I have learned so much from my mother. From the basics like tying my shoes to much more complex things like how to get over heartbreak. The lessons she has planted in me are too many to number, I’m grateful for all of them. She is pretty much right about everything, which is super annoying (please don’t tell her I said that. I think I can still get whoppins). How to overcome hurt
One of the best things she ever taught me was how to hurt. That sounds strange, I know. But trust me, it’s definitely a skill worth learning. Life is long and humans do strange things to other humans – at some point, something is going break you down. But, you don’t have to let hurt have the last word. Obviously, all hurt is not equal. There are frustrations and hurt feelings, and then there are years-in-the-making heartbreak.
These situations can either make you bitter or can produce growth to make you better – but both cannot occur at the same time. You get to choose. Even with all variables in mind, these 5 steps can inform your process no matter how the nonsense occurred. How to overcome hurt
1.Take a Day
Whenever I encounter a situation that hurts my feelings or makes me angry, depending upon its severity, sometimes it’s necessary for me to take a 24 hour respite from being a rational human being. Honestly, I allow myself to have an attitude for 1 day. To feel all the feelings no matter how ridiculous they are.
Give yourself space to yell or cry or have those conversations with yourself about what I would say if the offending party were in front of you which you probably wouldn’t say but would just really wanna. Basically, let yourself feel without apologizing for it.
Me and God have some real gangster conversations here – I usually try to tell Him how He should do His job – He listens, because He cares. But also I’m sure He gives me many heavenly eye-rolls. This is not to say that you stop feeling your feelings after 24 hours, it’s just that you don’t give your power away to your feelings after that. In some instances, it may require 48 hours or some such – but the point is to realize that you can’t pitch a tent, build a lil fire and camp out there.
Now, the challenge is, you still have to exist in society as a normal person. After all, it’s not cool to take the attitude you’e decided to have and inflict it on innocent bystanders. If you are unable to spend time alone, still feel all the feelings, but don’t let let too much negativity leak into situations that don’t deserve it. This is a good place to call someone who will just let you word-vomit until you’re finished with no expectation of it making sense. I don’t have no Bible for that – it just helps.
2. Find What’s Real
Ok, now that you’ve had 24 hours to freak out, you gotta get back to adulting. Praying about the situation at every stage is a great idea, but in this stage you are typically more receptive to the truth of the answers you receive. The freak-out stage is filled with assumptions and automatic responses. This stage is sifting through all of that to figure out what’s actually happening.
Did that person say what you thought you heard? Did they truly mean it that way? Did you yell when you could have just asked a clarifying question? Are they telling the truth about the situation and your pride is hurt because they are right? Are they totally wrong and you’re hurt because you don’t feel known or valued? Work to find the root cause of the emotion instead of simply stopping at the emotion itself. Most folks never get to this step.
Here is where you get down to the real deal. This is where you seek God for actual revelation, and you listen. You have to be willing to accept His truth as to how to move forward as His child over your truth which can be clouded by circumstance. This is a good place to call someone who will talk you down “off of the ledge” so-to-speak. Someone who will inject some honesty and help you separate feeling from fact. Which brings us to the next part.
3. Own Your..uh… Stuff
This is the most humbling part of the process, perhaps, but humility is a beautiful gift. It doesn’t always come easy or right away – but it’s crucial. Once you’ve delved into the territory of what’s real, now you do the work of finding out which parts are yours to own, to confront, to change, to fight for, or to let go. A lot of times we are hurt because of our unspoken expectations or assumptions aren’t met – and that doesn’t actually have much to do with anyone else. We have to own that. How to overcome hurt
Sometimes there is just a misunderstanding that we perpetuated. We have to own that.
Sometimes someone really does make an honest mistake and we take it upon ourselves to take it personally. How to overcome hurt
Sometimes it is something that really does need to be addressed and confronted, and we have to own being a part of a solution – not just feeling some type of way about it so we have a license to complain.
Sometimes hurt happens because we’ve not set up honored our own boundaries.
Sometimes hurt happens because there is someone in our life who doesn’t need to be but we are too afraid to let them go and we need to.
This is a good space to call someone who will be honest with you and challenge you to grow. Someone who loves you too much to pacify you and your hurt feelings. After identifying these things, ask God to help you accept what needs accepting and to heal what needs healing.
4.Do the Work
After alla dat, the next step is action. This is where you figure out how to heal, how to do better, think and behave differently, and accept reality. This is where a lot of humility is needed.
It’s where apologies are made when necessary. Sometimes those apologies are to yourself. Now that your emotions aren’t running the show and logic has likely prevailed, you can go to the offending party and articulate your thoughts & experience with grace, patience and kindness. I know….gross.
This, I’ve found, is helpful in my marriage. It is rare that I bring up an offense at the time it happens. Which is not to say that there is never a place for that, but most of the time it’s not actually super crucial to do so. Getting to a helpful solution is much easier when I can say exactly what I mean in a thoughtful way. It’s where I put a plan in place to get to the root of the issue, under all of the feelings and assumptions. How to overcome hurt
In this step, the work may also be rooting out the source of the hurt. Go to God about it. There are some relationships that deserve repair, no matter how difficult. And there are some that do not.
Ask God for your next steps. This is the most freeing step, if you let it be.
5. Let it Go
On the other side of the nonsense, the only way to truly move on is to stop carrying the situation with you. Yes, it may have been a valid hurt or wrong-doing that you experienced – but that doesn’t mean you have to let it dictate your life. You own your feelings, they do not own you. You have to choose to, once you’ve gone through the steps listed above, let the process do it’s work and let God direct it all. The person who hurt you is still God’s son/daughter. He loves them just as much as He loves you – so let Him deal with them – you got other stuff to do. Yes, it may take some time for your emotions to recalibrate, and that’s ok, but actively work to be ok so that the situation isn’t a detriment to the rest of your life & relationships.
Truly letting it go can be a process. And, regardless of what the world says, it does not involve revenge in the traditional sense or “karma.” It involves love – whew – dang-it. That’s a tough one. But it’s how you know the hurt has no power over you.
This is a good space to go live life. Have fun. Try a new hobby. Do the obligatory hair chop/dye job. Shed what was before and press on for what’s new. And seek God in it all along the way. How to overcome hurt
Do you have other tips for how to deal with hurt in a healthy way?