Sometimes a relationship ends on good terms and opens up the possibility for friendship somewhere down the road. Other times, it ends badly because of so many reasons your head can’t stop spinning.
I’ve been on both sides.
And whether it was a positive or negative experience, once everything is said and done, you and your ex aren’t necessarily “said and done”.
Removing your ex can seem impossible. I know that cutting someone out of your life 100% isn’t easy, even if they hurt you and especially if they didn’t. Luckily, it just feels impossible and it actually couldn’t be further from the truth. Really.
We’re all looking for ways to save ourselves from pointless frustration, stress and tears. Unfortunately our ex’s are often the ones behind these negative feelings, especially if the breakup is fresh.
Granted, this isn’t a miracle overnight fix. But in order to start a new chapter in my life – completely ex-free – I needed to follow a few steps.
1. Say your piece and then close the door – officially.
We’re told to delete our ex from everything – our phones, our Facebook, our radar – in hopes of eventually deleting them fully from our lives. Abruptly blocking them from all the places they contact us sounds effective, but often it ends up being temporary. Before we can remember why we removed them in the first place, we’re reopening that door and fresh wounds along with it.
The better alternative is to leave them with a final message. Once the message is sent you won’t be tempted to open the lines of communication again just to answer their questions, the most prominent being why you’ve suddenly disappeared off their feeds.
The message doesn’t have to be long and doesn’t even have to be in person if it makes you uncomfortable. What it does need to say is:
- The relationship is over
- Why you can’ t do it anymore
- That you need to move on (and so do they)
Hit send, hang up the phone, or walk away without feeling like you owe your ex any further explanation. This is about you after all.
2. Grieve, mourn, breathe.
Just because you closed the door doesn’t mean you’ll automatically feel ten times better. You may not feel even the least bit okay about your decision. Any break up I had I’d regret instantaneously. But I now know that’s perfectly alright. You don’t have to pretend everything is sunshine and rainbows and you definitely don’t need to act like a superhero if you’re not feeling up to it.
Instead let yourself be upset. Watch hours of Netflix, sit with supportive friends and family. Or go out – stretch those limbs and put that energy somewhere you’ve been wanting to lately. This is your healing time, so take up as much of it as you need!
And remember to breathe.
3. Find yourself before you find someone else.
Dating someone new the moment you feel “up to it” seems natural. It’s a perfect distraction – and often times easier than dealing with post-breakup negative thoughts. But this mentality actually hurts you more than you’d think.
I know it’s hard and probably one of the last things you want to do but try to find yourself first. What do you want – either in a relationship or on your own? What do you need in your life? Where do you want to go and with who? What do you want to learn and how do you want to proceed?
Answering these questions can make a healthier and stronger you and that will translate into your next relationship. I think it’s time to start working towards a healthier, more positive, and ex-free chapter of your life, don’t you think?