Learning to Love Yourself After a Toxic Relationship

No matter how bad a relationship may be, you stay because you love that person so much and would do anything you can to fix it. Sometimes, it can’t be fixed and toxic relationships lead to messy breakups. When you have been in something like this for so long, you may feel lost and alone, vulnerable, and you may feel unworthy of being loved by another person, but most importantly, yourself.

One of the most important lessons I have learned from past experiences is that it is not worth losing yourself trying to love somebody else. It isn’t worth feeling like you aren’t good enough because you let somebody make you feel less than what you are. Toxic relationships can be hard to escape – you don’t want to lose that person you love so much. You constantly hang onto the good times, even though the bad times most definitely outweigh those good times. After the end of a relationship, it may be tempting to want to escape the world around you. Sitting in bed, crying while eating ice-cream and watching Netflix seems so much more appealing than wanting to get up and go do something good for yourself. Sure, it may feel like you’re helping yourself, but are you loving yourself? Many of us forget what self-love is, especially after the end of a relationship that made you lose and stop truly loving yourself. I’ve found that these tips have truly helped me along my self-love journey. 


Motivational Quotes

No matter what day or time it is, I’m always in the mood for a motivational quote. When you’re feeling down about yourself or going through a tough break-up, motivational quotes are one way to make yourself feel better. They help you feel strong, empowered, and motivated to be the best version of yourself that you can be; they’re always a great pick-me-up when you need it the most. Recently, I downloaded the app “Motivation”. You can scroll through the different quotes that they have or you can set daily reminders for the app to send you a quote. When you’re feeling lost after a break-up, I feel that motivational or inspirational quotes can help you through those times. If you’re going through a tough break-up or are dealing with a toxic relationship, these quotes will most definitely make you feel better:

“Relax. Let every moment be what it’s going to be. What’s meant to be will come your way, what’s not will fade away.”

“You can’t control everything. Sometimes you just need to relax and have faith that things will work out.”

“When the tides of life turn against you and the current upsets your boat. Don’t waste those tears on what might have been, just lie on your back and float.”


Surrounding Self with Friends and Family

Without my family and friends, I would be nothing. No matter what, your family and friends are going to be your support system through all the good and bad times in your life. At the end of a relationship especially one that wasn’t the best, surrounding yourself with your closest friends and your family is the best therapy you can have. They are there to offer their love and support, to tell you that it is going to be okay, and to remind you of who you are. I know there were times throughout my old relationship where all I needed was a hug from my mom to make me feel so much better. After a messy break-up, it is key to establish your support system who is going to guide you through your new journey of self-love and self-worth.



Being positive is something that I have always struggled with. When you have been in a toxic relationship, whether it was six months or a year, it is hard to remain positive when all that surrounds you is negativity. The best thing one can do after a break-up is to create a no-negativity zone. You’ll soon start to love yourself again if you choose to have a positive outlook on your life. After a toxic relationship, it’s easy to feel negative, it’s easy to feel like you aren’t worthy of love, it’s easy to believe that something is wrong with you. Well, none of this is true. One way that I have learned how to remain positive on my journey of self-love is to tell myself that everything is going to be okay, that my life is where it is meant to be at this exact moment. Remaining positive is key to learning how to love yourself after a toxic relationship.


Create a Space for Healing and Love

One thing that you need to know is that it is okay to feel sad, it is okay to cry; it’s normal, we’re all human. After getting out of toxic relationship, it is important for you to learn how to heal and how to love yourself again. It won’t be easy, but one thing I always like to tell myself is that time will heal all wounds. All relationships are different and have their own issues. Something I find that is important in healing and learning how to love yourself again is reading books, listening to music, and doing the things that you truly love to do. One of my all-time favorite books is Milk and Honey by Rupi Kaur. Not only did this book change my outlook on life and love, it helped me to see my worth and it helped me to see what I deserve. Books that make you feel good about yourself and that you enjoy to read are important for healing and to see the beauty that is inside of and around you. Something else that helps is listening to music. Something I suggest is making a playlist of all your favorite songs that you love to jam out to, and label it something fun and creative that makes you happy. It might sound silly, but it’s something that has helped me through times. I like to turn on my playlist and sing my heart out because it makes me feel good about myself and it makes me feel more confident.

Making time for the things that you love to do plays a major part in healing and loving yourself. When you make time for the things you love, such as sports, reading, volunteering, etc. it makes you feel so good and it’ll put a smile on your face. By doing this, you’ll start to gain the confidence that you didn’t think you could.


Seek the Beauty That’s Around You

When you aren’t in the right head space, it is hard to see the beauty that surrounds you. Take time out of your day, whether it’s a half-hour or an hour, to go outside and get some fresh air. You can go on a walk or a run by yourself or with friends, or even go on a hike. You can sit on your porch, cuddled up with a blanket, a cup of coffee, and a good book. The world is a beautiful place, and it can become easy to lose sight of that, especially when you aren’t feeling so great about yourself or what’s happening in your life. We just need to open our eyes and be thankful for everything that we have been given in life.


Set Healthy Boundaries

Only you get to decide who and what inhabits your life. Create a space in your life where you are comfortable and confident. Do things that make you feel good about yourself. Find ways to see your beauty and worth. Let go of the past. Let go of the negative reminders of that bad relationship that you left behind, let go of all the things that make you feel trapped in the past, let go of the thoughts that bring you down. This doesn’t mean let go of all the good times you shared in your relationship, but start to let go of the bad. When you aren’t thinking of the memories from a painful past anymore, you will be on your way to a life of healing and self-love. You will start to feel good about where you are at, and where you are going to go.


Define What Self-Love is For Yourself

Self-love is different for everyone; everyone has different definitions of it. It is important that you define what self-love is for yourself. No matter what, self-love is very important for someone to have. It is important for you to look at yourself and think of the different ways to love yourself and see what works and what doesn’t work for you. A great way to start your self-love process is with affirmations, such as telling yourself that you are superior to negative thoughts or that you possess the qualities needed to be successful in your life. The tactics that you use to begin your journey of self-love will not work if you continue holding onto the pain and insecurity that you experience after the end of your relationship. It can be easy to eat food, drink or party, or use silly distractions to self-medicate your emotions. Instead of doing that, listen to what your mind and body wants from you and act on it.


Stop Replaying Negative Relationship Dialogue

Throughout your relationship or even after the break-up, negative words were probably exchanged. Words that stick in your mind and are almost impossible to get rid of. When someone that you love points out your insecurities that you are already aware of, it becomes easy to start truly believing it. Obsessing over the words that were said over the course of your relationship and what could have been different will not help, it will only make it worse. Instead of internalizing these words, take a step away from it. You need to understand that what this person said to you or about you are not true at all. You need to know that you are so much better off without that negativity in your life. Only we have the power to change our minds. By adopting self-care habits that are positive and making it a habit to walk away from the negative dialogue, you can become a more positive person.

I know what it is like to lose a person you love and I know what it is like to be in a toxic relationship that isn’t good for you at all. These tactics have helped me learn to love myself and find my worth again. Don’t think of the what could have been. Instead, think about all the amazing things that you have yet to achieve. You need to know that you will find the right person one day. Sometimes, you need to learn to love yourself, before you can love another.