In this week’s Success Newsletter, I would like to reveal the significance of finding closure following a breakup or other relationship challenge or impasse and, the 6 steps to achieve closure.
First a quick update:
The Breakup Test
Are you heartbroken, angry, lost, lonely, confused, depressed, hung up, or pining over your ex? Do you know how your ex is truly affecting you and do you want to benefit from personalize advice, action steps and revelations? Take my free breakup test and get your own personalized report.
Are You Feeling Guilty Or Ashamed?
Do you feel guilty or ashamed for something you have done or for your past relationship or Ex? Do you know the difference between guilt and shame? Watch the video and learn how to overcome guilt and shame.
Now, let’s talk about the significance of finding closure following a breakup or other relationship challenge or impasse, and, the 6 steps to achieve closure.
In an interview I gave to Maggie Flecknoe, co-host of the new syndicated TV show “Morning Dose”, I revealed that 50% of women and 45% of men who took my Breakup Test reported that they did not experience closure with their ex. In other words, the majority of respondents reported that they are not over their ex.
What is closure?
I define closure as having expressed all of your thoughts and feelings about the relationship and having received all of the answers to your questions – the communication is complete and you now have an enlightened perspective on the relationship.
In other words, there is no more to be said or discussed – all questions have been answered and all thoughts and emotions have been clearly communicated.
Closure does not, though, imply that your ex will apologize for all of his/her actions, nor does it imply that he/she will ask for your forgiveness. I will elaborate on these points shortly.
Closure does not automatically imply that you will be instantly free of the pain of the breakup – overcoming loss, disappointment or even a sense of failure or foolishness are not resolved purely by closure; an additional process is required. However, closure helps you to move faster and easier through the grieving process.
Here are the 6 steps to closure following a relationship breakup or impasse:
Begin by becoming clear about what you experienced in the relationship – how it impacted you on all levels. Write it out along with a list of everything you want to say to your ex. At this stage hold nothing back.
Accept responsibility for the role you played in the relationship. Be honest with yourself – how did you contribute to the final outcome or demise of the relationship? Did you push away your ex? Did you sabotage the relationship? Did you refuse to be vulnerable or commit emotionally?
3. The One Thing
Review your list of self-exploration (what you experienced and what you want to communicate.) Now answer this question: What is the one thing you were afraid to say or communicate during the relationship and/or following the breakup of the relationship? Now add that question to your list.
4. Tell Me Why
A critical component of closure is having all of your questions answered. As revealed by my Breakup Test, 30% of male and 30% female respondents said they are still “consumed by the drive to get answers about ‘Why?’ it happened.”
This is the question that most people want answered: Why? Why did you do what you did or why did you fail to do something I wanted or was hoping you would do?
Remember this key point: if you ask that question, your ex may give you an answer you don’t want to hear, even if it is something you need to hear. Your ex might rightly or wrongly blame you or your ex might reveal something about him/herself or about you that you were not expecting.
What do you do when you don’t get the answer to “Why?”
As I explained in my TV interview with Maggie Flecknoe, your ex might not actually have the answer to “Why?” Your ex might be completely open in his/her choice to meet with you or answer your questions and your ex might still be lacking the self-awareness or insights required to explain his/her motivation. Not everyone fully understands their own behavior. In fact, very few people truly understand themselves and their motivations or drives. Hence, they come to a behavior expert or therapist for assistance to understand themselves and how to change their behavioral drives and motivations.
5. Openness and Acceptance
Be open with your communication; be open to listening to the responses to your questions and to the things your ex wants or chooses to communicate to you.
Be willing to accept the truth and your ex’s perspective – even if you do not agree with it. Remember, we all see the world through our own filters and our own programming. You and your ex may have wanted different things in life i.e. you both have different values, and that will impact their perspective. Accordingly, be open and willing to accept their perspective.
6. Self-compassion & forgiveness
During the discussion, there might be revelations, shocking revelations about yourself as well as your partner. Be willing to be compassionate towards yourself for whatever mistakes you made. Be willing to learn from the mistakes.
Real closure will involve forgiveness – of self and others. You might not be ready to do that immediately following the discussion with your ex. Simply remind yourself that forgiveness is your goal. Do it for yourself.
Remember that your ex might not be able to answer all of your questions and therefore you might need professional help to understand what happened and why it happened.
Finally, consider carefully about the venue and timing of the discussion. An open neutral space is best, and, be patient, your ex might not be ready to meet or give you all the answers. You both must be open, ready and willing. Yes, ask for what you want; push to meet if you feel it is necessary; simply accept that your ex might not agree to meet and you can request a response in writing or you can write a letter to him/her. Wait for a couple of days after writing the letter to ensure it is complete and that you are ready to send it.
For more help, strategies and insights to help you get over your ex and have a new healthy, happy relationship, buy my new audio book/program “Get Over Your Ex Now!”
As I reveal in my audio book, you have to have more than passion to make a relationship successful. You also need intimacy and commitment.
Make your partner a priority!
If you would like personal help to heal the past, overcome negative emotions or change your subconscious beliefs, book a one-on-one session with me.
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I wish you the best and remind you “Believe in yourself -You deserve the best!”
Patrick Wanis Ph.D.
Celebrity Life Coach, Human Behavior & Relationship Expert & SRTT Therapist