5 Ways To Choose Joy When Your Heart Hurts

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When your heart hurts, when it physically feels broken, how are you suppose to be happy? When has your heart ever hurt?

Did someone break your heart? Was someone mean to you? Did you have to break someone else's heart? Did someone leave you?

I think it's safe to say that at some point in your life, you may have experienced heart-break. I know I have.

Being the emotional woman I am, I feel things so deeply. In my gut, to my core. So when my heart hurts, my body hurts. I don't want to eat, I feel like I can't workout, my head hurts and I feel sick to my stomach.

Where Things Get Tricky

Everyday I wake up and I coach women through their health and fitness journeys. I teach them how to be confident, how to rock their body, but I also teach them how to rock life. Showing them that they are in control of their happiness.

I do, 100% believe, that you can choose joy everyday.

That's really easy to say though when you feel happy already. When life is seemingly going really well for you.

I know people have read my posts and thought "okay yeah, bitch, you're happy, we get it. I'm not and there is no way I can be." I know people have thought that, because I use to feel that way when I saw people saying what I do now.

Recently life has been teaching me a lesson I don't like. Because its hard. Maybe I'm feeling the way I do because Mercury is in Retrograde (pardon my crazy). More and more I'm being put in situations where I have to cultivate my own happiness in the midst of a shit storm. My heart is hurting and I feel vulnerable.

I had to break someones heart

I miss my son

These two things have ripped my insides apart and tossed them into the street to be driven over my a semi truck, not once, but twice.

Life is happening and I've been put in situations where I'm not "just always happy". I have to create it. I have to choose joy instead of my hurt.

You Have A Choice

You were not born to simply get hit and take it. To wallow in your sadness for the rest of your life.  That is not the life you are here to live. Sad things, heartbreaking things, earth shattering and devastating things are going to happen to you and your heart will hurt so bad (though I don't wish this upon anyone).

We think we don't have a choice, that when we feel the sadness--we must stay there. That isn't the case though. Please, don't fight me on this one. We always have a  choice, I think it's easier for us though, to choose sadness. Because it's familiar. It's not scary to stay in sadness. It's comforting.

The other choice though? To choose joy and gratitude. That takes stepping outside of your comfort zone, which no one really likes. We must do it though.

Because maybe through your sadness and heartbreak, the one choice you make to choose joy, will be the single moment that you grow and get stronger through whatever situation you are in. Because now you are no longer the victim, you are the mother fucking goddess who is in control and always has been--you're just not realizing it though.

We get lost, we feel sad and we give life to the story of sadness in our heads. We stay there. We just stay. We feel helpless to our pain.

When you feel heartbreak, you don't have to ignore those feelings. From a beautiful friend and a woman I look up to so highly, Stephanie Estice, she taught me that these feelings sometimes just want to be acknowledged. They don't need a new home in your heart, they don't need to stay. You can simply acknowledge where you feel this hurt in your body.

On Choosing Joy

So how do you choose joy? Once you acknowledge those feelings of hurt, and realize that you can write a different story.

Here is how I do it:

  • Step one, like we talked about, acknowledge those feelings of hurt. Where are they on your body? Seriously. When I'm hurt, I feel sadness all over my body. Sometimes in my gut, sometimes a lump in my throat, sometimes my heart. Where is your hurt? Shut your eyes, acknowledge it, take 3-5 big deep breaths into that area. In through the nose, out through the mouth.
  • Cry it out, dance it out, work it out, paint it out, love it out. Physically doing something that isn't focusing on the hurt is so important. When I'm hurt I don't want to workout, but what I do love is to dance. Sometimes feelings of hurt and sadness need a way out of the body, so in a way that honors your body, get that shit out.
  • Meditate. Now listen, I'm not magnificent mediator. I do it because I feel more like me after. I feel centered, I feel like I can breathe without hurt again. 1 min, 3 min, 5 min, 10 min or as long as you want. Meditation isn't about how long you can sit still. There is no judgement here. I love this guided mediation from Gabrielle Bernstein. Click HERE to listen to this 5 min guided meditation.
  • Attitude of gratitude.  When hurt fills your heart, it's easy to focus on all the crappy things happening to you. Instead, you can make the small mindset shift to gratitude. I pick three things that I'm grateful for. Sometimes they are big things. Sometimes they are things like "I'm grateful for internet to watch Greys Anatomy".  Again, there is no judgement here.
  • Have a list of things that make you happy, so when you feel anything but happy, you know what to do and where to go. Write a physical list of the things that bring you joy. For me? I like going to eat alone, getting a new book, getting my nails done, going for a hike alone. All of these things bring my peace, I love them. So when I'm working to be happy again, I'll pick one of the things I know make me happy.

There are many more ways to choose joy, to become happy again when your heart hurts. I hope these few that I've shared with you help you in every way you need.

What I hope the most though, is that you realize happiness is always a choice. You don't have to be stuck in your broken heart. While there is nothing wrong with feeling sadness, sadness is not your home.

xoxo

Rachel