How to Survive a Breakup: Guest Appearance on Velvet's Edge Podcast

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Just to quickly let you know that I was recently a guest on the Velvet’s Edge podcast. If you’ve seen the reality show Very Cavallari (and I highly recommend if you haven’t!), this is Kelly Henderson’s podcast.

I first heard about Kelly’s podcast and blog via the show and love the topics she covers - think style, health, beauty, music, wellness. So good!

I reached out to Kelly to see if she might like to do a podcast on breakups and within a week it was recorded! Kelly was so lovely to speak to and we covered many important elements of getting through a breakup in the episode….

We talk what to do in those very first stages of a breakup, how to handle social media, using a breakup as a catalyst for positive growth and self-discovery and why men often have a harder time than women getting over a breakup.

Hope you can take something from it and you can listen in here!

Laura x

Why Won’t They Fight For Me?

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This question comes up a lot in the messages I receive from people. They’ve come out of a breakup and typically, their ex was the one who maybe cheated or was engaging in behaviour that was disrespectful in some way. The person messaging me is the one who seemed to make all the compromises, sacrifices and bended their boundaries big time to try and make the relationship work.

The breakup happens and the person who acted in ways that hurt the other has now descended into victim mentality, wants to give up, even if the other person was willing to forgive and fight for the relationship.

 “What gives? Why won’t that person fight for me when I was willing to let go and forgive to save this relationship?!”

Although logically and intellectually we know that this kind of emotional dynamic isn’t one that will end well, on an emotional level it still hurts to know our ex doesn’t want to fight for us. It seems unfair and like we’ve completely lost control. We want to be the one who walks away with our crown in place and head held high but it feels like the only way we can feel valued is if our ex says ‘I want to fight for you, I’ll do anything it takes.’

When what they say is the opposite, or if they seem defeated, want to walk away and decline our offer of forgiveness, it hurts. 

What you always need to come back to is if the trust has gone on some level, no amount of ‘fighting’ will be able to erase that. Whilst relationships take work, communication and compromise, the need to ‘fight’ for a relationship is a huge red flag in itself. I think the idea of it has been glamorised in films, romantic novels and TV but in reality, there are too many people in the world out there who you can find a much more harmonious relationship with. It won’t be like a fight. It might not feel it now because you had so much pinned on that person and that relationship but that doesn’t mean you should need to fight to make it work, if it’s already broken. 

After a breakup, we also don’t have a clear perspective of the difference between what we want and what is good for us. They are two different things. When we’re so emotionally attached to someone, we think we might want to forgive and forget because we’re reacting from a place of heightened emotion. We’ll do anything to keep that person even if it means going way against our values and boundaries. The only way to see what is good for us on a soul level, is to create that emotional distance.

The remains of a relationship can’t be rebuilt on quicksand. If you’re not both in it with all your heart after both taking time to reflect and get perspective in a healthy way, your only choice is to walk. 

If the person who has cheated or done wrong in some way has lost the will to continue the relationship - whether they’re in denial or even if they do regret their behaviour, this is your green light to exit once and for all. That’s all you need to know.

Although it’s devastating when this happens and of course, our confidence can plummet because it feels so personal, you have to keep looking at the long-term, bigger picture.

Whilst you are in those raw times of hurt, sadness and feeling like you deserve more, have things like journaling, EFT (tapping), a support network and doing things that make you feel grounded and nurtured in place. But always be thinking of the future you who will be thriving when this period ends. Know that although it feels sh** now, you walked away from something with grace and dignity; knowing what is best for your highest self, even if you had to suffer the hurt in the short-term. 

Not fighting for someone or a relationship isn’t about fairness and it’s not about thinking we deserve it if we’ve put all the effort in. It’s awful when we’re cheated on and it’s natural to take it personally but when we look at it like a transaction e.g. I was the one cheated on, I’m willing to forgive so therefore I deserve to be fought for, it becomes more about our ego and needing that person to validate us rather than stepping out into the unknown and learning how to validate ourselves.

That is what you truly deserve - to set yourself free to live your life in alignment with your values and when you feel ready, find someone who you won’t have to fight for, who won’t engage in behaviour that compromises your boundaries. To be with someone that, you know, it feels a lot easier with and who you feel loved by and valued by 100% of the time! 

Walking away from something and someone that isn’t right will give you so much more self-worth than trying to be fought for by someone whose heart just isn’t in it. Or in a relationship dynamic that is broken and one-sided.

When your ex doesn’t give you what you feel you need, it’s the best lesson you can enrol in when it comes to confidence and self-love. Because you can learn how to give that to yourself. And that makes you truly unstoppable.  

Laura xx

 

Self-Care & Creating Healthy Habits with Jaime McLaughlin. New Bounce Back Podcast Episode

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I wanted to pop on the blog and let you know that I have a new Bounce Back podcast episode out with self-care strategist (and expert in all things hair and beauty!) Jaime McLaughlin.

Jaime is the founder of The Mac House and let me tell you - she's the queen of all things bounce back. She's had quite a journey going from a single mother of 2 in her early 20's who found herself in a cycle of destructive relationships, to happily married, owning a successful business as a mum of 4 kids and doing what she loves.

Jaime gives some incredible advice on how to build resilience and we also talk beauty and style on a budget, motherhood (and how to find time for yourself even as a busy mum), creating healthy habits that set you up for the day, what self-care means from both an internal and external perspective and working through relationship struggles. 

Jaime is hugely talented in all things hair, makeup and beauty so this was a fun way for me to get some tips too ;)  You can listen in here.

I hope you enjoy and I'd love to know what your key takeaway from this episode was? Let me know in the comments!

Love,
Laura xx

Is My Ex Happy With Their New Partner?

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Hello! It’s been a while since I’ve been here on the blog but I’m excited to be getting back into the swing of writing again!

I thought I would start with a topic that repeatedly arises with clients I work with and readers. One I often would ponder over myself of course too. 

The question of whether an ex is happy with their new partner.

It can feel so incredibly brutal when we find out our ex has met someone new. Especially when we feel we have invested so much time and emotion into the relationship and then they just suddenly…well….move on.

So many questions consume our thoughts - ‘Did they love us in the first place?’, ‘How can they be happy when we’re stuck in a cycle of misery?’ and the most potent of all the thoughts ‘Is this new person going to change them/get the best of them?’

This final question can feel like a living purgatory and can ignite so many emotions. Fear, anger, loss, shame, guilt. It’s like a never-ending, not fun rollercoaster and makes it so much harder to gain a sense of closure of the relationship. Let’s be real; a breakup can feel easier to deal with when we know our ex is suffering too. But when we find out they’ve met someone and splashing their happiness all over town, especially if it was their bad behaviour or some kind of wrong doing that triggered the breakup, and yet here we are still engulfed in a myriad of horrible emotions and pain, how can that be fair? 

And then we start thinking that maybe if we’d have hung in there that bit longer or compromised just a little more, they’d still be with us and not with this new person who is now going to get the best of them? Whilst we’re here alone and miserable!

Ugh, it’s truly exhausting isn’t it. 

Well, the purpose of this post is to try and shed some light on this tough to navigate situation. Let’s cut straight to it - and let’s shout this one louder for the people at the back!

Just because your ex is with someone new, this doesn’t mean that they will now gloriously transform into a new person or that it will eradicate their previous bad behaviour or habits that contributed to the breakup in some way. 

Even if they end up getting engaged to or marrying that person, this also doesn’t mean an automatic remedy for toxic behaviour and will only serve as an expensive, elaborate and drastic bandaid/plaster. That’s an important one to remember. 

I get it though - it still feels so tough but what you have to keep reminding yourself is that whilst your ex is probably in the honeymoon period now and putting their best foot forward, their same patterns will start to surface with this new person eventually. By then, you will feel so relieved that this isn’t you and understand that even if you got shot by the bullet whilst in the relationship, the next time round you most definitely dodged it. You will be grateful for that, I assure you.  

I just want to add here that this isn’t about taking glory in the fact that your ex and their partner might experience relationship turbulence and unhappiness later down the line. That’s not what I’m about and it’s not good for any of us to revel in that kind of thought or emotion. Your happiness should be the priority and focus. But what I do want to offer you is some perspective. The new relationship can trigger us into questioning our judgement. It can make us believe that we should have compromised our boundaries more and feel like now we’re going to have to pay the price for letting them go.   

The truth is, if your ex hasn’t resolved their issues, the happiness they’re showing now is temporary. If they need to change in some way in order to know what it means to be part of a healthy relationship, only they can do that. New partners or other people can certainly inspire us or be a positive influence on us and be part of the reason why we want to change if that’s needed, but ultimately, the desire and motivation to change has to come from within. That’s why you will see so many people - and maybe you’ve done this too (because hey, this isn’t about ex-bashing, we all have stuff we could do with working through!) repeating the same patterns in each relationship. Your ex isn’t going to be an anomaly. 

If it’s the type of situation where your ex didn’t really do anything wrong and you find yourself wondering if they’re happy with someone else, I think it’s key to find a way to make peace with the fact that yes, they might be. It doesn’t mean that they weren’t happy with you but as I always say, if a relationship isn’t right for one person then it isn’t right for the other either. What you need to do is find your own sense of happiness again as an individual and regain that sense of owning your life force. We can often look to a partner to fulfil this and breakups can be the perfect catalyst to really understand how to take ownership of ourselves once more. 

The answer to both scenarios is to try and shift your thoughts away from your ex and onto yourself. You have too much of a life to live and that must take priority over worrying about the happiness of your ex. Allow the thoughts to come if they do, but then stop, remember the perspective you now know, and choose a different thought. That’s how the rewiring of eradicating the ex-obsession will start to form. 

I hope this has helped anyone who needs to hear it.

Laura x 

Why we Need to be 'Selfish' in Relationships

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I wanted to share a new podcast I have out asap as it's a GOOD one! I have Dr. Laura Dabney with me on The Bounce Back podcast. Dr. Laura is Virginia’s Top Marriage Counselor & Psychologist and we delve deep into so many juicy topics when it comes to all things relationships.

Including -:

- Why we need to be selfish in relationships

- What it really means to be selfish in practice

- Setting ourselves up for the right relationship when we're single

- How to communicate effectively 

- Breaking the pattern of bad habits

- How to spot a red flag and what to do!

You can listen in here

This one is filled with actionable tips and advice so I know you're going to get so much from it! 

Love,
Laura xx

Coping with a Breakup When You Weren’t ‘Officially’ Dating

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Breakups are hard enough when you’re in a relationship but what about those breakups when you’re only ‘kind of’ or casually dating someone? Somehow, I think these breakups can actually be harder to transition through because it’s almost like we don’t feel like we should or deserve to grieve that relationship - whatever it was.

So I thought I would talk about this topic more. A follower sent me this on instagram this week -:


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Who can relate??! I think it’s a huge challenge of dating in today’s world!

In fact, I remember going through a very similar experience a few years ago. I really liked this guy - everything seemed to be going amazingly and very quickly (which in itself, when I reviewed the signs and circumstances was a red flag). In all honesty, the lifetime of the relationship was only about 6 weeks. We were never ‘official’ because he was admittedly emotionally unavailable but when things ended, it knocked me harder than a couple of my longer-term relationships.

The thing was, I didn’t quite know how to get over it or move through it because we were never in an actual relationship. I felt like the usual ‘steps’ didn’t really apply to me. I felt like I couldn’t get the closure I needed.

After speaking with so many people on this, coaching them through it and of course, having gone through it myself those years ago, I wanted to share how you can deal with it if you find yourself in this mindf**kery of a scenario too!

What You Are Feeling is Real and OK

Ok so first of all, the ‘terms’ of the relationship aren’t important. What is important are your feelings and what you are feeling is very real. You’re human. You had a connection with someone; whether that was physical, emotional, spiritual or an amalgamation of the three. That isn’t to be discounted just because there wasn’t a label or a time period that constituted it being a long-term relationship.

Some of the hardest romantic experiences to get over are the ones that lasted barely any time because they were so intense. So if you are feeling heartbroken, you’re completely entitled to feel that. Allow it.

Cry, journal it out, look after yourself physically, surround yourself with positive people, do things you enjoy - all the things you would do if you were going through an ‘actual’ breakup.

No Contact

Don’t contact the person you dated. Remember, you can create your own closure. You don’t need the other person to do this. You don’t need text conversations about why they didn’t or can’t commit. You don’t need answers because the fact that the dating experience between you is over is closure enough. They’ve shown you their intentions and perhaps they’re not a bad person, but just not ready. That’s nothing to do with you and everything to do with them. 

However, that still doesn’t mean you lower your standards to accommodate them. The guy I mentioned above, he wasn’t ready but he wasn’t a bad person. He just had so many things he needed to figure out for himself and I didn’t have the power to speed this up. No matter how understanding I was, how pretty I tried to look when I saw him, how intellectual, funny or empathetic I tried to be. No one had that power. It was heartbreaking walking away but it saved me so much potential heartache in the future. 

The danger with these very casual types of relationships is that they leave so much room to weave in and out of each other’s lives because there are no relationship parameters. Usually when there’s an unequal balance of commitment, the person who is hot/cold and more into the whole ‘casual’ thing, they can unfortunately see it (and us without our boundaries) as the low hanging fruit. It almost gives them a free pass to text when they’re bored or even maybe genuinely missing us. They can perhaps say the right things but if they still can’t commit there is nothing we can do to change that. Texts are easy. Words are words. Actions - and consistent actions, are very different. 

Know your Values

When you really like someone it’s very tempting to compromise your values and wants just to get to spend time with them. So know where the line is drawn. Don’t accept morsels of a ‘what-if’ relationship. The fact is, if the person isn’t willing to commit to a relationship (and I don’t mean for the sake of calling it a relationship, but more so, they give you all the things that a healthy relationship consists of), then you have to be really strong and put your feelings for them beneath your values, self-respect and needs.

You have to disregard ‘what if’ for ‘what is’.

Believe me, I know this one is hard but it’s the greatest gift you can give yourself to walk away from someone who isn’t prepared to offer you the commitment you deserve. Again, this isn’t about being the bigger person or doing it so they see what they’re missing. It’s about committing to yourself and walking away from people or situations that aren’t aligned to where you’re at. 

The New Person They’re Dating isn’t Getting the ‘Best’ of them

Also know that if this guy/girl quickly starts dating someone else, it’s ok to feel hurt. Again, you’re human and its unrealistic to feel nothing when you had a form of connection. But please know that if you were messed around or they were emotionally unavailable in some way, just because they’re with someone else, that someone else will soon experience all the things you did too. The hot/cold behaviour, the unknowing about where they stand, the same patterns. The new person doesn’t have a special power to change them just like you didn’t. Changing can only come from within them.

If this new person does end up being a long-term thing, the exit out of the ‘kind-of’ relationship was exactly what you needed. That person was not for you and now you’re free to find the right one. It can be so hard to accept but it is true.

Even though this knowledge might not take away the pain, it can help to soothe it. I really do want you to try and take comfort in this because I know it’s heart-wrenching to go through. 

What if you Have Mutual Friends?

One question I also received was how to navigate awkward conversations with the person you dated if you share a friendship group. This again can be really hard but if your feelings are that strong, creating distance with that group, especially if your ‘ex’ is always around too, can be a wise thing to do - even if it’s temporary. Put your feelings first because the more you see them, the more you’ll relive the pain over and over and it’s excruciating. It’s like rubbing salt into an emotional wound.

If you’re feeling somewhat neutral about the breakup, just make peace with the fact that the conversation will be awkward. There’s no getting away from that. I don’t think there’s any way to escape the awkwardness that comes with bumping into an ex (even the not ‘real’ exes!) for the first time?! So the best way to handle it if there is one, is with grace, ease, dignity and a degree of emotional distance. 

Are These Type of ‘Drive-by’ Relationships Healthy?

This person also asked if ‘drive by’ relationships are an unhealthy coping mechanism for bigger personal issues you have yet to face. She explained that both her and the guy she was dating had recently gotten out of long term relationships. The dating situation then ended and perhaps they were seeking fulfilment in each other to avoid looking within themselves?

With this one, I think we’ve all been there when we’ve dated quickly after a relationship. I don’t believe this is good, bad, right or wrong but if part of you is questioning your reasons or deep down, you know that it’s to mask something underlying that you’re struggling to face, then that suggests that some more time is needed to heal.

It doesn’t necessarily or always mean you have deep rooted issues to resolve, more so that you’re feeling a little vulnerable and looking for a new experience with someone else is a way to relieve that. But when this comes with an aftermath of pain or mini-heartbreak, then it’s likely a sign that you just need to give yourself more time to show yourself that you can find that fulfilment within yourself and other aspects of your life. So that is what you work on.

When you feel that your life is nicely full and that a partner would add to that rather than relying on them to make it full, that’s a great place to date.

Taking time out to be alone and address any issues if there are any can be scary but it can also be truly transformational. It’s like you almost have to walk into the unknown, face that fear and go through the discomfort to get the reward that 100% comes at the other side. And the fear does lesson but you just have to give yourself that time to allow it. 

Breakups and dating - of all types can be messy. It’s so important that we be kind to ourselves, take the time we need and know that not every relationship is going to work out perfectly. (Sometimes we can over-analyse things that just weren’t meant to be and drive ourselves crazy!) But also, that there is always some kind of lesson or opportunity for growth.

I really hope this helps anyone going through this right now - please let me know if you have anything to add or something you’d like me to speak more on in a follow up post!

Love,

Laura x

How to Find Love when You're Losing Hope

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If you constantly feel like your time has passed, that you’ll never find anyone ‘better’ than your ex or that every relationship potential seems to only serve to reconfirm your fears about love, then this one is for you.

I also want to add a full disclaimer to this post - I am not in a relationship myself right now. I really believe it’s important for me to be transparent about this because I can assure you, as I write this, I fully empathise, understand and appreciate all the fears that you might be experiencing too. I’d like to say that I’m not in a relationship because I love and choose to be single. Well, I do like being single ha but would I like a relationship? For sure!

My personal reason isn’t that I’ve gone through romantic heartbreak recently, that I’ve been on a string of dates that didn’t work out or just can’t seem to seek out that ‘spark’ (which I have my own unique views on anyhow but that’s for another post!).

I’m a big believer in not dwelling on things but again, for transparency, the past 2/3 years have been the most challenging times I’m sure I’ll ever go through when it comes to my health and it hasn’t made for a particularly vibrant or active dating life! With that, so many fears have arisen. I’ve been hell-bent on improving my health and luckily now, I’m almost fully healed. And I really am enjoying dating more but my god, it’s reminded me what these dating waters are made of!

This post isn’t about me, but I wanted to add this in to let you know that I’m right in this one with you my friends :)

(This also isn’t a ‘how to date after bad health’ type of post but just wanted to give you some context!)

So how do you begin to believe that love is out there for you?

You Believe in You

Regardless of your reason - heartbreak, dates not working out, never getting past the third date, feeling like you can’t seem to meet your soulmate no matter how many dates you go on, a health crisis or a personal challenge, the first thing I want you to know, is that before you even begin to believe in love, you have to believe in you.

When we’re in this timeline or lack-focused mindset, it exposes us to firstly over-analyse. Ourselves, our fears, other people, the idea of love, the correct route to finding ‘the one’. It can drive us crazy.

Secondly, it also makes us question our past in a negative way. I know when I was out of a rough breakup and feeling shaky or despondent about the prospect of love, I’d often think ‘maybe if I’d have been a little more open to compromise‘maybe the relationship was better than I thought - every relationship has ups and downs’, ‘maybe what he did/said wasn’t that bad after all….’

There’s a big difference between owning your mistakes and where you might have overreacted and then discounting the bad things to boost the good to an unrealistic level because you’re scared of being alone forever.

The truth is, love will be very hard to come by whilst you still don’t believe in yourself, your choices and your ability to know right from wrong. You can get out there dating buzzing with outer confidence but the minute something triggers your inner insecurities, the following things can happen -:

- You meet someone you like and ignore those small signs that this person isn’t right for you. They don’t match your values, show signs of emotional unavailability, might cross boundaries, play hot and cold but yet you like them and so you over compromise and overlook the things that ring inner alarm bells to you.

- You find it hard to distinguish the good person from the right person who aligns with your core values.

- You become timeline and outcome focused.

- You continue the pattern of falling for the wrong people. When this happens, it’s no coincidence.

You have to start believing in yourself. How to do this? You get comfortable with your fears and insecurities and you become friends with them. You practice choosing and engaging in healthy relationships in all areas of your life - not just romantic. You learn to become confident in your decisions, choices, your values and what’s important to you. You make all of this a part of your daily life.

As James Altucher, one of my favourite writers and speakers says, you ‘Choose Yourself’. 

Believing in yourself is more than affirmations in the mirror and vision boards. Sure, that can help but it’s the actions that create the self-belief and this starts long before pasting pictures on a corkboard or signing up to another dating app. It’s not always easy and it might mean being single for longer, but I assure you, it’s worth it.

For me, although my health put me at a disadvantage when it came to being able to meet someone, I can’t just be a victim and put the entire blame on that and not take responsibility. I haven’t ever really put my health as a proper priority in the past (despite always claiming I was into ‘wellness’) and so, I’ve had to pay the price and learn how to. I’ve had to see and focus on my qualities that I could bring to a relationship outside of the external things we typically use to validate ourselves. All of those external validations I couldn’t really rely on so much, so I had to dig deeper.

I’ve also had to learn how to be way more compassionate, kind and understanding of others and not get too self-consumed. I now place so much more emphasis and attention on a person’s qualities and emotional awareness/intelligence as opposed to their job, looks, level of success etc.

It’s certainly not been a linear thing and it’s been hard. But what I’ve gained will serve me so well in my next relationship and I feel very grounded in my worth (and others’) as a result.

Become the Person you Want and Deserve to be in a Relationship with

It’s very easy to take a shopping list approach to meeting someone. I’m big on being clear on your core values when it comes to a partner and not settling, but we often forget that until we become that person, act like that person and live up to those values we seek out, we’re usually looking for something in someone to provide a practical or emotional security blanket.

So before you start writing off people because they’re not this or that (hey, we’ve all been guilty of it!), start to become that person for yourself. The more you do, the more you’ll start to gravitate towards and attract the same kind of people. Like attracts like. You’ll also be more confident in walking away if something isn’t right - yes, even if you’re crazy attracted to that person!

Don’t Focus too much on it! (Then you’ll see there’s no such thing as a Lack of Love.)

We all feel the pressure - especially as we get into our 30’s and beyond. It’s easy to say to not worry about it but I know that’s tough. Honestly though, the longer you spend fretting, the less you’re living your life, which will be what actually gets you meeting people and feeling happier and fulfilled.

Help others, find a passion, nurture your existing relationships, be healthy, have fun and work through those insecurities to get more comfortable with yourself. The more you do this, the less pressure you’ll start to feel and that is when love will begin to look much more abundant.

I hope this helps anyone who needs it. Remember, you’re not alone in the way you feel. We’re all in this together and I strongly believe it can be so reassuring to know that :)

Laura xx

 

 

 

The Bounce Back Podcast: Overcoming Adversity & the Art of the Bounce Back with Lauryn Evarts Bosstick

On this week’s episode of the Bounce Back Podcast, my guest is Lauryn Evarts Bosstick, the founder of The Skinny Confidential and co-host of the Skinny Confidential Him & Her Podcast.

I’m proud to be an OG follower of Lauryn’s so you can imagine my excitement when she said she’d love to come on the show!

Lauryn and I have such a fantastic conversation about the true art of a bounce back. What I particularly love about this episode, is that it’s packed full of Lauryn’s practical advice and tips.

We talk about what it really means to bounce back in love, life and business and how to take those steps to do so. We chat self-love, stoicism, business, relationships, how to go after the relationship you want and deserve, self-improvement, comparison and Lauryn gives us the lowdown on how to rejuvinate your skin, body and mind whilst going through heartbreak! (Well, I couldn’t let her get away without sharing some of her skincare and beauty advice!)

This episode was such a joy to record and there are countless takeaways for you to utilise to take control of your own bounce back right now.

LISTEN IN HERE

The resources Lauryn recommends -:

@dailystoic

The Daily Stoic - Ryan Holiday

Awaken The Giant Within - Tony Robbins

The 48 Laws of Power - Robert Greene

Find Lauryn at The Skinny Confidential 

Lauryn's IG: @theskinnyconfidential

TSC Him And Her Podcast

Hope you enjoy! Here is the link again on itunes to listen in.

Laura x

Relationship Advice, Based On the Characters of Sex and the City

Image courtesy of    The Newsette

Image courtesy of The Newsette

Call me a cliché but I absolutely LOVE Sex and the City!

In fact, I remember going through a breakup about 7 years ago and it was my beloved SATC boxsets that really helped get me through.

So I just wanted to share a fun post I wrote for the Newsette, which looks at relationship advice based on the SATC girls. So whether you see yourself as a Carrie, Samantha, Miranda or Charlotte, there’s some tips in here that will help you navigate your relationships more smoothly.

I hope you enjoy!

You can read the post here.

x

How to Stop Self-Sabotage in its Tracks

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This is one that comes up over and over again with people I work with and I know that all of my own personal downfalls have been rooted in self-sabotage. It’s something I have to work on daily - multiple times!

The reason why self-sabotage is so difficult to break out of, is because it’s habit. It’s our default go-to and most of all, it feels safe. Doing the opposite action (which is usually what’s needed) or just something different is scary and takes us into unknown territory. So we resort back to those old behaviours that eventually lead to the same outcome.

These are the kind of things we say to ourselves and others when it comes to these habits and behaviours -:

- “It’s just the way I am”

- “I know it’s the wrong thing but it’s just so difficult to change”

- “It’s just part of my personality and I can’t help that”

Self-sabotage can hinder us in health, relationships, finances, career, self-esteem and basically everything that involves us being a human on this earth. Usually it tends to happen in one prominent area but can filter into other parts of our life too.

As the quote goes “How you do anything is how you do everything

So how do you stop self-sabotage in its tracks to kick-start your bounce back? Here are a few ideas that I regularly use to pull myself out of it when it creeps in.

#1 Identify the behaviour or habit

It’s very easy to just say ‘well, this is the way I am’ but honestly, that’s not true. Our brains can be re-wired to change and whilst we have personality traits, our way of thinking, our behaviours and our habits can all be re-wired to change in a way that serves us better.

To do this though, you have to be willing to name what it is that’s self-sabotaging you. To call it out. For example, if you find yourself always getting hurt in relationships, what are you doing to create that? Are you gravitating towards the people that just aren’t good for you and ignoring the red flags in favour of excitement, ‘living life’ or giving someone a chance? Are you a constant people pleaser and ignoring the times you want to just say no? When it comes to your health, do you have good intentions but then ‘fall off the wagon?’ None of these things mean you are a weak or bad person - definitely not! But being willing to name them is a huge, brave and very necessary step.

#2 Imagine the habit/behaviour is a separate ‘thing’ in-front of you

It can feel like self-sabotage is innately within us or part of our DNA. It can also feel like it creeps in from behind us when we’re unaware. A little trick I learnt, which was immensely helpful, is to imagine it sitting right in-front of you; smaller than yourself and like an annoying little creature or ‘thing’. All of a sudden, it doesn’t have as much power, it can’t hurt you and you are in a much more empowering position to make a different choice.

So if you know your go-to is to think negative of yourself (e.g. I suck at relationships anyway, I always get hurt, I’m not attractive enough, it’s no wonder I can’t meet anyone, everyone is doing better/more sorted than me etc) and sends you on a downward spiral, imagine that thought or action is right in-front of you instead of part of you. All of a sudden, it can no longer hurt you. You can consciously choose a different thought and even if you still don’t feel great, you’re priming yourself to be less reactive and in a place to make a different choice.

#3 Do the different thing

This one sounds easy and really, it is. We tend to hugely over complicate things but when it comes to taking an action that feels so alien to us, even with the best intentions, our default is to go back to self-sabotage. To create a new habit or way of thinking and therefore way of being, you need to start doing the different thing.

Instead of being tempted by the charming, charismatic guy or your ex who you know deep down is emotionally unavailable, choose to dodge that one in favour of doing something for yourself instead or going for the guy who seems less exciting but is showing you has the makings of a good person who represents all the things you really want and need in a relationship.

When you know not fuelling your body properly makes you feel like crap because of how you’ve felt before doing that, but your low mood seems to make you do it anyway, stop and think what would better fuel you? This doesn’t necessarily mean not having the glass of wine/pizza/whatever food you’ve deemed ‘bad’ by the way! It might actually mean allowing yourself to have it, enjoying it and moving on with your life instead of beating yourself up afterwards. Or it might mean getting better sleep or seeking support from someone who can help you get your physical health on track.

It might mean doing something that you know is going to make you feel better and healthier.

I’ve been on a...hmmm.....'interesting' journey with my health the past 2 years. After being totally entrenched in and obsessed with healing diets and protocols, I’m now having to take complete opposite actions to restore my health. I’m having to do different things and choose different thoughts every day and it’s tough! But I know it’s the only way.

Ultimately, you know what to do. You know what will best serve you so you need to do exactly that even if it feels like you’re in a different body. Doing the thing that creates a different and better result over and over will mean the rewiring will start to take place. And then slowly, THAT becomes the new habit.

I wish I had a magic cure for stopping self-sabotage forever in one hit. (Well, if I did, I’d be living the high life in my Beverly Hills mansion sipping champs with Lisa Vanderpump dahling ;) ) Unfortunately there isn’t an ultimate quick fix. But these steps have helped me and the people I work with one-to-one hugely. (There are many more of course, but I thought these would be a good starter.)

The thing is though, change can be created quickly if you want it enough and are ready to say goodbye to your old thoughts and behaviours - or at least turn the volume of them down. It’s the self-awareness of them and repetitiveness actions to change them that you have to commit to.

So just to repeat, self-sabotage isn’t part of your personality, it’s just a way of thinking that has become so engrained in you. Name it, see it as separate to you and start doing and thinking the different thing.

The way out, is always through :)

Laura x

 

Latest Podcast with Gala Darling

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I'm writing this from sunny LA and enjoying some much needed relaxation time!

But I just wanted to let you know that I have a new podcast episode out with radical self-love QUEEN Gala Darling!

In the episode we talk about bouncing back from breakups (and Gala offers an entirely new perspective on how long it takes to get over a breakup), manifesting, self-love, Emotional Freedom Technique as a tool for healing and so much more. I know you're going to get an abundance of wisdom from this one! 

You can listen in here.

Enjoy!

Laura xx

PS I will be back with more posts very soon! 

Approaching Mental Health and Dating

Pic by  Hey Saturday

Hi guys and gals! Hope you're all doing really well. 

Today I wanted to share a post I wrote for Eharmony on mental health and dating. This one is so important and definitely on my heart due to what I've experienced in the past couple of years with my health bounce back and learning to overcome the fear of dating and getting into a relationship. 

During this time, I've been incredibly consumed with thoughts of being inadequate, a 'burden' or like I don't have as much to offer as a partner. It goes without saying that it's taken it's toll mentally. I will be going into this much more in depth on my podcast next week. 

Mental health is something that so many of us are challenged with and we often suffer in silence. It doesn't and shouldn't have to be that way - particularly when it comes to dating and our relationships. So I really hope this helps and offers some comforting yet practical advice. 

You can read it here

Laura xx

How to Keep Going when you Feel Like Giving up

Pic snapped by Saskia Nelson of  Hey Saturday

Pic snapped by Saskia Nelson of Hey Saturday

I didn’t actually plan to write this post but it’s something that’s been on my mind lately. If you’ve been through the trenches of a breakup, heartbreak, health struggle, career breakdown situation or just feeling like life is throwing you one sh** brick after another, you’ll know how hard it is to get back on the horse of positivity and keep going.

(Don’t worry, this isn’t going to be a post just about ‘staying positive’ ;) )

The reason why I wanted to write this, is because I totally get it. I was there throughout a previous breakup and it’s something I’ve experienced in my life recently, in a different way. Most people find me through my work in heartbreak; mainly breakups, but heartbreak can come in so many forms. It can also manifest physically in a multitude of ways. 

You may have read a few of my older posts around my health challenges. As this blog is for the purpose of helping you, I won’t go into the nitty gritty of all the details but to keep it brief and offer some context, the ‘health heartbreak’ as I’ll call it, went on for some time and keeping on going, remaining ‘positive’ and finding a way up was a challenge to say the least!

As mentioned, I don’t want this post to be all about me but I just want you to know that I’m coming at this from the ‘I get it, I’m with you’ perspective. 

So whether you’re going through a breakup, a health struggle or any kind of heartbreak that's completely unique to you, I wanted to share some coping techniques that I implemented and still continue to, that might be of use to you too.

1) Be grateful

I know, you’ll have probably heard this one a zillion times over but there’s a reason why you hear gratitude being spoken about so much. It’s POWERFUL. If there’s an instant way to defuse those feel bad vibes, it’s gratitude, and even if it doesn’t directly change your situation, it changes your perspective. 

I love this quote by Roy. T Bennett -:

Great things happen to those who don't stop believing, trying, learning, and being grateful.” 

Being grateful shifts you from a dwelling, passive and stagnant mode into a receptive one. Being in the here and now and catching that glimmer of light through the darkness. From there you're open to new ideas, hope and inspiration. Whatever you’re going through, it’s not about discrediting it or trivialising it. Breakups are rough. Heartbreak can be agony; physically and emotionally. But you will ALWAYS have something to be grateful for. It could be something tiny such as a beautiful colour you spot in your home, a song on the radio, a call you had with a friend yesterday. The more things you list, the more you will find. 

 2) Look to others as examples

This is all about finding evidence that ‘if they can do it, I can too!’ Whenever I feel like giving up or resigning myself to always feeling this way, I find examples of other people who have come from a similar place as I have and are thriving. I’ve done this with my health and I did it when I was going through my last breakup. 

You’ll often learn that for those people, it was also a process, but seeing them a few steps ahead of you or even miles ahead, can give you the fuel you need to know it’s possible for you too. As humans, we’re all really made of the same stuff. Yes, our genetics are different, our DNA is different, our backgrounds and social conditioning are different. But ultimately, we all have the same potential regardless of academic intelligence, appearance, wealth or background. When it comes down to it, heartbreak is the ultimate equaliser, shakes us all to our core and mindset trumps everything. So look to others as a way to remind yourself that if they can, you can!

3) Rewire and reprogram your brain

Something that I’ve been studying intensely over the past 6 months is how (and why) to rewire your brain. Honestly, it’s mind blowing!

What this means is learning how to identify and change your internal and subconscious beliefs to heal. Say you just can’t seem to get over your ex despite doing everything in your power. Yup, you’ve read all the books and all the articles and nothing seems to help.

Even though on a conscious level you want for the pain to be over more than anything, deep down, some of the beliefs you could be experiencing might include not feeling good enough to be alone or in new relationship, being scared of your identity without your ex, not wanting to let go of your ex or being afraid of change. 

With health, it could be not believing you’re worthy of having perfect health, being scared of what would happen if you were healthy, feeling unsafe in the world, being afraid to speak your truth, not believing that you’re capable of taking care of yourself…..

Ultimately the process of rewiring is individual and allows you to tap into those deep rooted and often insidious reasons that are keeping you stuck - usually they’re a little ‘WTF?!’ and enlightening to discover! It’s then about calming down your limbic system to get into a parasympathetic state as opposed to a fight or flight one to then begin to rewire those old patterns and turn them into new ones that will support getting over your ex, getting back to perfect health or whatever situation you’re looking to bounce back from. 

This process includes a highly repetitive blend of elements such as affirmation, visualisation and action. I’m going to do a separate post on this though - let me know any specifics you’d like me to cover. Honestly, this one is a game changer!

4) Just DO something

Feelings of depression tend to go hand in hand with heartbreak. Of course, there are different degrees of depression and if you do feel concerned about how you’re feeling or struggling, I really encourage you to seek support from a licensed and fully qualified therapist/expert or doctor who can offer the right tools to help you. Having that kind of support can be incredibly powerful. But right now, let’s talk about feelings of depression.

I’m not going to lie, over the past year when I was really going through it, I sometimes spent days in bed feeling emotionally numb. I isolated myself and felt like the days were on Groundhog Day repeat. It sucks. Depression is the worst kind of emotion because it’s passive. There’s no energy behind it. 

Nothing is impossible but it can be very tricky to go from feeling depressed to absolutely elated in a short space of time. No amount of affirmations can make your subconscious believe it! But aiming just a few rungs up the emotional ladder is more do-able. Even moving from depression to frustration or anger is an amazing step, because those emotions have energy behind them. You can DO something with them. 

To ignite that emotion climb it requires you to create energy within your body. Do jumping jacks, go for a walk, cook, clean, call a friend, do something which makes you feel like you’re ‘doing’ something. Movement is a great one. A brilliant definition of emotion is ‘energy in motion’. My personal new favourite is to put on a great tune and dance like a lunatic and let everything I’m feeling move through my body. I listened to a Tim Ferris podcast with Aubrey Marcus recently and Aubrey was talking about his ecstatic dance ritual to extract lower emotional feelings out of the body. 

It’s amazing how when we resign ourselves to staying stagnant, we embody that physically and emotionally. We feel tired. We feel worse inside. But just a little movement or environment change can be all we need in that moment to shift and get an extra rung up the emotion ladder. 

 5) Be the inspirer you need

Imagine that your younger, childlike self is feeling how you’re feeling. Going through this experience. What would you do or say to them to help them through? To keep them feeling inspired, safe and nurtured? When I thought of the younger me going through what I was dealing with, it immediately shifted me from victim mode to ‘right, let’s do this!’ because I want to take care of her. I’d hate to think of my 7-year-old vulnerable self feeling unsafe in the world and in her body. So by giving her that reassurance that everything is ok, it gives me that too. By taking care of her, I take care of me. It helps me access an innate kind of wisdom where nothing can stand in the way of my healing - for my 35-year-old self right now and for my 7-year-old self. 

Just know that whatever heartbreak you’re going through, it will pass. Feel it, be ok with it, know that it’s a human experience, know that like a captain steering a ship sometimes you have to adapt and go left, sometimes you have to go right; it isn’t a linear path. Do what you can to keep yourself moving forward a tiny step every single day. That’s all it takes.

Plus, you have your bounce back celebration to keep you going and look forward to! I'm a huge believer in celebrating all the wins and getting through heartbreak is one to be celebrated big time! To help you do that, I’ve just added a really exciting new service to my offerings! I’ll be doing a separate post on that next week but you can read all about it here - events are something I LOVE to plan and it brings me no greater joy than to help clients and friends plan their own bounce back celebrations!

I hope you enjoyed this post and would love to hear your thoughts on your bounce back methods!

Laura x

 

 

Making your Space your Own after a Breakup

Image from  Design Home

Image from Design Home

Breaking up with someone is tough enough, but when your space only serves to be a constant reminder of your relationship, it can be even harder to get some form of escape. It can also be a real challenge transitioning to living alone.

However, like all rough things that happen, I strongly believe there is opportunity in this! In this case, it’s a chance to explore your individuality through your space rather than worry about what (and who!) is missing.

This past year I’ve really got into home décor and have become totally obsessed with how people arrange and furnish their spaces! Your environment can be such a great reflection of your personality, creativity and mindset and it’s also a fun and nurturing way to explore your independence.

So, I've put together a few ideas on ways that you can make your space or home feel distinctly yours.

1) Explore different colours that energise you

Updating the colour of your space is a great way to invite in renewed feelings and energy. Hated that boring white wall your ex insisted on? Well now is the time to experiment with a colour that really lights you up!

2) Experiment with new art or accent decor

When you live with another person, there can be disagreements on taste in wall art, furniture décor and even the simple touches like throw pillows. Adding in some unique accent pieces such as a signature hanging light like the ones here or a unique piece of framed art from Etsy can transform your space without buying new furniture. Accent pieces are also a great way to be creative and let your personality shine through!

Another of my personal favourite places to buy good value and super cool wall art is Desenio.

3) Incorporate a bar-cart or tea/coffee corner

I love this one! Now that you’re single, you have even more time to entertain and spend time with friends. A chic bar-cart or space devoted to chatting with friends over tea can be a perfect way to inspire yourself to invite people over and rev up your social life. Here are some nice ideas to get you started.

4) Designate a space in your home for new hobbies

It’s all about creating new memories and undergoing personal expansion! One of the best cures for a breakup is finding something new to explore on your own. If it’s a hobby you want to immerse yourself in, designate a space in your home that's devoted to it.

It could be art, DIY, cooking, learning a new language or creative writing. For me, working out was my saviour so you could create a specific space for some yoga practice, dance or a general workout. Whatever your new hobby is, don’t be afraid to incorporate it into your environment, as it’s a reflection of you, your personality and your new-found independence!

Ultimately it’s about finding touches to add to your home that make you happy and represent a fresh chapter in your life. Plus it makes for a healthier distraction than stalking your ex’s Instagram ;)

I hope you enjoyed this slightly more practical post! As always if you’d like to look into working with me on a bespoke level, reach out on laurayatescoaching@gmail.com and let’s make it happen.

Love,

Laura

How to move on: a guide for anyone struggling to let go of an ex. (Guest Post for Eharmony)

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Hi everyone! I just wanted to share a new Eharmony piece with you where I talk about my top tips for moving on compassionately when it comes to letting go of your ex. I hope you enjoy and find it helpful!

You can read it here: How to move on: a guide for anyone struggling to let go of an ex

Love,

Laura xx

Sick of being Single on Valentine’s Day?  Don’t be Afraid to Face your Fears!

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Today for Valentine's Day I have a guest post for you! Christopher Jones is a renowned Breakthrough Expert and has some fantastic advice for anyone who is fed up of being single this Valentine's Day.

Go for it Chris!.........

By Christopher Paul Jones, The Breakthrough Expert

So Valentine’s Day has rolled around again and you are single… again.

While the shops fill up with, and then get emptied of, roses and chocolates and hearts and cards, you find yourself wondering why you are on your own again this year.

Of course, for some people, it is just a case of bad timing.  For others, however, there can actually be something going on subconsciously that almost forces us to destroy a relationship, so that we find ourselves perpetually single.

Maybe now is the time to ask yourself whether fear is the reason that you are single.

After all, fear can play a BIG part in a relationship – think about it… Fear of commitment, fear of your partner cheating, fear of losing someone that you care about... And we usually learn to fear something because of how it felt when we first went through it.

And now, let’s take this one important step further. I know this might sound silly at first. But, from a psychological perspective, I see many clients, who are actually being kept single because of their reaction to fear. Yes, it’s their reaction to fear, rather than the fear itself that destroys their relationships.

A reaction to fear? Keeping you single?

In general, when faced with something that we fear in our relationship, we, as humans, will turn to one of three reactions.  I’m talking about fight, flight or freeze mode. Or, in psychological terms, it is what we refer to as the reptilian mindset. In other words, it is a primeval reaction that happens because of our subconscious.

Usually, when we are little, something happens to us, something not pleasant, and our brain reacts by going into fight, flight or freeze mode. Now, the first time that this happens, we aren’t even aware of it. But our subconscious mind decides to repeat this, every time that we are presented with what it sees as danger.

So, for some of us, when presented with something that our mind perceives as negative, our subconscious then provokes this reaction - and it is this reaction that could be the culprit for keeping us single.

To make this clearer, let’s talk about Michael (we’ll call him Michael). Michael is 30, and lives in the city. Michael is looking for love, but keeps ending up single. What happens is that every time Michael is faced with a woman’s emotions, he reacts to his fear, and starts to become kind of angry… Michael automatically goes into fight mode, and as much as he thinks that this is being passionate… for his partners, they often see him as aggressive.

Michael, doesn’t fully understand why he becomes so angry. He looks to blame his partner. But what’s really going on is that Michael actually fears something… and his mind simply reacts to it. And he keeps on repeating this pattern, over and over and over.

Imagine just how much easier life could be for Michael if he could understand this mindset. Not only would he be able to change and control his reaction, but he would also be able to understand his fear. This would mean better communication with his partner... And possibly a long term relationship!

And it’s not just one party's lack of understanding of this pattern that can cause confusion in a relationship. Maybe you have found yourself being on the receiving end with someone when they go into fight, flight or freeze mode?

Perhaps you know all too well what it feels like to be with someone who reacts through fleeing (flight mode). This is the person who leaves after an argument, and never picks up their phone again.

Or maybe you have dated the freeze kinda guy or girl, who just clams up when under pressure, and seems to just sit there... And stay there. This can come across as uncaring. Yet what is going on on the inside, can be a totally different story.

By working out your own reaction, when faced with fear in a relationship, whether it be fear of commitment, or fear of losing someone, you put yourself back in the driver’s seat. You are able to a) dig deep and face yourself, and b) communicate with your partner.

Sometimes, all it takes is working on your fear with a therapist, coach or maybe, and a conversation with your partner, and once you understand what’s been going wrong here, you are able to see things a lot clearer.

One thing’s for sure - fight, flight or freeze - whichever reaction suits you best, in some ways, it’s actually natural. So, figure out where you fit, and then look at evolving past that. You owe it to yourself, and your future partner, to stop letting fear get the better of you.

Christopher Paul Jones, the Breakthrough Expert, as featured on the BBC, can be found at christopherpauljones.net and is available for one-to-one consultations on Harley Street, London. 

5 things to Help with Heartbreak (that you might not have thought of before!)

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Pic by Saskia of Hey Saturday

I remember when I was going through heartbreak and spending hours on google and delving into self-help books searching for answers, tips and advice. I’m sure you know what I’m talking about! Of course, some of it was incredibly useful and served me well to put into practice, but there are a few other things that I’ve explored and which have really done wonders in cultivating more confidence, self-worth, skills, friendships and purpose.

So, I thought it would be fun to put together a post on some of the more unique things that really helped see me through, and then out of heartbreak in the best way possible.

1) Start a blog

When I went through my last major breakup, I found comfort in writing. Writing is always something I’ve loved and turned to whether that be creative writing, composing articles and blogs or song writing. So it seemed like the most natural thing in the world to start writing about my own experience of heartbreak via a blog - the early days of this blog in fact! Not only did I find it a cathartic and therapeutic experience writing out what I was feeling and learning, it also enabled me to connect with so many people around the world who were going through the same thing. The fact that others found my words meaningful and of value - something they could also use for themselves, it gave me a new purpose during a time when I felt depleted and somewhat useless on every level.

I’m not saying that you have to air the gory details of your heartbreak or breakup for everyone to read - starting a blog or just putting pen to paper doesn’t have to be related to your heartbreak at all! When I read other people’s blogs, I’m always so curious as to what it was that propelled the person into starting it. 9 times out of 10, it’s usually to fulfil a void of unhappiness or emptiness or to mark a turning point in their life.

The whole creative process of blogging is something that can cultivate joy, release and purpose from the get-go.

2) Start a business

My blog eventually turned into my business of helping people through heartbreak on a more personal level. Again, this isn’t specifically what I am suggesting you do (unless you want to, in which case, go at it!) but out of so many of the people I work with, an interesting realisation that often comes to light, is an inner desire to start a business, side business or project. Heartbreak tends to make you reassess everything in your life and that often includes looking at where you’re the most unfulfilled and with many people - their career unhappiness or dissatisfaction is the thing they’ve avoided confronting. So why not actually go for it? Use your heartbreak as fuel to start that business or side project (that might eventually turn into a business) that you’re deeply passionate about!

There are countless examples of people who have started successful companies, small businesses or undergone radical career changes rooted in their passion after the ordeal of heartbreak. Use it as a catalyst to go after what you want! The fact that so many other people have (including me!), just goes to prove that it’s totally possible for you too!

3) Take a solo trip

Venturing out alone can feel like the most daunting thing in the world. Especially when you’ve been used to having someone there by your side most of the time. I took a solo trip to the US back in 2016 and it was the best thing I could have ever done at that time. Yes, I was nervous but the thrill and exhilaration of traveling alone, not knowing what to expect, being open to all kinds of new experiences and meeting new people did wonders for my confidence and zest for life. I had no specific plans or agenda and I went with the total goal of going with the flow whilst seeing as much as possible. I came back into Heathrow feeling like a new woman armed with new ideas, aspirations, friends, experiences and an LA glow that granted, was out of a booth and yes, wildly overpriced but hey, it’s swings and roundabouts ;)

I really encourage anyone to travel alone however near or far that might be. It cultivates reassurance that you can take care of yourself and is the ultimate way to create new memories. Plus with sites like Air BnB, it’s really easy to do things on a budget. I usually get a room in someone’s place when I travel for more than a week as it’s cheaper but it’s also a good way to meet new people who can help you out with the local area.

If high end is more your thing though, I’ve recently discovered a new app called Hotel Tonight where you can book luxury hotels last minute for a substantial discount! Ultimate luxe travel hack right there!

4) Reach out to 5 people and ask them to go for coffee

This one might sound a bit weird but hear me out ;) Something that has helped me immensely recently after going through 2 tough years in 2016/17 health-wise (which kind of felt like a heartbreak, albeit not a romantic one) has been getting out and meeting new people. Not necessarily just in a dating capacity, but in general.

Heartbreak in all forms can feel like such a stifling, isolating experience but with the likes of social media, it’s easier than ever to form new connections that can then turn into IRL friendships. I’ve used Facebook groups, Twitter, Instagram and meet-up.com to make amazing new friends who do all kinds of interesting, unique and inspiring things whether that’s in their careers, ventures, hobbies or just in their character. Nearly every friend I made in my visits to LA over the past 3 years originally came via social media!

Whenever I meet someone new or form a friendship this way, I always leave feeling uplifted and almost like some colour has been splashed back into my life. Interacting with people totally creates new and refreshed perspectives.

It’s probably the inner entrepreneur in me that is drawn to meeting people this way but it could also be just reaching out to people you haven’t seen in a while - old friends or ex colleagues you miss. It’s not about trying to accumulate as many friends as possible. I’m a firm believer in the idea that true friendships are about quality not quantity. This is more about just finding ways to broaden your social circles and the type of people you spend time around.

And if there’s someone you’d just really like to get coffee with because you love what they do or really think you’d get on - what’s the harm in reaching out?!

5) Write thank you letters

I can’t take credit for this one as it was inspired by an amazing lady who I worked with in the past. One thing she did after going through her breakup, was to write letters to all her friends and family who supported her through the experience. It enabled her to immerse herself in gratitude as opposed to dwelling on the heartbreak, and of course, it made everyone she sent one too feel loved and appreciated too.

How often do we receive thought out hand-written letters or cards that genuinely express our thanks and appreciation these days? Erm, not very often! I think it’s a fab thing to do (and plus, it gets you off your phone wondering if you should text your ex, right?! ;) )

I really hope these ideas have given you some food for thought or inspiration! The most effective way that I’ve found to alleviate heartbreak stress and counteract the feeling of loss, is to not try and find someone else to cure that, but to immerse yourself in something else. Start pursuing your passion in whatever form that is - a blog, business, fashion, writing a book, volunteering, music, writing, art - anything! I assure you, it will give you so much fulfilment, joy and hope for the future and could easily turn into something better than you ever imagined.

I’d love to hear any other unique coping tools that you’ve turned to following heartbreak?

Laura xx

 

How to Use Heartbreak as Fuel for Reinvention

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Illustration for the Newsette by Ellie Benuska

This week I had the pleasure of writing a guest post for The Newsette. If you haven't signed up for it, make sure you do - I'm such a fan! It basically curates the best inspiring, motivating and informative career-focused content from around the web for busy women that you can read before your first morning cuppa!

I wrote a post for them sharing advice on how to use heartbreak as fuel for reinvention. You can read it here and hope you enjoy!

Love,

Laura x

How to Manage Life when going through Heartbreak

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Getting over a breakup is tough enough in itself, but managing other responsibilities and obligations such as work, college, school and socialising can make it seem all the more overwhelming.

I’ve received quite a few emails around this so thought it might be useful to address it in a post in the hope that it will help anyone who is struggling with managing their healing whilst navigating everything else going on in their life. I know how overwhelming it can feel!

I remember when I was going through this and what really helped me, was to avoid compartmentalising. I tried not to see my work and other responsibilities as separate 'tasks' to my healing and instead, found new ways to use them to fuel and compliment it. 

It can actually be really useful to have these other things going on in your life as a way to focus your mind and attention. Although all we might want to do when going through heartbreak is to hole up under the duvet for days (or weeks) on end, that usually ends up perpetuating what we’re feeling even more because our minds get saturated with thoughts of the breakup. It’s all consuming.

Whilst something like work and actually being productive once there can seem like an almighty uphill struggle, it can lend itself to be a positive distraction and a way for you to channel your brain in a different way. 

Whether its work, college, your business, school, friends, family, your social life in general, you can still work on your healing at the same time. Although, I really do believe that it’s crucial to only take on what you can during these more vulnerable times. Don’t try and overload yourself and stick to what you have to do, and what you want to do!

When it comes to school/college/uni and earning a living, these can’t really be avoided so see them as an opportunity to get yourself into a different environment from one of the heartbreak you’re feeling. Plus, actually getting up out of your heartbreak pit, getting dressed and out the house to get there is a huge in itself! You’re showing up and that’s an achievement! 

It’s not about trying to forget what you’re dealing with once your there (as this might seem impossible!) but more about committing to focusing your attention on the task in hand in small chunks. Just take it in the smallest sections of time possible if you have to. Class by class, meeting by meeting, project by project and so on. 

Time and attention blocking this way will remind you that you can still accomplish and keep control of your life. It can also offer you some new found fuel and inspiration to work harder at your goals and objectives. But you can also factor in some of the more calming healing techniques throughout your day too. Even something as simple as getting out for a walk at lunch can make such impact on how you feel. Or 20 minutes of reading, journaling and some deep breathing in those oh-my-god-I’m-gonna-burst-into-tears moments can really help too!

Try and get in some exercise throughout your working day (Tip - I recommend installing a free pedometer app on your phone to keep track of how many steps you're taking. Even just getting up away from your desk and walking around the office really helps them add up!) , keep yourself well hydrated and choose nourishing foods instead of reaching for quick fixes like sugar and caffeine. I promise you, it sounds boring and simple but will help your mood, energy and how you feel about yourself!

Creating fresh memories is something I also really recommend. You could try taking a different route to wherever you need to get to, listening to some new upbeat music when you’re on your way there and home, grabbing your morning latte in a different coffee shop. The smallest things help to create new, more positive neural pathways in the brain instead of it being triggered to ruminate on the past. There’s nothing worse than passing that same coffee shop every morning where you might have met your ex for breakfast or always called them at lunch and thinking back to those times, dreading how you’re now going to get through the day!

Make new associations with work or school instead.

When it comes to friends, family and your social life, this is where you can be a little more selective. Spend time with people who you genuinely feel good, uplifted and safe around (i.e. not people who suck and drain your energy!) People who you can be transparent with but who aren’t going to encourage you to talk about the breakup over and over. There comes a point where going over the same old ground and trash talking your ex just isn’t helpful. 

Having good people around you who are compassionate about where you’re at but can still make sure the conversation isn’t centred around your ex will definitely help your healing. Laughter, even the shortest, most subtle bursts of it, is THE best medicine and the ultimate antidote to heartbreak. Having the right people on your team to encourage this can be amazing for your wellbeing!

I also really recommend using your social life as a tool for your healing. Surrounding yourself with existing friends but also again, making fresh memories by trying new things and meeting new people. This will help to infuse your world with a sense of moving forwards instead of staying stuck in the past.

Empower yourself to do what you want to do. Strike some sort of balance that’s right for you. If going out with friends after work is just too draining right now, put yourself first and stay home. It’s more than ok to take time out from your usual Thursday night cocktails (and as we all know too well, alcohol and heartbreak ain’t exactly a match made in heaven!)

If you know you just need time to rest your body and mind, do it. Healing is also about instilling your own boundaries and placing your emotional and physical needs as THE top priority when something isn’t a ‘must do’. 

I really hope you found this helpful! Wishing you a great week ahead as always and please do let me know in the comments if you have any more specific questions around this one!

Love,

Laura x