Love is one of the most powerful emotions we can feel, making heartbreak one of the most painful.
Science has proven that love stimulates the brain in a similar way to recreational drugs, which means the symptoms of withdrawal can be overwhelming.
Common symptoms include anxiety, exhaustion, insomnia, and depression, as well as some very real physical withdrawal symptoms.
They say that only time can mend a broken heart, but New York Times bestseller and “love life” strategist Matthew Hussey says there’s another way for anyone going through a breakup to get back on track.
According to Hussey, there are two routes to choose from when you’re heartbroken: the “hangover recovery method” and the “athlete’s recovery method.” But only one really works.
He told Business Insider: “Imagine you’ve been on a big night out. The next day you’re hungover and you order a pizza, watch a crappy movie or trashy TV, and sit in your PJs. You do all of those things to feel good in that moment, but none of those things will actually cleanse your body of the toxins, or fulfill or nourish you.”
That, he explained is the hangover recovery method, which he does not advocate.
Instead, he recommends imitating the actions of an athlete.
“If you injure a part of your body, the shoulder for example, you’re not going to stop training, you’re just going to train all the other parts of the body,” he said. “The core, for instance, or if you can still run, do that. [Then] when the shoulder eventually comes back online, you’ll be in the best shape you can possibly be in, and ready to go.”
It’s the same when it comes to breakups, Hussey said.
“You can’t go the hangover way and sleep around so that you feel wanted again, drink to feel numb, eat ice cream, and watch TV – those things only make you feel good or numb in the moment.”
He said that the “athlete” route is to “go build friendships, double down on the family and work aspects of their lives and maybe take on some new passion projects.”
“That way you’re building your social skills even if your heart is not ready yet to be intimate or flirt with anyone else,” he said.
“You can just enjoy interesting conversations, and train every other part of your life so that when your heart comes back online, everything is ready to go.”
For advice and tips on dating and relationships head to Hussey’s blog at howtogettheguy.com.