When I was going through my divorce there were many acts of kindness from my friends and family that helped me to get through a day - that otherwise would have had no purpose or meaning.
During a breakup, being kind to both yourself and others can really help to improve your mood. It makes you feel happier and can help to relieve some of the stress which is inevitable during this time.
Show yourself some compassion – so be sympathetic and understanding of yourself. Try not to beat yourself up and dwell on all the negatives. You’re grieving the end of your relationship and that takes time and you’ll experience a whole roller coaster of emotions along the way.
What is kindness?
Kindness is all the different ways we express care, concern and consideration for both ourselves and others.
In ‘The Little Book of Kindness’, David Hamilton describes it as ‘an honest, heartfelt expression’ – ‘It can be a thought, a word or an act that is motivated by a desire to help’.
Current scientific research shows that kindness brings about lasting well-being. It’s also the most important predictor of stability and satisfaction in a marriage.
Kindness not only has physical effects on the brain, but on the heart and immune system as well as other parts of the body.
Did you know that kindness is actually the opposite of stress?
You might have thought the opposite of stress would be calm, chilled and relaxed – but these represent the absence of stress.
The opposite of stress in physical effects is kindness.
Stress produces hormones such as adrenalin and cortisol which aren’t good for our bodies over a prolonged period of time.
However, when you’re being kind or someone’s being kind to you -the ‘kindness hormone’, known as oxytocin - is produced. You feel warm and connected.
Kindness produces the following effects in the body, which are the total opposite of what stress does:
Being kind helps to buffer the effects of stress.
Being kind also has a positive effect on our brain. Our brain is like a muscle and if we exercise it – it grows. When we show kindness the kindness and compassionate part of our brain grows but the stress part of the brain also reduces at the same time.
There are 5 positive effects of kindness:
It’s so important to be kind to yourself – especially during a breakup. Self-care means we’re valuing ourselves and our needs and desires. It also gives us more energy to be kind to others.
During a breakup I know it can be as much as you can do to get through the day – let alone find the time and energy for self-care. If this is how you’re feeling - start by making a list of all the things you could do. It can just be small things like:
I know even those things can feel like too much of an effort – but just try and do something for 5 minutes and see how you feel after. Try and make the time to build something into every day even if you have to force yourself at first. It’s part of the healing process to help you get over your breakup and move on with your life.
If you’re struggling to get over a breakup at the moment and need some support – email me at [email protected] and we can book in a free discovery call to discuss how I can help you.
You can also download my free guide – 10 Steps you can take right now to help you get over your breakup.