Breaking up with someone is never easy, even if you're the one who called it off. But breakups are a part of life, and because of this, they are something that we should all learn how to handle in the best way possible.
While it might be tempting to go off the rails and blame every bad decision thereafter on your bad feelings, there are some steps you can take that will make everything a little easier.
Cut Off All Contact
Even though it will probably be really hard, the best thing to do is to stop talking to your ex altogether. There is an exception to every rule, but in general, being friends with exes doesn't make sense.
You don't have to hate them, but you also don't owe them anything. You know the age-old saying: Anyone who can stay friends with their ex is either still in love with them, or never was.
Try To Keep Things In Perspective
It can be really easy to fall into a hole of emotional despair when you are going through a breakup, but it's important to remember that you will come out of this in one piece and be a little wiser for it.
Do Not Lurk Their Social Media
Not being their friend extends to their social media. It can be hard to resist the temptation to stalk them on Instagram, but blocking and deleting them will be the best thing for your mental health. Its a breeding ground for speculation, and you'll probably end up hurting your own feelings.
You don't need to know what they're up to, and they don't need to see how you're doing.
Don't Fight Your Feelings
Let yourself feel all the things that you are going to feel...because it's going to be a lot. Fighting the way you feel is going to stop you from being able to process your emotions in a constructive way.
Besides, it's psychologically proven that there are many different stages to grief, and you have to go through them all to put something behind you.
Try Keeping A Journal
Keeping track of how you're feeling will help you be able to see how far you've come in your healing process. It will be an invaluable resource when it comes to working through your feelings.
Understand That Breakups Are Going To Happen
Breaking up is part of dating, and remembering that will help put the situation into a bit of perspective. You knew that this was a possibility when you started dating, and just because you didn't want it to happen doesn't mean that it wasn't going to happen.
It might be a good time to look back on the other relationships you've been in that ended and how you thought you might never get over those, but you did!
Don't Make Everything Your Fault
When you break up with someone, playing the blame game doesn't help anyone, especially when you're going to blame yourself.
It may actually be someone's fault, there's no question about that, but you have to trust that you gave everything you could in that relationship and it isn't your fault alone that things ended up the way they did.
Go A Bit Overboard With The Self-Care
There is no better time than when you're going through a breakup to indulge in some self-care. Take a bath every night one week, do those face masks, ignore your phone to read or watch all the 50 Shades of Grey movies.
Whatever self-care looks like to you is what you should spend the next little while exploring.
Get Back Into A Routine
It can be easy to let go of yourself and the things you have going on when you're going through a breakup. But a routine will help to keep you on track while you are going through the motions.
It doesn't have to be anything crazy, either. Set aside some time each week to do the things that matter, like meal prep, laundry, and that self-care we talked about earlier.
Make Peace With Being Single
Repeat after me: Being single is not the worst thing that is going to happen to you. One of the keys to being able to have a healthy relationship of any kind is knowing that you are whole by yourself. Work on that mentality while you go through a breakup.
Let Go Of The Hope That You Will Get Back Together
Don't waste your time thinking that you and your ex are going to get back together. It should never be something you count on because you're just going to have your heart broken all over again when you don't.
You broke up for a reason, and it's best to mourn the loss of that person like a death—they're not coming back and it's time for you to move on.
Try To Reflect On What You Learned From This Relationship
When things start to feel less sad, you'll be able to look back on your relationship and see that you had some really good times together, and those will be happy memories again someday.
You probably also learned some important things about yourself, like what you need from a relationship and what you don't want in a partner.
Think About Doing A Closure Ritual
It's cheesy, but there is something to be said about doing something that helps you mark the start of a new era in your life. Maybe you throw it back to high school and burn all the pictures you have of you and your ex, or maybe you write them one final goodbye letter that you never send.
But doing something that marks the end of the relationship can be super helpful, especially if you feel like you didn't get much closure.
Spend Some Time With Friends And Family
One of the best things to mend a broken heart is time spent with loved ones. Keep your circle small, and commit time to the relationships with your friends and family that you may have put on the back burner while you were with your ex.
Don't Let Your Ego Get In The Way Of Your Healing
This one is always tough because it's easy to think that your ex is never going to find anyone better than you. But the truth is that you and your ex are both going to find someone better for you than you were for each other.
Not having a big head about your breakup will help keep the angry and mean feelings at bay.
Explore Some New Interests
When you break up with someone, you have a lot of free time all a sudden, so it's a great time to start exploring new interests. If you've ever wanted to take an art class or a cooking class, now is the time!
Try Not To Let It Affect Other Parts Of Your Life
This one is really tough, and to a certain point unavoidable. But, as much as we want to believe Mindy Kailing was on to something when she pitched heartbreak days in The Mindy Project, we have to remember that the world doesn't stop because we are grieving.
If you have to take a personal day or two because you can't cope, that's fine, but don't put yourself in the position of losing things like your job or your health because you're going through a breakup.
Avoid Unhealthy Coping Mechanisms
Maybe the first night you feel up to going out post-breakup, if you have a bit too much to drink, no one is going to blame you. Maybe you order a whole pizza and eat it yourself, whatever. But, don't make those things a habit that you lean on to help you get over someone.
Don't Rush Yourself
Healing is going to take the time that it takes. There are no set guidelines for these things, and no one knows any better than you do. It goes back to allowing yourself to feel all your feelings. You have to allow yourself to take the time you're going to need to mend your broken heart.
When You're Ready, Start Dating Again
It might take some time, but eventually you'll be ready to start dating again, and that will be an exciting time! You don't have to jump into anything serious right away, but if you're comfortable with it, start flirting with the cute new coworker, or start using Tinder or Bumble.