It can be very hard to open up to love again after you’ve been hurt. I understand because I’ve been there. When we get disappointed, the natural tendency is to want to give up on love. But if we don’t allow ourselves to open up to love again, we can miss out on the good things in life and we can miss out on the chance of finding the love we truly strive for. Here are ten ways to help you open up to love again.
1. Think of heartbreak as something of the past. You can’t take the heartbreak with you wherever you go, it can be hard to forget it but it doesn’t have to be the first thought that comes to your mind whenever you meet someone who has potential. The person who broke your heart in the past has nothing to offer you in the present, so why let them shape your future?
2. Trust the universe. What if life has better plans for you? Plans that don’t involve tears and heartaches. This is why the only way we can trust the universe is to let go of what we can’t change, or stop trying to change someone who is not willing to.
3. Take the lessons. The truth is sometimes you have to get knocked down to learn how to stand back up. To open up to love again, you have to look at the lessons your heartbreak taught you about yourself; maybe it taught you to trust your intuition or to love yourself more, or maybe it taught you how to walk away or when to draw the line. Learning from your past mistakes is the only way you can lead yourself to find love you deserve rather than crumbs of love.
4. Don’t take your bitterness or your resentment. It can be easy to think everyone’s out to get you when you’ve been hurt before, but instead of being stuck on the pain and everything that went wrong, allow yourself the power of forgiveness and remind yourself that whoever hurt you was not an evil person, they just weren’t the best person for you.
5. Understand that closing your heart off is not going to make you any happier. It’s normal–even healthy to have some walls up, but to close yourself off completely and have a negative outlook on love is only going to set you up for regret and misery. The grass is not always greener on the safe side.
6. Be honest with yourself. Be honest with yourself about what went wrong, sometimes it’s you and sometimes it’s them. Sometimes it’s timing and sometimes it’s your own fears and insecurities. If you can be honest with yourself about what exactly went wrong and pin down how you contributed to it, you are more likely to avoid these mistakes in the future.
7. Accept that love will always be risky. Opening up to someone or falling in love with someone will always be risky and the outcome will never be guaranteed, but as with everything in life, some things are totally worth the risk, sometimes taking the risk is the only way you can actually feel alive.
8. Take your time. Take your time to heal. Take your time to get to know someone new. Take your time to listen to your heart and pay close attention to your feelings. Take your time to open up to love again so you can make sure you are ready for the right kind of love when it knocks on your door.
9. Let go of comparisons. Comparing yourself to others, or comparing others to your ex will only impede you from enjoying the moment. Don’t judge a book by its cover and don’t be so hard on yourself. We are each on our own journeys and we should trust that our story will eventually have a happy ending.
10. Remember that you are lovable. Think of all the people who love you and the people who think highly of you. Think of the good things you do for people and the ways you support your friends and family. Think of how you keep trying to be a better person; let these be reminders that you are a person worthy of love and that you deserve phenomenal love.