Thought Catalog

16 Uncomfortable Signs Your Breakup Was The Right Choice (Even If You’re In Pain)

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Woman in front of neon lights
Henri Pham

1. You feel like you’re getting to know yourself again, and you are just now realizing how long it’s been since you’ve actually made time to learn more about yourself.

2. Much of the time you hate those days and those nights and those moments that you are by yourself, but once in a while, you feel a small amount of peace –  like maybe, at some point, this won’t be that bad, and might even be kind of nice.

3. You miss having a person to talk to, but you don’t necessarily miss specifically talking to them.

4. When you think about the future now, it seems intimidating, but not suffocating like it used to feel.

5. You finally have the chance to figure out what you like, outside of another person. The things you spend your time doing, the books you spend your time reading, the tv shows you spend your time watching – you are able to see now that these are the things you like, because you’re no longer having to adjust what you want to watch or what you want to do in order to make fair compromises for someone else. It can be all about you right now.

6. Even though all you can think about right now is how badly you’re hurting, there is a little spark somewhere in the back of your mind that senses the fact that this will be worth it at some point in the future, whether that’s six months or six years from now.

7. When the pain of your breakup is particularly brutal, you comfort yourself by thinking about how you’d feel if you were still with them. Even if getting back together seems easier on the surface level, when you actually think about being back together with them, it makes you feel panicked or stifled or anxious rather than comforted.

8. You’re actually making an effort to learn how to enjoy your own company, without having to depend on someone else to entertain you or cheer you up or help you relax.

9. Your relationships with friends or family or other loved ones are deepening in a way that you don’t think they would have if you were still in that relationship.

10. Sometimes you still cry about it, often at very random times, but the crying feels more like pain is coming out of you rather than it feeling like the pain is just being stirred around inside your body.

11. You’re trying intimidating things again – applying to jobs you would never normally apply to, trying out new hobbies, throwing yourself in the running for an upcoming promotion. These things are outside of your comfort zone, but they are also things you would have never tried if you were still in the safe bubble of having a significant other to fall back on.

12. You are learning things about yourself that you know you would have never learned if you were still with them. You are learning how you comfort yourself when no one else is there to be your partner, you are learning how you find your confidence inwardly instead of outwardly, and you are learning how to seek out internal validation instead of needing someone else to give it to you.

13. You are asking yourself uncomfortable but important questions – is this the career path I really want to stay on? am I challenging myself enough? am I making space in my life to try and help people? am I still putting a conscious effort towards learning new things? should I move to that city I’ve always secretly wanted to move to?

14. Below your pain and your current loneliness, you still feel a simmering sense of peace, and it grows a tiny bit more palpable every day.

15. Despite how jumbled and lost you feel, you still feel hopeful (and sometimes excited) about tomorrow, and next week, and next month.

16. Even through all the pain, you like who you are, and you like the fact that you’d rather be uncomfortable and be moving towards growth than be comfortable and stagnant. TC mark

Kim Quindlen

I'm a staff writer for Thought Catalog. I like comedy and improv. I live in Chicago. My Uber rating is just okay.

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