5 Super Effective Ways to Survive a Broken Heart

I remember so well my first broken heart. It was 9th grade and Bobby Fortunato, the guy of my dreams, had just broken up with me. We had been going out for two whole weeks. My mom took pity on me and let me stay home in bed and eat jello. I remember it like it was yesterday.

Truly, there might be nothing worse than a broken heart. The pain, both in your heart and in your head, is almost unbearable. The end of a relationship is like a death… you grieve for your loss and you feel a huge emptiness, one that you are sure you will never again be able to fill.

I am here to tell you there are ways to get through your grief not only intact but even better than you were before.

Here are my 5 Super Effective Ways to Survive a Broken Heart.

#1 – Shut down the pain.

Most likely your body is in physical pain, the result of psychological suffering. And the most likely center point of that pain is your stomach. The pain is sharp and relentless and makes you feel like you are going to die.

That pain is from anxiety. Anxiety that you are less than, that you will never love again, that you will be alone, that you are unlovable. That pain comes directly from your brain, from your thoughts. Not so helpful, right?

There are two ways to deal with that pain.

The first: talk back to that brain of yours.

Tell it that it is being ridiculous. That you are amazing, that this loss will only create new opportunities, that you aren’t now, nor ever will you be, alone. It’s not easy but you can do it.

Say those words OUT LOUD. Speaking words out loud, instead of keeping them in our head, releases the words into the world energetically which makes them more powerful. Try it. It’s true.

The second: remember to breathe.

Big deep breaths that go down to your belly. Breathe in for 3 seconds and out for 4. This kind of breathing will actually calm the stress response in your body, ease your stomach pain and help clear your head. Repeat as necessary.

#2 – Manage your media.

This is a key element in grief management. You have music, you have video, you have social media. USE THEM FOR GOOD. They will get you out of your head and inspire you to be powerful.

I make a playlist when I am going through hard times. The songs are about empowerment, about survival, about living life fully. They go on my I-phone and then get played in my car as I go about my day. And yes, I sing along. Loudly.

Movies work the same way. There are so many movies out there about overcoming the odds, getting through hard times and emerging better than before. Find them. Watch them. Be inspired by them. Even cry with them (yes, crying is okay. even good. sometimes great. but don’t wallow).

Be careful with social media. Yes, it is a great tool for feeling connected and distracted but if you have a tendency to stalk, and it causes you pain, then tread lightly. YouTube might be better than Facebook…or so my teenage daughter tells me.

#3 – Do Good.

Nothing feels better than helping out someone in need. Helping out someone else while you are at your lowest feels even better, believe it or not.

When you are grieving it is really easy to turn inside yourself, to feel like you are in the worst place a person could be. And while where you are does suck, there are others out there who are as just as bad off or worse. And by helping them you are also helping yourself.

There are plenty of ways to help out. You can help an elderly neighbor mow their lawn, you can volunteer at a library and help children learn to read. Hospitals are always in need of people to help in a variety of capacities. I worked in palliative care for a while. Boy, did that give me some perspective and appreciation of the life I was living.

Pick one. Do it. See how good it makes you feel and make someone else feel better in the process.

Want to talk more about fixing your broken heart? Let’s do it!

#4 – Get hot.

Yes, you read that right. Get hot.

Exercise is one of the best ways to manage grief. During exercise your body produces endorphins and endorphins actually make you feel better. And, as a side benefit, exercise also gets you in shape.

Imagine having the body that you have always wanted – you know what body I am talking about. Now is the time to get it. Start exercising to help manage your grief and use it to get in great shape and to feel better about yourself.

And, while it’s not about revenge, let your ex eat his heart out when next he sees you!

#5 – Don’t stop believing in love.

Yes, right now your heart is broken. You just can’t imagine being able to get through this day or the next. You know that you will never love or be loved again. Sigh.

No! You have to believe. You have to believe that your great love is out there. That you are more than a little loveable and that what you are going through is only temporary. Think about what you want and work on truly believing that you will get it. And then take the steps to do so. You can do it!

And, if you are feeling hot and full of self confidence from all that exercise and surviving your grief, imagine what that special someone will think when they first lay eyes on you. WOW!

Now that’s a great place for your pesky brain to go, don’t you think?

So there you go… my 5 Super Effective Ways to Survive a Broken Heart.

Your world seems like it is over but it’s not. Use my coping techniques and not only will you get through today and tomorrow in one piece but you will build the strength of body and character that will ultimately help you achieve your dreams and find the love of your life.

Mitzi Bockmann is a NYC based Certified Life Coach and mental health advocate. Her writing has been published in The Huffington PostPrevention MagazineThe Good Man Projectamong others. She works exclusively with women to help them to be all that they want to be in this crazy world in which we live.

Looking for more ways to finding happiness? Contact me NOW and I can help!

5 Questions to Ask Yourself If You are Unhappy

Being unhappy is horrible. It can take over your life and suck all that is good and joyful out of it. None of us want to be unhappy but many of us are.

One thing many of us don’t ask ourselves is why we are unhappy. We have a vague understanding that our lives are not what we hoped they would be but we don’t know specifically why.

In an effort to help you identify what specifically is making you unhappy I have five questions for you. Answer them in terms of your own life and you will get the answers you are looking for.

Here is my latest: 5 Questions to Ask Yourself If You are Unhappy.

#1 – Are you proud of the choices you are making?

All of us having internal guiding principles that are important to us, things like the importance of trust or honesty or loyalty. These guiding principles light our path to living our best life but unfortunately they can get lost as life happens.

Do you know what your guiding principles are and are your living them?

I have a client who was having an affair with a married man. He made her deliriously happy, or so she told herself. But still she didn’t feel good about her life and she didn’t know why.

I asked her what her guiding principles were – what was most important to her in a relationship?

After some thought and discussion she realized that the truth was of paramount importance to her. And that nothing about her relationship with the married man was based on truth.

“Are you able to live with that?” I asked. “And be happy?”

The answer was no and she soon moved on. On into a relationship that was based on truth and trust and she is happy.

#2 – Is your relationship making your heart sing?

Our romantic relationships are very important, more important than many of us recognize.

In this modern world we are told that we should be able to take care of ourselves and that to rely on another to bring us some happiness is a sign of weakness.

But this just simply is not true.

Happy committed relationships provide much that is essential to human survival: commitment, communication, touch, sharing, sex, support, laughter, joy, sex. When we have those things our lives are fuller, we are satisfied, we are loved. Other things can bring us down but the foundation of a good relationship helps us when we founder.

Being in a relationship isn’t necessary for happiness but being in a relationship that is toxic puts you on the surest path to being unhappy.

I have a client whose husband was always one of two things: absent or drunk. She wasn’t sure which was worse – his not being in the house or being drunk when he was. What she did know was that it was making her miserable. She was always hoping that things would change but they never did. She was alone in her marriage.

And the rest of her life? It foundered. Her parenting suffered, she stopped eating well and exercising and gained 20 pounds, her work was neglected and her crabbiness made her friends stay away.

What did she do? After much deliberation and overcoming lots of fear, she asked him to stay absent and she is fighting her way back to herself, on the path to living the life of her dreams.

#3 – Do you make a difference in the world?

I know you are going to say that you just don’t have time to volunteer. How could I possibly ask you to do that?

I am not going to ask you to do that. Although if it appeals you should try it. Volunteering makes the world go round.

What I mean by making a difference is asking you how you interact with others in the world. Did you smile at the checkout person at the grocery store? Do you hold doors for other people? Do you refrain from giving the man who cut you off in his BMW the finger? Do you pick up trash that you see in the street?

All of these things contribute to the world in a small way and doing them will make your life a better place as well. The act of smiling at someone will actually make you and the person you smiled at happier. Holding doors for people makes them feel noticed and you made it happen. Not giving someone the finger will allow you not to feel the pain of remorse in the middle of the night. And picking up that trash will literally make the world a more beautiful place.

So make a difference in the world every day. It will make you happier. I promise.

Want some help being happy? Let me help!

#4 – Do you feel healthy and strong?

You know when you go out on a long dock and it’s old and creaky and with each step you wonder if you are going to end up in the water? If you aren’t healthy and strong, like a good dock, you could find yourself drowning before you know it.

Taking care of yourself is the key to a foundation from which happiness can grow. Eat well, but don’t deprive yourself. Exercise, but only so it makes you feel good. Do one thing that makes you happy every day, like a massage or lunch with a friend. Find a life coach, to get the support that you need.

If you feel healthy and strong you will be able to take on whatever life throws at you.

Wouldn’t that feel great?

#5 – Do you challenge yourself?

I know that I have my routines. I get up, walk my dog, do some yoga, work all day, walk my dog again, do errands, have dinner, take a bath and go to bed. Pretty much every day.

As a life coach I know that while routines are good for keeping us on track it is essential to challenge ourselves. Challenging yourself will keep your brain going strong, keep you physically confident and get that adrenaline rushing.

What do I mean by being challenged? It can be anything.

When I got divorced I promised myself that I would start doing all of the things that scared me. I learned how to ride a jet ski (which was awesome), I conquered my fear of driving in the snow (which was convenient), I took up crossword puzzles (which has made me way smarter) and I can now use power tools. Except for a drill.

It’s so hard to imagine now not being able to do those things. Doing them has given me so much more confidence in myself – not only that I can do them but that I challenged myself to overcome my fears and prevailed.

And did I mention that I was way smarter? That makes me happy.

So there you go. 5 Questions to Ask Yourself if You Are Unhappy.

Unhappiness to so many of us is the status quo. We assume that this is the way life is and we must push through it. But it doesn’t have to be this way. Happiness IS possible.

Are you making choices that are feeling good? Are you feeling loved and supported in your relationship? Did you make someone smile today? Is your foundation strong? Did you do something recently that got your adrenaline pumping?

If not, choose one and make it happen.

Happiness is yours for the taking. Today.

Mitzi Bockmann is a NYC based Certified Life Coach and mental health advocate. Her writing has been published in The Huffington PostPrevention MagazineThe Good Man Projectamong others. She works exclusively with women to help them to be all that they want to be in this crazy world in which we live.

Looking for more ways to finding happiness? Contact me NOW and I can help!

5 Ways to Be More Productive and CHANGE YOUR LIFE

Lack of productivity can be very destructive. It can lead to overwhelm, which can be paralyzing, and it can be very demoralizing, which can lead to low self-esteem.

Neither of those things help you live the life of your dreams.

There are a myriad of reasons why my clients seek me out to be their life coach but most often a piece of it is that they need some help with productivity. I am happy to report that without exception those clients who were willing to take on their low productivity reported a dramatic change after just a few weeks of working with me.

Today I am going to share with you the work that I have done with my clients so you can learn about being more productive.

Here is my latest: 5 Ways to Be More Productive and CHANGE YOUR LIFE.

#1 – Identify what it is you want. Precisely.

Many of my clients come to me with an idea of what they want from their life. A new job, a better marriage, improved relations with co-workers, how to move forward in a different way. What many of those clients haven’t done is identify what exactly it is they want. Without that knowledge moving forward is impossible.

I have a client who came to me because she was miserable in her job of 15 years but she just didn’t know what to do. She had tried to make adjustments at work so that she could be happier but to no avail. She was stuck with what to do next. Paralyzed in fact.

I asked her where she would go if she left her job. She had no idea. She knew that she wanted out but she had given no thought to where she would like to jump. And, I asked, how would you get to that new place. Again, my question was met with silence.

The next part was quick and easy. We brainstormed new career paths, ideas that made her heart sing. We then cleaned up her resume to reflect that new job she sought. Next she researched job opportunities and applied for those jobs. Within a few weeks she had some interviews and soon after found the job of her dreams.

All this because she identified precisely where she wanted to go. Without concrete information you are stuck. She was. And then she wasn’t.

#2 – Set goals.

Once you know what it is you want to do it’s time to set goals.

I have a client who had created a website and she had been working on it’s blog for almost a year. She had been tweaking and re-tweaking and then walking away, bored and frustrated, only to eventually come back and tweak it some more.

I asked her how determined she was to get this blog onto her site. Scale of 1-10. 10 she said. So we set a date. A date one month later. She put it on her calendar.

One month later, after years in process, after having set goals with me and making a plan, her blog was up.

Was she proud? Did her self-esteem go through the roof? Yes and yes. Awesome!

#3 – Make a plan.

Having a plan is an essential part of being productive. Without a plan you are stabbing about in the dark.

I have a client who HATED going to the grocery store. HATED it. So she didn’t. As a result she didn’t eat well and always felt weak.

I asked her why she hated the grocery store. She said the noise and the lights were annoying, things were hard to find, she never had time to find recipes of things to make, and she didn’t want to spend the money. All valid reasons.

So we made a plan. First we skipped the recipes. I had her make a list of things that she knew how to cook and of things she liked to eat. She made a list using those things as a basis and I helped her organize her list into groups that related to areas in the grocery store. We made a plan of when she could go, at times when it was less crowded. She also decided to wear her headphones so the noise was less daunting.

Last, but not least, we set a specific date and time. And when she was done shopping she had to call me. And you know what? She did it. She has food. She feels better. And she did it again the next week.

#4 – Have a great calendar and use it wisely.

I had a client who had the most lofty goals but she didn’t believe herself capable of following through on anything. As a result nothing ever got done.

Here is what we did. Every Sunday night we made a calendar for her for the week. On it, in red, were the things that she HAD to do. Doctor’s appointments, driving to soccer, her half hour walk, 1 hour of writing. And then, in green, were the things that she wanted to get done. Balancing her checkbook, cleaning out closets, making some phone calls. She added things in black as things popped up during the week.

Those items in red were non-negotiable. If an emergency came up and she wasn’t able do a red item then she had to immediately reschedule it for another day that week. It wasn’t allowed to fall through the cracks.

The green items were treated the same but they could be moved to the next week if necessary.

The black were things that tended to get done because they were last minute and she was able to get them done because that’s how she thrived, with a time limit.

She knew I would be checking up on her so she stuck to it as agreed.

It took a few weeks but using her calendar really allowed my client to be as productive as she had always hoped to be. And being so productive ramped up her self-esteem in a big way. She realized that she wanted to keep doing this, on her own, because she liked how she felt and she didn’t want to let herself down. So she did. I was proud.

#5 – Find someone to hold you accountable.

This is a big part of my role as a life coach. We all need accountability. Someone to encourage us to get things done and to help us figure out why when we don’t.

I know you have your friends and your family and your co-workers to support you but more often than not those people will lean towards supporting you, to listening to your rationalizations and letting you off the hook.

Not me.

I know the importance of staying on track, both for productivity’s sake and for building self-esteem. Productivity is important for its own sake – things need to get done. Period.

Another reason productivity is so important is because of it’s effect on your self-esteem. My clients are always so hard on themselves because they can never get things done, they are so far behind, they let other people down. Not doing these things can boost one’s self-esteem significantly. And having higher self-esteem makes one more prone to being productive. See how that works?

It’s a win-win in so many ways.

So there you go, my 5 Ways to be More Productive and CHANGE YOUR LIFE.

Our lives are crazy, jam packed and exhausting. Not being productive can cause overwhelm, and overwhelm can lead you down a path that makes it all worse.

It doesn’t have to be this way. There are ways to be productive and make one’s life a little less exhausting. As you can see above, my clients prove that it can be done.

You can do it too!

Need more tips on being more productive? Contact me and I can help.

Mitzi Bockmann is a NYC based Certified Life Coach and mental health advocate. Her writing has been published in The Huffington PostPrevention MagazineThe Good Man Projectamong others. She works exclusively with women to help them to be all that they want to be in this crazy world in which we live.

Looking for more ways to finding happiness? Contact me NOW and I can help!

5 Things You Can Do Every Day to Make the World a Better Place

I would say that, right now, worldwide, people are wishing the world were a better place. War, famine, politics and extreme weather are making the world an increasingly difficult place in which to live.

And I am guessing that most people would like to change our world, if they could, but feel helpless in the face of it all.

Fortunately, there are ways that every person can make a difference in the world.  Every day.

Here is my latest… 5 Things You Can Do Every Day to Make the World a Better Place.

#1 – Be kind.

You know when you are having a really bad day and that person in the elevator gives you a smile and says good morning? How does that feel? Great, right?

How about that time the person in front of you at the grocery store was a few dollars short and you offered to pay. Remember the look of gratitude she gave you and how good you felt? Amazing, right?

Imagine if every person in the world did one kind thing every day. The wonderful thing about acts of kindness is that they make everyone feel good. And people who feel good do kind things to other people.

Paying it forward and making the world better, one kindness at a time.

#2 – Don’t litter. Or idle.

I used to live on a dirt country road. It was a road through the woods, lined with a cemetery and dotted with houses. Every morning someone drove down our country road and threw his ripped up lottery tickets and his strawberry milk bottle out of his car window.

Dumping trash has a huge environmental consequence. The dyes from the trash are absorbed by the soil. That toxic soil damages the trees and plants that animals and birds feed from. Drains get clogged, which can cause flooding. Waterways get polluted and kill plant and fish life.

All because of some lottery tickets and strawberry milk.

Last week I was waiting in line to get on a car ferry and almost every single person in that line sat with their car idling. The amount of carbon emissions being released into our atmosphere so that people could stay cool in their air-conditioned cars was staggering.

And at that moment millions of cars around the world were releasing their own emissions, further depleting our ozone layer and causing the scary weather systems that are slowly destroying our planet.

Imagine the positive effect if even half of us turned off our cars while waiting. It would certainly slow the ozone layer depletion, even if only just a bit.

So be aware of how your everyday habits affect our environment. You can literally make the world a better place with just a little awareness.

#3 – Don’t judge.

You know that person who pissed you off today. The one who interrupted a meeting or spilled coffee on you or who was brusque on the phone? Yes, that person.

And how did you react to that person? Did you think What a bitch. Or What a jerk.

It’s important that we NOT judge people because of their actions. You just don’t know what has happened to that person that has made them behave that way.

Perhaps that person who interrupted the meeting had to run home to care for a sick child. Or that person who spilled coffee hadn’t slept well the night before because she was up late worrying about how to pay her taxes.

People are trying to do their best. Life is hard. Cut people some slack and believe that if they could do it differently they would.

#4 – Be helpful.

One of the striking things about living in NYC is how often you see people struggling and how, more often than not, no one reaches out to help. Not maliciously but because people in NYC keep their heads down and mind their own business.

And then you see moments of pure selflessness.

Last week I saw a woman who, when crossing the street, noticed a homeless man behind her, shuffling along. She knew he wouldn’t make it across before the light turned red so she stopped and waved her arms at approaching vehicles. Because she did, cars slowed and the man made it across in one piece.

The homeless man was thankful and I saw passersby take notice of what she had done. I am willing to bet that those passersby did something nice for someone else that night, inspired by what they had seen.

Paying it forward and making the world a better place. Again.

#5 – Put down your phone.

There are so many reasons why putting down your phone will make the world a better place.

If you put down your phone you can stop filling your brain with images of politicians doing stupid things, of violent happenings world wide and people writing nasty things about each other. This will make you happier and more inclined to do one of the recommendations above.

If you put down your phone you might look up and see the moon or an act of kindness or the person you love. You might even see an opportunity that could change your life or make the world a better place.

Put down your phone. Engage in life. Pay attention. Make a difference.

So there you go: my 5 Things You Can Do Every Day to Make the World a Better Place.

The world we live in is a difficult one. Every day we are faced with issues that suck us dry, individually and collectively. It doesn’t have to be that way.

Make small changes to the ways you interact in the world and, together, we can make the world a better place.

Looking for more ways to change the world? Contact me and I can help.

Mitzi Bockmann is a NYC based Certified Life Coach and mental health advocate. Her writing has been published in The Huffington PostPrevention MagazineThe Good Man Projectamong others. She works exclusively with women to help them to be all that they want to be in this crazy world in which we live.

Looking for more ways to finding happiness? Contact me NOW and I can help!