3 Words To Keep In Mind After A Breakup

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Different people have different reactions to getting dumped. Some retreat into themselves and need to be alone, others act unaffected and throw themselves into all things social. No matter the initial reaction, at the heart of it all is the universal sting you can’t help but feel when experiencing rejection from someone you cared about.

This rejection sparks a distinct emotional pain, but Dr. Phil McGraw once offered an “Oprah Show” audience some timeless advice that can help anyone going through a breakup. As he said back then, remembering three little words can make a big difference in helping you move on.

Don’t personalize rejection,” Dr. Phil says. “People get rejected and they say, ‘Well, that means there must be something wrong with me.’ It doesn’t mean any such a thing!”

Instead, he continues, the issue is likely something rooted within your ex, something far beyond your control.

“Oftentimes, the flaw is in the other person,” Dr. Phil says. “You hear about people with an inability to commit, or they’ve just got immaturity, or they’ve got other fish to fry in their life and it’s just not the right time… Haven’t you been with people that were just wonderful, but they just weren’t right with you?”

If you’re unable to stop personalizing rejection, it can spill over into your future relationships in a very negative way. “You’re dragging all that baggage with you. You gotta get past that,” Dr. Phil says. “Don’t make them pay for sins — real or imagined — that [a past partner] committed… Start fresh. Give yourself a break.”

More advice from Dr. Phil: How to keep away from your ex — for good.

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Faith Nouri is licensed to practice law in both the U.S. and Canadian Federal Courts. Ms. Nouri is an attorney at law in California, and a Barrister & Solicitor in British Columbia, Canada.