Mending Your Heart
Barbara Duchnowski, ACHt, LCSW
8 Tips for Overcoming Broken Heart Syndrome
BARBARA DUCHNOWSKI LCSW
AUGUST 5, 2021
We have all heard about being broken hearted, but did you know it was a real medical diagnosis? The end of a relationship, whether by death, illness, divorce, separation, abuse can be devastating. Our world as we know it has fallen apart. This is a trauma, and our minds and bodies respond accordingly. So many times we hear “you’ll be fine”, “you’ll meet someone else”, “they are at peace”, “there are plenty of fish in the sea”, and the dreaded “it could have been worse”. What do you mean by worse? Your world has gone upside down. All these things can leave one feeling dismissed, invalidated, and thinking “what’s wrong with me that I am suffering so much?”. I have news for you, your response is normal because what you are feeling is physically real.
Broken Heart Syndrome is a real physical manifestation of the emotional trauma and pain experienced. Those in the counseling and psychotherapy fields can tell you stories about individuals who have suffered debilitating heart conditions and even heart attacks after the end of a significant relationship. Emotional pain can wreak havoc on the mind and body. Research shows that our bodies and minds get in sync with our long-term partners, and when these relationships end, we send ourselves into a serious physical stress response. For example, social rejection, like in the end of a relationship, increases inflammatory markers associated with asthma, arthritis, and depression.
What to do to start to mend that broken heart and not only heal the emotional pain but work on stopping the physical pain? Make yourself the priority! For months, years, maybe decades you may have been putting the needs of others before your needs. Now is the time to care for yourself. Of course, drowning ourselves in a gallon of ice cream sounds like a yummy way to go but our bodies need to now become our temples.
1. Eat healthy foods you enjoy.
2. Practice some form of mindfulness daily.
3. Get outside and enjoy nature. Breath.
4. Get moving and do some exercise daily. At your comfort level.
5. Connect with others who are supportive.
6. Do something you LOVE everyday for at least thirty minutes.
7. Take a nice soak in the bath.
8. Start laughing by watching or reading something that makes the belly hurt (in a good way)!
Life can be like a rollercoaster what goes down usually comes up. It may be hard to see things getting better or yourself being happy again, but happiness is there waiting for you, with some effort. Allow the goodness into your life that you so deserve.
For more information on contacting Barbara please go to MendingYourHeart.com
Barbara Duchnowski, ACHt, MSW, LCSW Barbara Duchnowski is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker with a Masters Degree in Social Work from Rutgers University. Over the past 30 years of experience in the mental health field, Barbara has worked in various clinical, educational, community, and private practice settings as a therapist, counselor, coach, group facilitator, professional development trainer, in addition to, holding leadership roles. Through her work, Barbara recognized a pattern of trauma history in relationship to mental health and behavioral challenges encountered by children, caregivers, families, and adults. Barbara is driven by her passion to help those suffering from trauma recognize they “deserve good” in their lives and provide them with the foundations to work towards healing and living a fulfilling abundant life. In addition to her Masters in Social Work and is certified as an Advanced Clinical Hypnotherapist.
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Experiencing a "Heart Break" in your life that has left you feeling as though someone has "pulled the rug out from underneath you"? You are not alone Maybe leaving you feeling beaten down, emotionally raw, lost, or stuck? Do you wonder "How is this happening to me?" I am here to help you find your way. You deserve good in your life.
Hello! I'm Barbara Duchnowski, Licensed Clinical Social Worker in the Princeton NJ area. As a counseling professional, I strive to make you feel safe, comfortable , and at ease. I strongly believe that to be effective in what I do there has to be a connection and relationship with my clients.