YOGA FOR HEARTBREAK

It’s time to let go of that which no longer serves you which includes your lover even if you’re deeply in love. I urge you, implore you, challenge you, support you and write from a loving space. When bad times outweigh the good, or your health suffers or you have forgotten what it feels like to flow, be present and joyful because you are eclipsed by a toxic relationship then you have to be brave and check in with your heart even if this means a break-up will entail heartbreak.

As I write this by the sea whilst teaching on a yoga retreat I can feel my throat tighten, heart sink, tears  sting. I’ve just seen a cruise ship leaving port which reminds me of a  lovely cruise spent with my lover of 2.5 years. It’s been 6 months since our relationship was severed abruptly and the tears still come unexpectedly but less frequently as time  passes. I still miss him so much, my tall, dark and handsome lover whom I wanted to spent the rest of my life with despite the toxicity of our incompatibility.

I sit and grant myself these tears of pain and heartache for they are unavoidable in life as they are tears of grief. We have to accept that we will lose friends, lovers, family members and pets during our beautiful, gifted yet sometimes sad lifetimes.

There are birds chirping above me and the smell of the sea is so sweet, the Spanish sun warms my skin. I’m back in the present again…pen to paper and not suffering in the past. Writing brings that present moment joy as does being creative in whatever way you enjoy (more of this later on).

It is human nature to want to ‘belong’ and to feel loved and supported but that is no reason to grasp on to a relationship that is harming your health and heart.

Six months ago whilst travelling to teach at my Swiss Yoga Retreat I had made the decision to go cold turkey on my partner since he played up whenever I left the country and I cut myself off from my phone, Facebook and email. People had paid good money and invested their precious spare time by booking on to my retreat and I had to serve them.

Towards the end of the trip, I was walking in the Swiss Alps and experienced a glimmer of joy amongst nature in the present moment. It was such a sweet moment to remember what joy felt like and it was a revelation and turning point in which I knew would have consequences, but for the better in the long run.

Our relationship did not end ideally, which would be to talk like adults and maintain friendship, instead of an abrupt severance. This is often the case in break-ups I’ve gleaned from my research. One minute you’re in spoons with oxytocin flowing then the next you’re blocked from all contact and ties cut, heart abandoned, feel good hormones gone.

I was totally devastated but at the very core of me knew that it would be ok because I needed to find ‘me’ again and compatibility, balance and harmony in a relationship with a like-minded soul who would be prepared to work at ‘us’ and be honest and open in communication. When home I made a plan and threw myself back in to spirituality, yoga
and meditation finding a routine and therefore solace in the knowledge that healing would ensue.

Valentine’s Day is not always a happy time for some who may be craving a relationship or grieving a past lover or struggling with a current one, which inspired me to share my ‘Yoga for Heartbreak’ tips with you.
I hope that at least a small part of this article
will help you reveal, deal and heal your current
situation and fall back in love with yourself and life

YOGA

These two poses help you clear and open your heart and throat chakras which may be closed and repressed. Acknowledge your posture first. Do you feel hunched and protecting your heart? Have you lost the confidence to communicate clearly, speaking your mind and truth?

Matsyasana (Fish Pose)

Lie on your back, straighten legs and lift hips tucking hands slightly beneath your buttocks, palms facing down. Draw your forearms and  elbows inwards

Inhale, bend your elbows and press firmly into forearms and elbows to lift your head and upper body away from the floor and begin to find the natural curve of your spine

Firm your shoulder blades into your back and lift chest higher, elongating spine

Gently release the crown of your head down towards the floor, placing a minimal amount of weight on your head if it reaches the ground

Stay in the pose anywhere from 5 to 10 breaths. To come out of it, engage your core, press firmly into forearms, gently lift your head away from the
floor. Tuck your chin into chest and place the back of your head down.

Chakrasana (Wheel Pose)

Lay flat on your back with your arms at your sides. Bend knees, keeping feet parallel and aligned with your hips. Draw heels close to the edges of buttocks.

Reach your arms up overhead, bend your elbows placing palms on the floor either side of your head, fingertips beneath shoulders. Keep your forearms parallel as you extend fingers toward heels. Reach elbows directly up toward the ceiling.

Inhaling, press feet firmly into the floor and lift your hips upwards straightening arms. Contract buttocks, thigh, and abdominal muscles to support your lower back.

 Keep arms and legs parallel as you’re lifting and hold for a few breaths. Avoid resting your bodyweight on your head; you’ll gain strength in the limbs with practice

Release the pose by first bringing the crown of head to the mat, then your whole body. Rest on your back with knees bent and dropped together.

HUGGING

You will feel low physiologically due to many chemical processes in the body which can be dealt with naturally. The hormone oxytocin from hugging and spooning can be generated in other ways by stroking animals, hugging others or by booking in a massage etc.

No one available when you need a hug? In London’s Hyde Park there are ‘Free Hugs’ events or you can book yourself on to a yoga or Tantra retreat and feel the love. Don’t be afraid to ‘let it all out’. That’s what these events are for and they are a safe space. 

MEDITATE

Sit quietly daily and meditate on how to nurture and heal yourself and find empathy and forgiveness in your partner for any wrongdoing. This may take a long time and will take courage and energy but it is part of the healing process.

Sit on what may have gone wrong and when and how you could’ve dealt with it differently for the better of you both. There are always two sides to a story so try to find compassion even if it’s the last thing you feel like feeling! Not only will this help you vibrate on a higher level which will attract positive things in your life, it will also help quash negative emotions such as anger, bitterness and resentment etc., which do not serve you and tend to get stuck as a repeating story in one’s mind. Accept, greet and embrace the good memories from your relationship as they come and be grateful for the good times. Let the emotions flow through you without judgment; nothing is permanent. You are healing.

MINDFULNESS &
COMMUNICATION

When you learn how to be a mindful communicator it can help you succeed in many areas of your life which will in turn have a positive impact on your relationships. Since humans learn how to communicate from an early age by watching signals around them, if you have a problem with communication you may have some healing work to be done from the past. 

Remember in relationships and communication that we all process information differently so it’s worth spending some time on enhancing your basic communication skills. This will help you:
* Better express how you feel
* Better explain your needs
* Become more aware of who you are
* Develop deep intimacy in your relationships

Communication skills to be mindful of:
* Being an excellent listener
* Show an interest in what someone is saying
* Never gossip or backstab; address an issue
directly
* Treat people how you’d like to be treated yourself
* Think before you speak and maintain a sense of
humour

HEALERS
If you really are so distraught before, during or after a break-up, then rest assured that there are humans trained to deal with your pain and subsequent healing so you’re not feeling so overwhelmed and lost.

Relate, a relationship charity (relate.org.uk) has a user-friendly website that walks you through the grieving and loss process so that you are
less overwhelmed with all the swirling and conflicting emotions and rollercoaster of thoughts and feelings. You can book into see one of their professionally trained team, hire a divorce coach, Counsellor or surround yourself with loving and supportive people who will listen and lend a caring ear from a neutral stance.

Make sure you’re in a safe environment when you’re ready to open up and share. I joined the ‘Wild Woman Sisterhood’ and went walking in the woods with some amazing women in London who weren’t afraid to remove their masks and pretend that everything was ok. They were raw, real, loving and supportive and I am thankful to them for their transparency and support. If you’re open to it, you’ll gravitate towards those who will heal and help you and you’ll realise that this pain and process is just part of life and nature and you’re not alone, not a
victim. You are a beautiful soul who deserves the best in this short life that we are graced with.

TRUST THE PROCESS

Do keep busy and productive but DO allow emotions to arise instead of lying under the duvet heavily weighing down in pain or drowning your sorrows in alcohol.
We are all here for each other and have all experienced sadness or losses so don’t be afraid to remove your mask and keep it real. “Better out then in” is such a good expression! Give yourself time to grieve, take each minute, hour, day, week as it comes and keep focussing on the positives such as what amazing things you can do with your new free time and energy. Your future is bright, trust in that.

Make a list of all the things you wanted to do and your partner didn’t and do them or you didn’t have time for and schedule them into your diary or year planner.

Rediscover or even reinvent yourself. Book in some treatments, use colour therapy as a confidence tool or try a new look, book, recipe, hobby or hairstyle.

What are your passions or goals?  Identify them and pursue them. You are free to be you. You deserve happiness, love and light. Plan for the future to evolve into the future desired you.
When you are ready, find ways in which to express yourself such as writing, dancing, poetry, music or acting that will assist with any self-esteem issues resulting from a break-up by giving you a goal and sense of accomplishment. These creative hobbies will also keep you present therefore not feeling anger from the past nor worrying about the future. In the present moment you can find joy.

Remember the relationships we develop with ourselves impact others so stay on the path and journey of loving yourself. When you start loving yourself you will attract those who will give you all the love you can handle and if they don’t, let them go. 

WRITTEN BY- AMANDA YORK
AMANDA HAS BEEN TEACHING YOGA IN
LONDON AND OVERSEAS SINCE 2011 AND IS
TRAINED IN NLP, MINDFULNESS AND RELATIONSHIP PSYCHOLOGY OFFERING HOLISTIC
WELL BEING FOR MIND, BODY AND SPIRIT.
YOU CAN FIND HER TIPS ON SOCIAL MEDIA
BY FOLLOWING GYMANDA OR YOGAMANDA
OR JOIN ONE OF HER OUTDOOR CLASSES IN
LONDON OR WEEKLONG RETREATS IN SWITZERLAND, IBIZA, SPAIN AND COSTA RICA.
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