’est Pas Grave

“There’s a French saying: c’est pas grave, which literally means it’s not grave. It’s not gonna kill you. This saying is something I always remember. I hate being single. I wish that I had someone to share my life with, but I would have never obtained this life I have made for myself if I was in a relationship. So I would tell my younger self to chill and wait. To invest all of those years spent in a relationship on herself. I could have avoided a lot of pain if I listened to my dad’s advice. He told me to wait for love and focus on myself.” – Aurielle Sayeh, Creator

4. Trust Your Body

“Every mistake you make, every dark time, is all for a reason. So I would never tell myself to do anything differently, I would just tell myself to trust my body, my intuition, my instinct a little more. I think I had quite a few moments when my body was telling me to get out. You get your heart and your gut and your head all confused.” – Monroe Alvarez, GrlSwrl Founder, and Photographer

5. Focus On Self Development

“I would advise my 20 year old self to focus on my interests, goals and friendships. I’m someone who was focused on romantic relationships from a relatively young age, so in general, I wish I had spent less time on romantic relationships and more time on self-development throughout my young adult years. I have twin sisters who are 16 and they’re killing it in that department. One is writing a book and the other runs marathons. Hell yeah, right? I wish I’d focused on my relationship with myself like that. But the good news is that it’s never too late to invest in that relationship.” -Vanessa Labi, Blogger

6. Trust Your Intuition

“I feel like breakups are a long process. Usually that’s the painful part; that it’s a process. It takes a long time. But when it’s not working, you know. I would tell myself to trust my intuition with the next person. I have a really good sense of whether something will work or not. But sometimes we don’t follow that. I would say to trust my intuition and follow that with whoever I meet. Towards the end there was a gut feeling it wasn’t working but there was a part of me that wanted to make it work. I let myself go, which I don’t often do.” -Patricia Echeverria, Coach

7. Give Yourself Credit

“Things that have happened to you certainly inform the way you see and interact with the world, but they do not define who you are. Or, in the words of Aldous Huxley, ‘Experience is not what happens to you; it’s what you do with what happens to you.’ I did a lot of growing during and in the wake of that relationship, both creatively and personally. For a long time after we split up, I credited a lot of that growth to him rather than to myself. He, and the heartbreak itself, certainly provided a creative muse, and the relationship was, in many ways, a catalyst for a lot of subsequent change in my life. But it was me who did the growing and the changing…The life I’m living is mine. It has nothing to prove to him or to anybody. And it took me years– years! I hate admitting that– to see that clearly.” – Juliana Richer, Musician

8. Feel The Pain & Then Flush

“I’d say keep hurting. Stay in pain right now. Because it is in pain that you really grow the most. If you actually deal, it’s one of the best things ever. I wouldn’t say it’s going to be okay because you won’t believe it right now. But I do know that you need to feel your pain as long as it’s there. The second you feel it, you can deal with it. You’re at a point to say, I feel it enough and I’m ready to talk about it. And then, I’m ready to do the next thing. You can get angry. Anger is great too. I’ve done some of my best work in anger. So many people just try to repress it or seek this magical answer to get rid of the depression, hopelessness, and anger. But I say feel it. And get the right advice, advice that’s going to hold you accountable. What is it about you that’s still mourning the loss of trash? What is it about you that makes you sad because the shit in the toilet will inevitably need to be flushed? It’s not useful to you. Flush.” – Natasha Adamo, Writer

9. Love Yourself First

“I knew then that we weren’t meant to continue into the next stage of life together and that was okay – we could honor the time we did have together nonetheless. But I didn’t know then just how magical life could be alone. I’d always heard the advice to love yourself first – and duh- of course, love yourself first sounds so obvious. I thought I loved myself as much as the next girl. But I didn’t really know what that meant until this year – how to say nice things to yourself, ask yourself what you need, listen to your body, and do what you need to do for you first. Before I was always rushing myself, pushing myself, putting me last, and all under the guise that I thought I was invincible, so strong that I needed nothing. This self-bullying instead created the opposite effect – it made me easy to break. When I actively love myself, like do things for myself that I would do for someone I love, then I show up to the world needing nothing. I show up to dating needing nothing. And everything, therefore, is a gift.” – Leanne Mai-Ly, Entrepreneur and Activist

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