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How to Find Yourself after a Breakup

By Laura Smith, Chief Groovy Chick, The Breakup Lounge

Today, I'm going to give you tips on finding out who YOU are after a breakup.  Whether you're dealing with a divorce or breakup, the moment you realize how much of yourself you've lost in the relationship can be eye-opening and devastating all at once.  Maybe you gave up some friendships in order to make time for him and his friends.  Maybe you took an interest in his hobbies and forgot about your own.  Maybe you spent a lot of time being in his life ~ while he spent little in yours.  Sound familiar?

It does to me because that's exactly what I did.  Instead of keeping some interests and friends "mine," I morphed into his world and lost my own.  So it was a double whammy when our relationship was over because he took his world with him.  I was left...alone and confused.

Foosball 2So what did I do?  After deciding that QVC wasn't such a good boyfriend, I decided to be my own buddy.  I decided to seek some adventure.  I remember being in the restroom of a restaurant and seeing a flyer for a foosball league.  I had played foosball a lot as a kid because my parents had a table in our basement.  I had earned the title "Goddess of Foosball" in the house and I reigned supreme for years.  So when I saw that flyer, this was my thought process:

"Hmmmm, foosball, eh?"

"I was pretty good at foosball as a kid.  Maybe I should consider it."

"What if I stink?  What if I make a fool out of myself? Can I do this alone? Eeeeek!"

"But what if it's kind of fun?"

The league matches were on Mondays and it just so happened that my daughter was with her dad every Monday so I'd actually be free.  There went that excuse.  You see, sometimes, when we're contemplating trying something new, it can make us uncomfortable.  That's when the "excuse monster" comes out and tries to keep you from exploring new things.  How do you keep him at bay?  Read on.

A few weeks later, as I parked in front of the bar/restaurant where the first informational league meeting was being held, I sat there...frozen.  I didn't know a soul inside.  I called my friend, Diane, and said, "I don't think I can do this."  

She told me to get my butt in there as I didn't have anything to lose.  So much for subtlety!!  So I did it.  I walked in and felt immediately like an outsider.  I went up to the organizer and told him that I wasn't part of a team and that I didn't know anyone but that I'd be sitting in back.  I also asked him not to shine any attention on me and my situation.  

Sure enough, at the end of his instructions, he piped up and said, "Oh, by the way, Laura is in the back and she has no team and she knows no one."  What?  Really?  Talk about worst nightmare becoming a reality.  

However, a kind gentleman named Murry had no partner, either.  We formed a team and there began my immersion into the foosball sub-culture.  I had no idea that there are actually professional foosball players and that the game is much more technical than I ever imagined so let's just say it...I sucked.

However, on the flip side, I was sooooo proud of myself.  I had done this for me.  I felt alive.  It took courage and I had it!!  I also met some wonderful people and truly enjoyed every Monday night for the 6 1/2 months the league played.  It was so fun!

If you try something new, I can guarantee two things will happen:

1.  You will gain confidence.  It took some major guts for me to walk in that door to join the league that day.  What is something you could do that would take guts?  Think about that.  What are you interested in trying?  Once you take the plunge and do it, you will feel different inside.  YOU will be honoring you.  There will be a little spring in your step that wasn't there before.  Why?  Because you, my dear, are taking care of you and fulfilling your own life's desires!  Go for it!  Stand tall and proud!

2.  You will have more fun than you think, I promise.  There are lots of pluses to a new experience.  Typically, you get to meet some new people.  Expanding your social circle is always good when you're going through a difficult time.  

Oftentimes, it takes your mind off you and your situation.  In addition, as I pointed out, you have a blast!  Once that initial ~ oh my god! I'm doing this and it's kinda scary ~ wears off, you will find yourself enjoying yourself immensely!

So what is something you want to try, say, in the next month?  Could you commit to trying just one new thing this week?  I think so.  I hope so.  After all, you're worth it, Baby!

Shine On!


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You basically described how I felt after my divorce as well. I'd spent so long identifying myself as his wife, I didn't have a "me" without him to fall back on.

Instead of foosball, my re-entry into the world of the living was my first ever ballroom dance class, also showing up without a partner. I was sure I was never coming back after the first class, but when the male instructor's assistant started alternating between the partner-less students, I found that dancing actually could be fun. I went to that class for years, and I eventually became a competitive dancer!

It's amazing where those first scary steps to independence can take you!

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