May 26, 2015 1:00 AM

Author: Chris Dilley


There’s no doubt that our physical health is often influenced by our mental and emotional health. Research shows that depression has been linked to a number of physical ailments such as migraines, headaches, back pain, digestive issues and many others.

The end of a relationship can often create a sense of loss that if unchecked, can lead to a serious bout of depression. Whether you’re going through a break-up or a divorce, the emotional fallout can be as devastating as the death of a loved one.

It’s important to take steps to protect your physical health during this time. Here are some simple things you can do to stay healthy after a break-up.

Don’t Stop Moving.

Exercise is a great way to combat depression. Raising your heart rate will cause your brain to release endorphins, chemicals that act as analgesics, which in turn diminish the perception of pain within the body. 

Take Stock.

Reflecting on your relationship in a healthy and constructive way can actually help you move forward in life.

Consider the following questions:

  • What would you differently if you could do the last relationship over again?
  • Did you learn anything from the last relationship?
  • What do you want out of future relationships?

Positive reflection will help you process the relationship while ensuring that your next relationship is better than the last.

Take a Break.

People aren’t interchangeable and going from one relationship to another without taking the time to process your feelings, can lead to further emotional fallout. Bruce Etringer, PhD and pain management specialist says, “Feelings are like tires. Even if you bury them deep, they’ll eventually rise to the surface.” Allow yourself time to grieve the end of your relationship. It’s important to fully heal before moving on.

Be You.

Often in relationships, we find ourselves putting what we enjoy on the back burner in order to make time for someone else’s needs. Now is a great time to get back to being you. Do what you enjoy. Spend time with friends and have fun whenever you can. Reconnect with yourself and the people who care most about you. A good support system can help mitigate even the worst of situations.

The end of a relationship doesn’t have to be about loss. It can be about creating a whole new beginning for a happier you. 


Chris Dilley

Chris Dilley works in the Office of Public Affairs.

depression

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