A Clinical psychologist on how to get through V Day when you’re heartbroken

With Valentine’s Day around the corner – and heartbroken people hurting across the globe in the run up to the ‘day of love’ – Online Private Therapy Clinic, HelloSelf, has asked one of their top Clinical Psychologists for advice on how we can deal with heartache.

Dr. Rumina Taylor, Clinical Psychologist and Chief Clinical Officer at HelloSelf, has a vast amount of experience as a couples therapist, alongside clinical training from the Institute of Psychiatry at King’s College London. Her experience has allowed her to present her top tips on how we can cope on February 14th if we are feeling broken-hearted.

Whilst Valentine’s Day is truly perceived to be the ‘day of love’ by many, it’s a holiday that can hurt the broken hearted like nothing else. Whether it’s enhancing deep feelings of loneliness or upsetting feelings of betrayal, we’ve all been there, and sometimes the only thing that can help is talking to someone.

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To support aching hearts this Valentine’s Day, Dr Rumina Taylor, a Clinical Psychologist from HelloSelf, has revealed her expert therapy tips on how you can get through Valentine’s Day when your heart is hurting.

Valentine’s Day can be a trigger for memories of a relationship that has been lost. Heartbreak is painful and heavy and for some it can feel like failure; that a relationship has not been able to be kept but instead ended. For others, it can lead to impulsive behaviour.

Many people choose to enter new relationships on a whim as this feels like progress forward in the short term. Unfortunately, long term, these relationships are frequently unsatisfactory, eventually ending and the cycle starts again. It can be hard to know what to do next in place of this when there’s no crystal ball to help see into the future.

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“Firstly, remember that to develop and build a loving relationship with someone, you need more than a day. It may be helpful to consider that many others will feel like you about this day. It’s normal.

“Take the opportunity to consider the relationship you have with yourself. You also need to be nurtured and Valentine’s Day can be the perfect chance to consider your own self-care and how to look after your needs. What can you plan that will give you a sense of pleasure and achievement? Who could you connect or reconnect with? Valentine’s Day doesn’t need to only be about romantic relationships. Why not do something special for someone you care about? Many of us place more value on relationships with partners rather than friends and family. These relationships are just as important and fulfilling.

“If you find yourself feeling sad or worried about your relationship status try and identify anything running through your mind that might be causing these difficult feelings, ask yourself if these thoughts are facts or actually opinions? Some people don’t feel worthy unless they have a significant other. We know our self-worth is not solely dependent on whether we are in a successful relationship.

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“We all have many strengths, other things and people in our lives that matter. Spend some time identifying all the things that make you who you are. Try and recall examples of when you felt worthy that were separate from a romantic relationship. Setting time aside to reflect on these can be particularly helpful.

“Sometimes we may need a push to get out of our heads and back into our lives. If that’s the case, engaging in an activity that pulls us into the present moment can be useful. For example, doing some exercise that’s guided such as attending a class with an instructor or watching a film that captures your attention. You could also practice mindfulness meditations. These could be activity based such as mindful walking or guided exercises focused on breathing.

“If you do feel ready to start a new romantic relationship, why not use Valentine's Day for this? Plan the steps you would take to start the process and make sure each step is small. How can you meet people? How could it feel relaxed and fun and not pressured and scary? Who could you ask for help or advice?

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“If this doesn’t work out, that's also OK. We are our best selves when we have the opportunity to learn, so if it doesn’t go to plan or how you wanted, make sure you take one learning from it. What went well? What did you do well? What did the potential partner do well? What would you do differently next time?

“Lastly, don’t forget that Valentine’s Day is simply just a day and love can be expressed any time, any place, anywhere, on any day. Valentine’s Day will come and go often like our feelings do. Also remember that you are so much more than that.

“If you're struggling with ongoing feelings of loneliness, worry or sadness, it might be a good idea to reach out to a therapist. They can support you to better understand and manage these feelings, and importantly feel like yourself again.” – Dr. Rumina Taylor, Clinical Psychologist at HelloSelf.

HelloSelf is the UK's leading video therapy platform, allowing you to speak to the best Clinical Psychologists at a time and place that works for you. Through tailored clinical connections, custom-built technology and between session support, HelloSelf is here to help you say Hello to your best Self more often.