Why You Should Become Self-Involved after a Breakup


Chelsea Leigh Trescott

We spend our lives looking for answers, and at no time are we more desperate to discover these answers than in the wake of a breakup.

We expect the answers to relieve us, so we question everything that happened. Why would the person we loved ever let us go?  We study our past, the minutiae of our relationship, and we beg to know what went wrong and how we could have avoided it.

The thing is - relief doesn’t just depend upon our receiving answers, relief depends upon the quality of our questions. It depends upon focusing the questions inward. Knowing why X did Y to us will not give us the relief we so desperately expect it to. Because, you see, the questions surrounding our ex—their intentions, behavior, and thinking—aren’t actually the source of our pain.

Our pain is a pain we bring upon ourselves through our own misplaced questioning. The pain of our own wrong asking. It is the pain of avoidance. The pain of our own inflicting. This is what devastates us: our tendency to hunt down answers to the least empowering and pertinent questions.

In the wake of our breakup, the pain we are experiencing is created by the uncertainty surrounding our own whys and our prolonging that discovery. This is what is so exhausting: expecting relief to come to us “if-only” we could know the reason X did Y.

This is what pains us: having that answer, only to feel no substantial alleviation in return. So, what do we do? We begin hunting down big enough questions. We invest our energy and our understanding in what can actually make a difference in our own lives, motives, intentions, histories, needs, wants, and behaviors.

To lead ourselves into a different kind of future, into a greater one, we have to give-up resolving the questions surrounding the whys of an ex and begin taking up interest in our own whys alone.

How do we start  answering those questions that center within our own being ? We start by becoming more self-involved. You read me right. Consider this a hall pass. After a breakup, our recovery depends upon the extent of our own self-involvement.

I’m telling you, you’ve got to become the expert of your own heart.

In the wake of a breakup, the relationship you must take up next is a relationship with yourself: you’ve got to answer your own whys.

Like, why was this particular person in your life? Was there an initial void you imagined the relationship might fill up and replace? Where did that void come from? In the beginning, what were you hoping love would relieve you of?

Often times, we aren’t dating what compliments us but what is convenient for us. Knowing this, though, is not enough. We have to understand why we’ve been seeking convenience.

You have to ask questions directed inward, like what was your relationship giving you? What did it take away? Having had this relationship, what do you now know about life and people, about love and yourself and your capacity to give? These are important questions, and their answers will make a dramatic difference to your experience of pain and your purpose, in the future, when seeking out greater love.

Your breakup is calling you. Do not ignore it. Your own why is a requirement to moving on and, better yet, moving upward. It’s what a breakup is all about. It’s about giving yourself time to be self-interested. That’s why it happens: so you can become more deeply involved with your own heart.

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