Closure, that unpopular C-word that leaves otherwise sane people feeling stuck. Moving on from what was once an important piece of your life can be a difficult or painful thing to do. Without proper closure there may be sleepless nights, worrying and those awful “what if” questions pondering through your thoughts… not a great feeling at all. So what do you do now?
I recently had to end a friendship that was very near and dear to my heart. After the relationship, the lack of closure almost drove me over the edge. I didn’t quite know how to deal with it at first. But during that period, I went through a series of steps that helped me ‘get over it’ and bounce back to my usual happy-go-lucky self again.
Here are 5 ways to find closure so you can move on:
1. Examine how it ended - Is there a reason that you haven’t been able to let go? Holding on to something that is no longer there is just unhealthy. The first step is to take a closer look at how it all went down. Ask yourself why you are dwelling on the past and identify why you are afraid to to move on. The pain, hurt, anger and disappointment will diminish once you have a realistic understanding of the situation.
2. Determine what you’ve learned from it - Have you ever heard the saying everything happens for a reason? We are all divine creatures with real emotions and feelings, so it’s natural to feel attached to something that you were once so close too. Take this time to focus on the positives! Make a list of your best talents, gifts and assets. Figure out what lessons you learned while dealing with your situation and try to think of the happier times.
3. Apply those lessons to your life – Moving on involves taking responsibility for yourself. You may or may have not done anything wrong to deserve to be in this situation, but if you have, take mental notes or write down what you think went wrong. Some people like to write in journals, write poems or create music or artwork to express themselves and to get things in perspective. Here’s an example: if you just broke up with a lying, cheating ex – but saw all the signs of this person being unfaithful – apply that knowledge to your future relationships and don’t settle for anyone’s crap again. You deserve happiness!
4. Grieve the loss - Your loss may actually be a gain if whatever or whomever you lost wasn’t right for you. During the grieving period, only engage in activities by that bring you peace and comfort. If your situation still leaves you feeling down, this may not be an easy task. But take all the time you need! Remember, moving on is much easier said than done, but you can get through this if you just take it one day at a time at your own pace.
5. Getting on with your life – Whether you are moving on after the ending of a relationship, job, lifestyle or even a way of thinking, it’s important accept that it is over and done… it’s time to get on with your life! You have a future ahead of you that depends on you letting go of the past. Determine what’s most important for your next move and make your next move your best move.
If you are going though a storm in your life, have faith and remember that there is indeed light on the other end of the tunnel.
Inspiring African American Achievers