It’s been years since I went through one of those soul-wrenching breakups; the kind that consume your thoughts for weeks and months at a time, the kind where all you can do is picture if he’s thinking about you and if he wants to talk to you and if he’s with another girl. But I’ve totally been there! All of us ladies have. You’re not alone, sister.
But all that obsessing isn’t making you feel good about yourself, and it’s definitely NOT helping you move on with your fabulous life.
My heart has been broken more times than I can even recall, but not once have I looked back and thought, “Gee, I wish I had wasted MORE of my precious life and time wallowing over that guy.” Get back in the ring! Don’t spend another second on someone who’s already looked you in the eye and told you he doesn’t want to be with you.
In fact, you can get over your ex right now, even if you’ve only broken up yesterday, if you just do this one thing: Stop thinking about him.
Yeah, I know. THAT’S THE PROBLEM! You can’t just stop thinking about him, and your relationship, and the tattered remains of your relationship. Breakups are the worst! Ugh. But to really put the past behind you and to leave all that BS in the dust, you have to actively control your mind and your emotions.
Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about how to process the relationship post-mortem, and I think these are the best tips I’ve ever gotten. Here’s how to stop obsessing about that loser, pronto:
1. You have to distract yourself every time you think of him. How? You have to train your mind to focus on positive things in your life that have NOTHING to do with him. Plan something fun and exciting for the future; set up a vacation with friends, get a cool new hobby, or start volunteering. Whenever a thought of him springs to mind, whether it’s that you still love him or miss him or that you hate his guts, immediately hit the switch in your brain and start thinking about this positive stuff and about how awesome your life is because you’re the one living it. If you do this enough, it will get easier and easier to distract yourself, until eventually, you won’t even need to do it anymore.
2. But what happens when you do slip up and think about him? It’s going to happen, because you’re human, and you’ve been deeply hurt by this dude. It would be weirder if you weren’t tempted to think about him at all.
The solution for me was to retrain my mind as to how I thought of him. In breakups, I’ve realized over the years that I tend to blame myself for everything; I’ve wasted so much time stewing endlessly over what I could have done to “drive him away”: Was I not pretty enough? Was it that one time I was cranky? Is my job not cool enough? The insecurities sent me into a spiral of rejection and self-pity, and it only made my sadness worse, because I was putting so much stock into what he thought of me.
You have to stop blaming yourself! Sometimes people just aren’t a good fit, and it doesn’t mean you aren’t amazing. Even if you did make a mistake, so what? People make mistakes. It’s part of life, and part of that invaluable learning process.
So instead of thinking about your ex as “that guy who broke my heart” or “the love of my life who I let get away,” you have to think of him in a way that pities him, not you. What if whenever you see his face or think about him in your mind, you instead label him to yourself as “that guy who couldn’t appreciate my awesomeness” or “that guy who wasn’t amazing enough for me.” In the beginning, you might feel really cheesy and stupid, and you might not even believe it’s true. But eventually, it will help you retrain your thoughts from obsessing over the breakup and your own faults to moving on to find someone who’s a better fit for you, without beating yourself up over what wasn’t the best match.
Breakup recovery starts small, with baby steps. Practice these techniques, and soon you’ll realize you’ve gone a whole hour without thinking about him; then an afternoon, then a whole day, and soon, you’ll get to the point where you can think about him and feel no emotion whatsoever (that’s how I always judge whether I’m really over a guy; today I can look back on several exes and think of them neutrally, without any spark of emotion. Yay!).
Do you have any post-breakup recovery tips to share?