Throughout Heal Your Broken Heart you are asked to let go of old thinking, historical problematic patterns about love, and eventually your ex. Phase upon phase you are presented with a variety of releasing requests each from a different perspective. The reason to let go of everything that isn’t working for you is so that you will be able to move forward. If you don’t let go you’ll remain stuck in your pain and not heal, which is definitely not what you’re working towards.
Letting go of everything that I ask you to is not always easy. Sometimes it can seem that holding onto something, even if it’s hurting you, is better than feeling you have nothing at all. You want to heal but you may also want to cling to the story of your breakup and the definition you now have of your ex. Letting go of your ex, along with any emotions that are binding you to him/her, is what will free you and heal you. This can’t be forced. It’s more than a matter of simply wanting to let go. You have to be ready. The book prepares you for each of the progressively challenging releases, so know that you will be en pointe as each one arrives.
One of the best results of letting go is that you discover how good it feels to do it. It might be hard to imagine that you could actually experience feeling good in the midst of hurting from your broken heart, but it does happen.
Having your heart broken can feel like everything around you suddenly freezes. It’s like being encased in a massive glacier in a matter of seconds. The healing process breaks that glacier into smaller more manageable pieces that begin to move away from you and dissolve, diminishing and eventually removing your pain. The Heal Your Broken Heart releases are a major part of the healing process that in the end will return your heart to you.
I love when people personalize their experience with Heal Your Broken Heart by expanding the exercises that especially resonate with them. Often that expansion happens by spending more time thinking and writing about an exercise. Other times something quite surprising can happen.
Sean had the surprising version happen when he was working on QA 4, which many of you know is a wonderfully informative exercise in its standard format. Sean, who has not thought of himself as a visual artist, was moved to create a visual representation of the seven emotions he chose to work on. He was kind enough to send those pictures to me and I thought you would enjoy seeing them.
This doesn’t suggest that you need to do drawings of your QA 4 emotions, but it is good to know that you can expand anything in the book that you would like to in any way that suits you.
As a result of this experience I think Sean is rethinking his abilities as a visual artist. You may also discover as Sean has that self-discovery goes hand in hand with healing your broken heart.
Sean picked these seven QA 4 emotions to delve into: fear, unwanted, shame, rage, needy, abandoned and loneliness. To begin, his piece on fear is done on three separate sheets of paper followed by a photo of the complete piece.
And the full piece:
Next is his powerful piece on feeling unwanted.
Sean’s piece on shame:
And to end, loneliness:
Like the Heart Drawings you’re making, these pieces give us a glimpse into what these seven emotions feel like to another person. Often color, texture and shape have the ability to express what words fail to. I know you thank Sean as I do for sharing these extraordinary pieces with us.
What would you like to share from your work with Heal Your Broken Heart?
Three of the drawing/painting/collaging exercises in the book are about the state of your heart at the moment you create those individual pictures, but this first visual exercise asks you to reach back into your past.
Creating a visual representation of all the broken hearts you’ve had, and naming the person associated with each of them, helps you see that your collective of broken hearts have a relationship to your current broken heart.
The adage, a picture speaks a thousand words, is definitely at work here. Seeing our broken hearts drawn on a piece of paper, no matter their number, can hit home in a way that words don’t. When it comes to healing we often need to awaken sleeping parts of us so we can begin to understand the full scope of our healing. It’s not just what we feel in the moment that is asking to be healed, but also what we have brought forward from historical experiences.
The hearts you draw in this exercise represent the amount of heart pain you have sustained and it is fair to assume some of the old pain still needs healing. Elements of that healing will happen naturally as you heal from your current broken heart, and the rest you can come back and heal later.
Having a broken heart strips us of our will, our energy, sometimes even our sense of purpose. We are working to reestablish all three for you and this first drawing makes an important contribution to that healing.
Writing the story of your relationship, and especially the specifics of your breakup, is something most people resist doing. And that makes sense. We already go over enough of the facts in our head and may wonder what benefit will be gained from writing it all down.
You’ll have to trust me that there are ample benefits in doing this exercise, and you’ll see once you complete it that writing out your story begins a releasing process. So that’s good.
Also, there may be specific elements from the relationship that you’ve forgotten and they will often come into focus when you describe everything you can remember about your relationship.
Information from this exercise will resurface throughout the rest of the book so taking the time to write this story as fully as possible will aid in your healing. It probably won’t feel good to do this right now, but this is precisely the right time to take on this exercise.
It may take you several days to get everything down—take your time, there’s no need to rush.
Not everyone has the same reaction to formally writing the name of the person who broke their heart. For some of us it’s fairly easy to do, for others forming each letter of the name feels painful. No matter how it felt to you, that you completed the statement is what will allow you to continue healing.
The person who broke your heart may not have set out to do so, but that he or she did is an important truth to absorb. It can be easy to make excuses for why someone we love hurt us so badly, and there are often extenuating circumstances in relationships that contribute to their collapse. But while those circumstances might help explain why your ex ended up doing what he/she did, they don’t change the fact that your heart has been broken by the person you were in a relationship with.
As the book says, this is not about placing blame, but rather about stating a fact. When our heart has been broken the first thing that can fall away are the simplest of facts. We replace them with either fictional notions, wished for alternatives, or self-blame—none of which move us forward. And moving forward is what this entire process is about.