Relationships 101:
How to Repair a Broken Heart

by Bonnie Burton

So you're suffering from a broken heart. Don't worry, you're not alone. A lot of people fall into relationships that probably weren't meant to be. So what's a sad kid like you expected to do to get over a wounded heart?

Here are a few ideas for things you can do to help yourself heal. They will not only keep you distracted, but they'll inspire you, teach you new skills and help you remember that there's a whole big world out there for you to conquer. Mostly, they'll remind you what a rockin' lady you are whether you're in a relationship or not.

  1. Start a journal. This will help you sort out your thoughts and feelings.

  2. Make a pinata of his/her likeness, fill it full of candy, then beat it with a wiffle bat. Sure it's kinda violent, but you're not hurting anyone plus you get candy for your efforts.

  3. Write a will and leave him/her out of it. Feel smug in knowing that he/she will never get your prized "Dawson's Creek" trading cards.

  4. Pick up that guitar, keyboard, ukulele, bongos, whatever - and sing your little broken heart out.

  5. Don't drive past his or her house over and over again. You don't want a restraining order on your record do you? Stalking is never the answer.

  6. On that same note, do not call his or her phone number and then hang up when someone answers. It's creepy, childish and silly. You have better things to do with your time. Remember the best contact is NO contact.

  7. Don't send your younger siblings or your friends out to spy on him or her. If you've been replaced, you don't want to know about it.

  8. Distract yourself by doing something you've never done before every day. This could mean walking the neighbor's dog or playing Scrabble with your mom.

  9. Start a band. Practice in the garage.

  10. Publish your own 'zine. Get pals to help you out, or do it yourself.

  11. Design your own T-shirts.

  12. Create your own Web site.

  13. Bake headless gingerbread men, then eat them.

  14. Cook your folks dinner for once -- something more complicated than mac and cheese.

  15. Throw an old-fashioned slumber party complete with junk food and nail-painting with your best gal pals. If you're not into nail polish -- try a football match.

  16. Play catch with the family dog until he's the one who's tired for a change.

  17. Sign up for karate lessons.

  18. Enter yourself in a poetry open mic night at a local coffeehouse.

  19. Take your mom out to tea and let her know what you've been up to.

  20. Dye your hair a funky temporary color.

  21. Eat all the foods he or she never liked, unless of course you don't like them either. There's no sense in you eating a bowl of lima beans if you think they're icky as well.

  22. Write a list of all the things that bugged you about him or her, and post it by your mirror. Decorate it with dried macaroni and glitter. Laugh when you look at it.

  23. Watch cartoons all weekend. Write poems about your favorite show.

  24. Rent the best break-up movie ever made: Better Off Dead, starring John Cusack.

  25. Resist the urge to sit in your room in the dark while listening to "your song." Find a new song makes you happy and listen to that instead.

  26. Tune into the local college radio station. Write down all the band names you like but don't recognize and go research them online. You might end up with a new favorite group.

  27. Treat yourself to a shopping spree at the art supply store. Make a present for your best pal.

  28. Write a letter to a distant cousin.

  29. Plant some flowers in the yard, or in a pot for your windowsill.

  30. Learn sign language.

  31. Read a book by the Dalai Lama.

  32. Challenge your dad to a crossword-puzzle race.

  33. Read the newspaper all the way through. Chat with your folks about current events over dinner.

  34. Learn a card trick and then impress your friends with your new magic skills.

  35. Make your own rubber stamps and dabble in mail art.

  36. Do random searches for weird things on eBay. Laugh aloud at the velvet paintings that are for sale.

  37. Try meditating. Master a yoga position.

  38. Hang tiki lights in your bedroom, put on a grass skirt and play Hawaiian music in your room. Hula dance until your sides hurt.

  39. Learn to spin records. Give yourself a cool DJ nickname.

  40. Listen to Indie girl bands like Sleater-Kinney, Dressy Bessy and Tuscadero.

  41. Learn a new skateboard trick.

  42. Have a garage sale and sell all of the presents he/she gave you during your relationship.

  43. Go to the zoo. The monkeys might remind you of him/her which in the end helps drive the point home why it's best you're not still a couple.

  44. Volunteer for your favorite cause. There are bigger things out there than you or I.

  45. Go to the park and cartwheel down a hill. Make sure no one is having a picnic in your cartwheelin' path.

  46. Offer to make a family or friend scrapbook. Get everyone involved.

  47. Move the furniture around in your room. Redecorate your space. You might just need a fresh look on things to cheer you up.

  48. Go on adventure by yourself: go to the zoo, a movie, or to the beach. It's good to remember how to hang out just with yourself.

Return to Archive