We all go through those dark periods sometimes. You’ve heard about them “The Dark Night of the Soul”  You’ve probably been through them or felt stuck in them.

I have, I’d had a few.  Ideally we grow from them and later when when we can reflect back in them we can find the gifts in them.

But when we a hurt, we regret, we wonder, what if?  Gifts are the furthest thing from our mind.  And that’s how it should be.  We feel angry.  We feel lonely, misunderstood maybe even fearful.  Everything has it’s time and place.

Sometimes we get to the point of actually being able to let it go.

But then what. What if you found a way to release by accident or on purpose either alone or with support?  You let go.  Then what?

Often times, there is an emptiness, a void.  Our heart can feel like it is breaking.

The ickies are gone (or at least a chunk or layer of it).  It feels good and yet exhausting at the same time.  Can you relate?  Have you ever felt that way?

Have you ever faced your demons or your past with honesty and felt raw after?

I’ve been there.  Raw can feel scary, unsettling. Heartbroken can feel devastating.

I had a student at The S.W.A.T. Institute ask about what to do when you’ve let go and are left feeling raw.  I’ve been pondering it since. I’ve reflected back to times I could not let go and times I’ve let go of shit that that did not serve me and what I did after.  What worked, what didn’t work.

Here’s what did not work:

Ignoring the all feelings and ignoring the new feelings of emptiness.

Numbing out and filling the space with some addictive quality, excess eating, drinking, shopping, __________ fill in the blank with your choice of numbing activity.

Jumping straight back into activity and busy-ness.

Telling everyone the story and creating drama about it.

Sharing the “wrong” person:

  • The one you don’t feel safe with.
  • The one that tells you to “suck it up”
  • The one that “one-ups” you with their woes.
  • The one that gives you a list of “woulda, shoulda couldas”


Here’s what did work:

Allow yourself time and space to feel the hollowness, the sadness.

Feel your feelings + grieve it.  Sometimes things just plain suck.  Acknowledge it.

Let yourself cry.

Lick your wounds. Be compassionate and kind with yourself.

Create space and just be. Journal about it.

Talk about what you are experiencing with a trusted source that can listen and see you, not try to fix you or get tangled up in drama.  Just sharing the burden of our hurt or shame can lighten it layers when done in a safe space.

Then proceed with my next favorite step.  It has become many favorite because for so many years I neglected this little gem.

Fill yourself back up.  a.k.a.  – NOURISH YOU.

Be gentle and loving with yourself and do some things that make you feel good.

For me long hot soaks in a hot bath in Epsom salts and coconut oil is relaxing and healing.  When I drain the tub I picture all the stuff I don’t need to carry around anymore spiraling down the drain.  Goodbye.

Go for a long walk.

Read something inspiring.

Buy yourself some flowers.

Spend some quiet time in nature.

Do things that make you feel good about yourself.  Something that makes you smile.  Something that simply makes you feel joyful.

Know that it is okay to cocoon yourself and fill yourself up.

Know that these uncomfortable feelings will pass.

By honoring your feelings and yourself, you will start to feel more energetic again.

That’s the time kick things to up a notch.  Put on some music and dance. Go for a run. Move your body in ways that feels good to you. Make a date with a friend to have some fun.

INNER WISDOM WEDNESDAY TIP: If we don’t fill that void in our heart up with love and tenderness, with things that make us feel alive and whole again, the void will get filled with something else.

We need to be mindful and nourish ourselves in ways that align with how we want to feel. If not we run the risk that the void will fill back up with things we probably don’t want, like drama, despair, bitterness or regret.  These things suck our energy.  We become depleted.

When your heart is breaking, ask yourself:

“How do I want to feel now?  How do I want to feel when this passes?”

Your answers will lead to ways to nourish yourself that will support your well being and help heal your heart in its own time.

Need some support?  Some straight shooting or TLC?  Contact me here, share your heart and let’s connect.  Or Apply for your complimentary Courage Awareness Session here.   It’s a safe space.

Love yourself up.  You are worth it.

Much love,


8 comments to “What to do when Your Heart is Breaking”

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  1. Lanette - Mar 06, 2015 Reply

    Great post! Being authentic allows for positive growth. I especially like your reminders to nourish ourselves. It’s easy to allow other things to edge this time away from us but without it we can’t be our best.

    • Kat

      Kat - Mar 06, 2015 Reply

      Hi Lanette,

      Thanks for your comments. Yes it is much easier to be our best for others when we take care of ourselves first!


  2. Ronnie - Mar 06, 2015 Reply

    I love this post. So true and in my case, timely, every bit of it. I especially liked

    “INNER WISDOM WEDNESDAY TIP: If we don’t fill that void in our heart up with love and tenderness, with things that make us feel alive and whole again, the void will get filled with something else.”

    Two days ago a friend slipped on ice in a parking lot. Last night they took her off life support. So this morning, I am baking cookies for my writers meeting. Everyday is a gift.

    Thanks for this message.

    • Kat

      Kat - Mar 06, 2015 Reply


      Thanks for your feedback. Glad the IWW tip resonates with you.

      So sorry about your friend. That’s tough and heart wrenching. Yes, each day is a gift.


  3. Karyn - Mar 07, 2015 Reply

    Thanks for this post! I always lean into the crying and sad cycle without any judgement of myself. My partner has never understood the need to just open the floodgates and cry my eyes out. However, I end up feeling so relieved by not holding back. Honor your feelings! Thanks!

    • Kat

      Kat - Mar 07, 2015 Reply

      You are welcome Karyn!
      Yes honoring our feelings is so important. Crying can be so purifying, good for you to let it out.

  4. Dina Delicce - Mar 12, 2015 Reply

    Great post. I like the questions you ask at the end … How do you want to feel now? How do you want to feel when this passes?

    I find all too often we have been trained to think “what doesn’t kill me will make me stronger.” Of course I do believe that 100% with all my heart, but that doesn’t mean that some things are simply NOT FUN.

    Pain is difficult to feel, but I find that when I don’t engage in my numbing behaviors then the pain lasts only a little bit. And, then when it passes (and it does) I can enjoy the “strength” that comes from knowing I survived.

    Thanks for the list of nourishing things to do while waiting for the pain to pass.

  5. Kat

    Kat - Mar 19, 2015 Reply

    Thanks for your lovely comments Dina.

    Agreed pain is not fun or always easy to feel, but it is part of the human experience. And yes when we allow ourselves to simply feel it, it does not last as long.

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