When someone hurts you, you should maybe keep in mind what a wise person once said, “Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional.”
When it comes to being hurt and dealing with feelings of pain, this saying should be your best friend.
It teaches you that there are ways out of your situation that doesn’t involve the degradation of your mental or emotional states.
I know, as a human being, it is natural to feel hurt, especially at the hands of your loved ones.
But that doesn’t mean you have to keep suffering endlessly.
If you follow some simple do’s and don’ts, you can easily maneuver through your situation and find happiness again.
Let’s take a look at some of these below.
- 1. Try To Understand The Situation
- 2. Respond, Don’t React
- 3. Mend Things If Possible
- 4. Create And Communicate Boundaries
- 5. Define The Pain
- 6. Feel And Express The Pain
- 7. Try To Stay In The Present
- 8. Stop Rehashing The Story
- 9. Forgive Yourself
- 10. Forgive The Other Person
- 11. Stop Playing The Victim
- 12. Don’t Let The Pain Become Your Identity
- 13. Reconnect With The Person You Were Before The Pain
- 14. Focus On The Things That Bring You Joy
- 15. Share That Joy With Other People
- 16. Meditate
- 17. Journal
- 18. Meet New People
- 19. Talk To A Counselor
- 20. Turn The Experience Into A Lesson
It goes without saying that this is the first thing you need to do.
If someone has hurt you, there must be a reason behind it.
Nobody does anything without a reason, right?
I am not saying that they are justified in hurting you, but you need to understand why they did it in the first place.
This will be the starting point of your next course of action.
So, sit down for a second and think about what the other person said and why they might have said it.
If it’s one of your loved ones, this might be easier to do. Were they having a bad day and just burst out due to their stressed state of mind?
Did they hear a false rumor about you and just lashed out at you? Or could it be that they are actually angry about something else and took it out on something else entirely?
Questions like these can help you understand the situation at hand and the motivation behind the other person’s anger or rude behavior.
Once you’ve figured this out, you can move to the next point.
Generally, when people are faced with an abnormal situation, they tend to react impulsively.
Sometimes, the brain doesn’t even think properly and immediately goes into a defensive mode when it senses danger.
This also applies to situations when someone hurts you emotionally.
As such, your first instinct might be to lash out and defend yourself aggressively.
You and I both know that this only makes matters worse.
Not only does it strain the relationship with the other person, but it also makes you feel bad afterward. It can even intensify your feelings of being hurt.
A better option would be to respond instead of reacting.
What’s the difference, you ask?
Well, the first one requires taking a pause and crafting a well-thought-out action. This pause gives you the time to do the right thing at the right time for the right reason. By responding, you can better control your behavior and focus your attention on solving the matter at hand instead of escalating it further.
For example, if your boyfriend shouts at you for some reason, you should stop and think about the matter first. Then, you can respond by saying that you don’t appreciate him shouting at you and that he shouldn’t do it again in the future.
Sometimes, things between two people get too sour to fix.
Sometimes, you just can’t be around a person, no matter how hard you try.
In cases, like these, you have no option but to leave.
However, before things get to that point, you could try and mend things if possible.
Of course, that would require a great level of compassion and tolerance from your side.
But if the other person means a lot to you, you could consider doing it. After all, your relationships should matter more to you than a bad event or two.
So, have an honest conversation with the person who hurt you and let them speak their heart out.
In turn, you should tell them how they made you feel and how you can mend the situation. This conversation can also help solve any misunderstandings that might have led to this situation.
And if both of you are willing, things will get back to normal in no time.
Boundaries are really necessary for life.
Whether it is your personal life or professional life, boundaries tell other people how they should behave with you, what things you will tolerate, what things you will not tolerate at all, and so on.
Check our article about healthy boundaries HERE.
If someone has hurt you, and you can’t cut contact with them, it’s probably a good idea to create boundaries for them.
For example, if your sibling has said some really hurtful things to you, you may not want to cut them from your life, but at the same time, you may not want to put the same level of effort into your relationship with them.
To that end, you could create and communicate your boundaries.
For example, you may not want to share intimate details with them anymore. Or you could stop making as many sacrifices for them as you used to before.
This would not only make them understand that they did something wrong but it would also encourage them not to repeat it in the future.
Sometimes, things can be so complex that you might not even know how exactly you feel.
Sometimes, it might not be possible to figure out what’s hurting you and why.
In times like these, it is important to introspect a little and decipher your emotional state.
To solve any situation, you need to have clarity.
Otherwise, you will just keep taking the wrong decisions.
So, be clear about why you are hurt. Define the pain that you feel.
- What is it about the other person’s actions or words that has made you feel so terrible?
- Was it because of your own insecurity?
- Could your low self-esteem have been the reason?
Only by acknowledging and being clear about the reasons behind your pain can you move forward in life.
These reasons will provide you with solutions to your current predicament.
For example, if you got hurt because your spouse came home late after spending time with their friends, it might be because you are insecure about yourself or the relationship. In this case, you could work on yourself to be more trusting and have faith that your spouse loves and cares about you. Insecurities tend to vanish when you develop confidence and faith in yourself.
Many people tend to bottle up their emotions and feelings.
In wanting to remain positive, they keep denying that they are in pain. Of course, this is not how one should act.
Doing so will only make matters worse in the long run.
After all, bottled-up feelings can manifest as physical and mental issues in the future. And one day, they can erupt like a volcano.
It’s a better idea to let yourself feel the pain and find healthy ways of expressing it.
- You could talk to the person who hurt you and let them know how you’re feeling.
- You could talk to one of your loved ones and share your emotional situation with them.
- You can even write a letter to yourself mentioning all the hurtful feelings and then burn it.
The point is to process the feelings and allow them to pass through you.
Do not let them stay with you. Otherwise, you might live life dragging a piece of heavy emotional baggage. And that is nothing but painful.
Spiritual gurus always say that most humans share a common bad habit – the habit of staying in the past or the future.
They say that this is a major reason for our suffering.
If you think about it, they are absolutely right.
The past is already gone and there is no use thinking about it (except to learn from it). And the future hasn’t happened yet… so there is no use trying to think about it either.
So, what should one do?
The answer is simple – stay in the present.
For thousands of years, monks, spiritual gurus, saints, and other distinguished people have said that we should be mindful of the present moment.
Only then can we truly enjoy and appreciate our lives. And frankly, the present moment is all that we’ve got.
It’s the only thing that really exists.
So, when someone hurts you, try to bring your attention to the present moment and the task at hand. Focus on the now.
Try to do your best at whatever you’re doing. And know in your heart that this moment is all that matters.
The more you can stay in this state, the better it would be. This practice will stop you from reliving the same pain over and over again. And it will definitely prevent you from going into a downward spiral.
Yeah I know it is easier said than done… but just trying can make a huge difference…
This is an extension of the previous point.
When we go through a traumatic event, we keep rehashing the story over and over again… not only to ourselves but also to our loved ones.
You might have done it yourself or seen somebody else do it.
Sure, this might be a way for you to process what happened. It might be a way for you to understand why the other person hurt you.
But when enough time has passed after someone hurt you, it is better to let it go than to keep remembering it or talking about it in front of other people.
No matter what your loved ones say or do, nothing is going to change the past. It is there forever.
What you can do, however, is move on.
I know nobody likes to hear this, but this is the ultimate truth.
You can’t move forward in life if you’re stuck in a memory.
You know… during the course of our lives, we forgive countless people.
We see their mistakes as errors in judgment. We tell ourselves that it’s okay and move on with our lives.
But, when it comes to our own selves, we rarely show the same level of compassion.
Of course, this might not apply to everyone.
But usually, people are way too hard on themselves than they need to be.
When they make mistakes, they keep beating themselves about it.
If you tend to do this as well, we need to talk.
Look, if your mistake caused someone else to hurt you, there is no use blaming yourself for it forever. Yes, you made a mistake.
But you should also know that what you did doesn’t define you as a person.
So, forgive yourself and learn from the experience.
Say it out loud, “I forgive myself.” Let that immense burden of guilt and regret go. Trust me, it will make things a lot easier for you.
A wise person once said, “To err is human, to forgive divine.”
As humans, it is in our nature to make mistakes.
And in doing so, we might hurt other people even though we didn’t intend to. Ironically, this happens mostly with our loved ones.
We might say or do things to each other that can cause a lot of emotional pain.
But let me ask you something.
What is more important to you? Is your loved one more important, or are the smaller events of life more important? I am guessing it’s the former, correct? So, if that’s the case, you should have no problem forgiving them for hurting you!
I know it might not always be easy to forgive the person who has caused pain to you.
But sometimes, you have to let it go.
In the journey of life, it’s better if you don’t take things too seriously.
Especially when it comes to your loved ones. So, talk to the other person and tell them that you forgive them.
At times, when someone hurts you, you might feel like a victim.
You might feel like someone is oppressing you, and this would obviously feel terrible.
But even though the other person hurt you without any fault of your own, I would say that there is no use feeling like a victim.
That’s because doing so will only keep making you feel bad for yourself. It will keep you in a sorry state where you can’t do anything for your own self.
Obviously, this is not a situation you want to land yourself in.
Instead, you need to aim at becoming stronger.
So what if someone hurt you? That doesn’t define you or your life! If anything, it might say something about the other person.
So, don’t waste your time and energy feeling weak and defeated.
Take charge of your own happiness and take responsibility for your life. You are strong and worthy! Nobody should have the power to stop you or make you feel something that you don’t want to.
A lot of people tend to do this.
You might know some of them yourself!
When a person goes through a lot of pain, they might make that their identity. They might start living their life in a constant state of pain believing that that’s how it’s supposed to be.
I know this doesn’t make any logical sense, but human beings have complex behaviors.
Sometimes, the pain can get stuck in your mind, and you just can’t see a way out of it.
It then starts seeping into your actions, decisions, attitudes, values, and behavior. Everything you do starts reflecting that pain.
In a way, you become your pain.
If this sounds like a horrible situation, you are absolutely right.
And you should do everything you can to prevent this from happening to you.
So, what exactly can you do in this regard?
Well, you need to process your pain and understand that it’s a part of your life… not your entire life. You need to find joy in other people and things. You need to devote your life to a larger purpose so that your focus is used someplace productive.
This is kind of an extension of the previous point.
When someone hurts you so badly that it gives you immeasurable pain, that might change you as a person.
- You might lose interest in relationships in general.
- You might become distant and disinterested.
- And you might not even want to do anything to make yourself happy again.
Yes, pain can do such things to people.
And if this is your situation, then you need to wake up!
One singular event doesn’t define your entire life. One person doesn’t dictate your direction in life. Think of it as a storm that came and went away. Is it logical to still be in the same state when that storm was present in your life? Of course, not!
So, try to reconnect with the person you were before you went through all that pain.
- Do you remember what you used to like and why?
- Do you remember all the little things that brought a smile to your face?
- Do you remember how passionate you used to be about certain things in life?
Remind yourself of all these things and become that person again.
That’s the only way to find peace and happiness.
The journey to experience happiness and peace again in life after a painful incident can be quite tough.
Your brain might keep reminding you of what happened and how it made you feel.
Sometimes, it’s your own mind that acts as your worse enemy.
But fear not! Just focus on taking the little steps, and you will get to where you need to be.
To that end, start by focusing on all the things that bring you joy. It might be something as small as drinking a warm cup of coffee or something bigger like going on a weekend trip with your best friends. You can make this process easier by making a list and following them every day.
For example, you could spend more time with your family, take up a sport that you have always wanted to learn, go on afternoon picnics, watch a tv show all by yourself, eat your favorite snacks in bed, and so on.
With time, these little moments of joy will add up and make happiness a permanent companion in your life.
It is said that pain gets reduced when you share it with other people and happiness gets multiplied.
So, when you finally start finding your happiness after a painful incident, try to make other people a part of it.
The more you share that joy with other people, the more it will grow.
Some people tend to isolate themselves when they feel hurt and vulnerable. They feel that that’s the safe thing to do. On the contrary, they should lean on others to not only help them find peace and happiness but also to share it with them.
That’s what life is all about, right?
Our loved ones are our greatest support system.
But we have to use that system for it to work.
So, make sure you make them a part of your journey. Talk with them, share intimate details with them, share a meal, go out and watch a movie together, take a break and do nothing ( just their presence is enough), or go to a beach and create new and happy memories.
It’s really that easy sometimes!
When it comes to mental and emotional issues, there is perhaps a no better solution than meditation.
This ancient spiritual practice is still used by hundreds of millions of people around the world to live peaceful and happier lives.
And if someone has hurt you, you should make this practice a part of your life without a second thought.
So, how exactly does meditation help?
Well, regular practice can actually lead to physical changes in your brain that enhance your emotional intelligence, cognitive abilities, focus, empathy, and more.
It also reduces the size of your amygdala, which is the part of your brain that is responsible for feelings of anxiety, fear, and stress.
Naturally, if you meditate regularly, you will be able to remain happy and joyful effortlessly. You will not have the need to either attack or defend yourself when someone hurts you.
So, start by meditating for at least 5 or 10 or 20 minutes daily to begin with. Make sure you do it in a comfortable place where you won’t be disturbed. You don’t have to do anything fancy… just close your eyes and focus on your breath.
Journalling or journaling ( whatever the spelling lol) is another great way of dealing with all the thoughts and feelings you are bombarded with when someone hurts you.
In fact, even emperors and philosophers thousands of years ago used to journal during their free time.
The reason journalling works so well is that it allows you to give form to your thoughts and feelings.
It compels you to take something complicated and turn it into simple words. This helps you understand everything that’s going on inside your mind and heart.
It helps you make sense of what you’re going through.
And there is a great sense of peace in doing so.
So, take some time each day (preferably before you go to bed) and write down anything that comes to your mind. Let the feelings flow from your heart, through your pen, and to the pages of your journal.
Doing so after you’ve been hurt will help you get back to normal very quickly.
Sometimes, when someone hurts you, there is no option left but to move on from them.
This typically happens in romantic relationships.
For example, if your spouse or partner abused you physically or cheated on you, you might not want to continue your relationship with them. You might not even want to talk to them ever again.
In situations like these, it is better to distance yourself from them and cut all ties (if you want to).
Yes, it is definitely going to hurt in the short term, but that’s the best thing you can do for your future.
And although your loved one’s behavior or actions might make you lose all faith in humanity or the very concept of relationships, please know that not everybody is like them.
So, when you’re ready, try to meet new people.
You could ask your friends to help you meet someone new, or you could take it upon yourself. These days there are endless ways of discovering the right people.
But whatever you do, don’t give up hope on relationships.
Don’t let your negative experience throw you into isolation.
Sometimes, things can get too out of hand.
The hurt can be too much for you to bear.
And all of this might make it impossible for you to live a normal life. In situations like these, it is better to talk to a counselor sooner rather than later.
Counselors are trained to handle the situations that you are facing.
In fact, they might have years of experience advising other people who were in the same situation as you find yourself in right now. And so, they can show you the right way forward. They can help you make sense of the situation and your intense thoughts and feelings.
So, don’t hesitate in talking to a counselor if that’s what you need right now.
And when you do, help them help you.
Don’t repress anything.
Express yourself as best as you can. And know that you’ve taken the first step in finding peace again.
Every experience we go through in life teaches us a valuable lesson (if we are willing to learn that is).
These lessons make us stronger and wiser.
And they help us wade through the journey of life as better versions of ourselves.
As you can probably tell, these lessons are important, no matter how hard they may be.
So, when someone hurts you, try to turn the experience into a lesson.
- Figure out what you can learn about yourself or the other person.
- Did the hurt open your eyes to a new or existing reality?
- Did it shine a light on any hidden aspect of your character?
- How can you grow stronger from this?
- What can you do to not repeat the same incident again?
These questions need deep reflection.
And their answers will help you become wiser.
They will liberate you from the pain you might be going through and set you on a path of recovery and happiness.