After a recent heartbreak, I took this picture. Look at it closely. In my eyes you can see the loss, the pain, and emptiness. I recovered from that heartbreak as I’d done from many others: a little bit wiser, a lot stronger, and definitely less trusting.
I’ve experienced the loss of love many times. It started with my dad and never quite shifted form. I guess that’s what happens when you allow childhood wounds to define your concept of “love.” I’m working on that…
Until recently, I thought love was THE thing… not “a” thing or “some thing” but THE thing… the defining moment, the required experience, the ultimate accomplishment… and then love left again…
And, since then, I’ve had to ask myself, “When love leaves, what’s left of me?” As much as I’ve read the books, attended the workshops and devoured the subject, it’s a question that hit me in the gut as I cried myself to sleep.
And here’s the answer that came:
“Everyone falls in love sometimes
Sometimes it’s wrong, and sometimes it’s right
For every win, someone must fail
But there comes a point when
When we exhale” – Whitney Houston, Exhale
The lyrics from a song of one of my favorite movies, a movie that inspired me to write my first screenplay, rediscover my love of acting and, eventually, leave the marriage that was draining the life out of me. So many monumental moments from one song… and here it was again to teach me the things I didn’t want to learn…
So the question becomes: when your heart breaks and you’ve still got a business to run, how do you transform the feelings of grief, loss, pain, and loneliness into something that fuels the empire you’re building?
Here’s the answer…
You embrace the 5 gifts of heartbreak and you apply them to your business.
Gift #1- Surrender
Heartbreak breaks you open. It forces you to let go of things that you don’t want to let go of, to face emotions you don’t want to face, to simplify life in a way that’s not about what you HAVE to have but becomes about what you long to create. You go from being someone anxious to succeed to being someone who simply wants to take a deep breath and feel at peace. When your heart breaks, you accept the fact that very few things go according to plan and you begin, once again, to go with the flow… and that’s when magic starts to happen in your business. No longer confined to goals, plans, strategies, and revenue models, you now operate from a softer, more intuitive place and your business begins to succeed in a different way, not because you’re not as driven but because you understand that it’s trust in yourself that drives your business, not in any plan or strategy you come up with. Nothing teaches you that better than heartbreak.
Gift #2- Freedom
In relationships, we do all kinds of things we NEVER do outside of them. We accept things we shouldn’t accept. We tolerate things we shouldn’t tolerate. We go silent when it’s time to speak and talk about things we don’t agree with. We compromise and accept and prove all because we don’t want love to leave… never fully getting that the second we lost ourselves, love was out the door anyway. When heartbreak comes, the freedom to be who you REALLY are returns… and now you can go into your business full throttle because the REAL you is finally back in the building. While there are moments where loneliness creeps in, what really shows up with this freedom is an understanding you refused to see when in the relationship: you NEVER have to be someone else for someone who really loves you. Your newfound freedom gives you full opportunity for you to love YOU… and that’s when the business starts to pick up speed.
Gift #3- Purpose
It’s so easy to get your value and purpose from a relationship. When your heart gets broken, you can no longer define yourself by being with someone else. You can no longer live your life based on an “us” or a “we.” That’s gone now. In the wake of that loss, you now have to look yourself in the eyes and say, “What is MY purpose? What am I really about? Who am I meant to be?” Those questions can get easily cast aside in a relationship. Far too often, especially as women, we give up the “I” for the “we” and while that’s noble and glorious and, in some cases, necessary, there’s a lot to lose when you no longer recall who you are or what you want or what God put you here to do. When heartbreak happens, you finally have enough space and distance to ask and answer the question, “Who did I come here to serve?” and, with full faith and freedom, you now have the extraordinary opportunity and time to serve them. Purpose, in many instances, is born of heartbreak. Especially in business, if you can nail down your purpose, you can prosper your business.
Gift #4- Focus
Now that you’re not catering to another person, now that you’re not doing the “How should we… what should we… could we…” compromising thing, you are free to focus completely and totally on the desiring, creating, and offering components that come with running a business. Not only is it freeing but it’s exciting to be able to give everything you’ve got to your business without the worry of who you need to consider or factor into the equation. After a heartbreak, you get to put all of your focus into building YOUR empire. All those times you wished you’d spent more time on your business? All those moments you said to yourself, “Geez, I really have to get focused and create that product!”? Guess what? You now have all the time you need to focus and deliver. Cherish the gift you’ve been given by using it…
Gift #5- Hope
Heartbreak is a beautiful message of hope when you really understand what it’s saying. When your heart breaks, it’s life’s way of saying to you “There’s more for you and it’s not here. Keep looking and you’ll find it… There are gifts for you in this and you can have them right now. Embrace it… You were built to experience greater things than what you did in this relationship. Own the fact that you deserve MORE…” and, then, the moment you begin to own your worth and your value and the fact that you deserve MORE, you start to live that way inside AND outside of your business.
You stop settling for clients you don’t want and projects you hate to have to work on and tasks in your business that you should’ve outsourced to a virtual assistant YEARS ago. You stop doing what doesn’t work for you. You stop accepting less than you deserve and your business starts to grow in new and exciting ways… because you are growing in new and exciting ways. It’s an evolution that could not have occurred as fast or as completely without the heartbreak. You needed the pain to get the point. Hope helps you understand that EVERYTHING happens FOR you, not to you. It is your choice to grow and flourish… and hope helps you choose growth…
The 5 gifts of heartbreak have the power to build your business to heights you cannot imagine. When heartbreak happens to you, don’t turn away from it or make excuses about it or get angry because it’s happening again. Embrace the experience. Learn from the process. Feel your way to healing and, as you do all of that, continue to put your passion, purpose and desire into every business activity you do.
Your business does not need a break because you had a breakup. In fact, it is right after a breakup that your business requires MORE of you, the REAL you that is now showing up because you’ve been broken open, broken free, and broken to the point of restoration. Give yourself the room and the space to fully show up in your business and, more importantly, to fully show up for YOU.
That was the point of the heartbreak. It is your gift AND your lesson. Accept them both…
If you need help dealing with fears that get and keep you stuck, if you’re ready to go from fear to power, sign up for my Fear to Power course. It will transform your fear, reveal your courage, and skyrocket your business.