Whether you want to get your ex back, find someone better, or just enjoy life again, recovering from your breakup is always the first step. This guide will help you take it — in a fun, light, and tip-rapid-fire way.
Tip 1: Lie down.
Tip 2: Try not to cry.
Tip 3: Cry a lot.
Tip 4: Here’s an image to help you out. Thank me later.
Tip 5: Don’t stop shedding tears until you let them all out for the day. Cry until you can’t cry anymore. Then whenever you feel like crying, repeat this step.
Tip 6: Realise that even though it may not seem like it, but people actually do care about your well-being. Even if they sometimes don’t know how to show it.
Tip 7: Feel better now?
Tip 8: No? It’s okay. Here’s a funny picture to cheer you up.
Tip 9: Cool, right? Now, stop taking yourself, your breakup, and your life so damn seriously.
Tip 10: Pour yourself a drink. But skip this step if you are: a) an alcoholic, b) have a medical condition that prevents alcohol use, c) already drunk, or d) 12-years-old — (Feat MarkManson).
Tip 11: Take a look at this photo.
Tip 12: Realize your problems are not all that special or unique and, most certainly, nothing compared to the ones of holocaust victims. Further, realize and accept that your ex was nothing special too. They are also a flawed person with their own set of emotional issues, toxic qualities, and lousy beliefs — just like you and me. And your relationship with them is replaceable. Admit this to yourself even if you still want to get your ex back.
Tip 13: Slap yourself. Preferably, more than once…
Tip 14: Realize how the pain from those slaps combined with your breakup’s pain is still nowhere near as severe as the pain a Holocaust victim felt.
Tip 15: Feel guilty and weird for thinking your breakup is life-shattering and far worse than it really is.
Tip 16: Slap yourself again. Hard. (This is fun to watch)
Tip 17: Stimulate those genitals. Seriously, masturbation helps take the edge off. It’s proven to lead to relaxation, and relaxation is proven to lead to better decision-making and healthier well-being.
Tip 18: Decide to move on. As much fun as getting back with your partner is (or just having that one last breakup sex), I can’t recommend it to virtually anyone. Don’t get me wrong. You CAN get your ex back, but you always need to ask yourself if that’s the right thing to do. For most people, it’s not. They are just afraid that they won’t meet anyone better in the future, so they resort to chasing their past lovers.
Tip 19: Take full responsibility for your breakup. It might not be your fault that your relationship ended, but it’s always on you how you’ll respond to its end. And for God’s sake, don’t blame your ex for the whole thing. It takes two to fuck up a relationship.
Tip 20: Cultivate forgiveness. Forgive yourself if you’re the reason your relationship ended. It’s fine. We all make mistakes. The same applies to your ex. If the breakup was their fault, forgive them. Again, we all make mistakes. And if the breakup is the fault of both, forgive yourself as well as them. Oh yeah, and while you’re at it, forgive me for wanting to see you slap yourself. Sorry about that.
Tip 21: Cultivate patience. I know several greedy “gurus,” tell you how you can move on in just a few days or weeks, but we both know that’s bullshit. It’s going to take months, maybe even years. Accept this.
Tip 22: Burn the past. Is your ex a natural giver? Did they shower you with presents? If so, great! Stack all their gifts up in a neat little pile (preferably somewhere outside), sprinkle some gasoline on it, light a match and throw it in the center. Then watch the magic. Preferably, with Ellie Goulding’s, Burn in the Background.
If burning your exes gifts or belongings is too extreme for you, just move them somewhere out of sight. As the adage goes, “Out of sight, out of mind.”
Tip 23: Go on a social media detox. Delete your exes’ phone number, text, and email exchanges. Then purge their presence of your social media feeds — unfollow or block them on all channels. (Skip the blocking part if you want them back, though. )
Tip 24: Go, no-contact. Your ex? Who? Exactly. You don’t reach out to them anymore. You don’t even wish them a happy birthday. If they ever contact you, either engage with them and invite them out if your goal is reconciliation or politely write them off (you can also ignore/ghost them) if your goal is to just move on. The choice is yours.
Tip 25: Accept the reality of your situation. Breakups suck. Don’t fight the reality, don’t deny it, don’t ignore it, don’t distract yourself from it… just accept it.
Tip 26: Accept that life goes on. Then choose how you wish to continue living it. Will you stay miserable or make something good out of the whole thing — will you move forward, or will you move backward?
There’s no moral system or person who can give you the answers to those things. You have to decide what to do with your life now and where to take it. You’re condemned to freely choose your own path in life, be that one of growth or demise. So choose.
Tip 27: Embrace your pain. Suffering is an ineliminable ingredient of the human condition – it’s intertwined in the fabric of our life. We can’t get rid of it, so stop trying to. Instead, treat it as a means by which you can grow into a more resilient person in the face of struggle.
Tip 28: Don’t compare your suffering to the suffering of others. Especially not to the suffering of your ex. There’s a common fallacy people fall from when they get into a breakup. They think they’re the only ones suffering. This is often false. Your ex is also suffering, even if it doesn’t seem like it at times. They are, just like you, pondering and reflecting on their lost relationship, perhaps even grieving.
Tip 29: Join breakup support groups, be that via Facebook, Reddit, or obscure online forums. Once you’re in there, whine about your problems. Explain yourself. Let it all out, and hear what others have to say. You’re never suffering alone. Remember that. Frequent interaction with other people, especially groups, will make you feel less lonely.
Tip 30: Talking of loneliness, call up a friend, and let them know how much they mean to you. If that’s too cringey, call them up and invite them on a cup of coffee. Socialize, for God’s sake. Yes, even if you’re an introvert and even if you don’t feel like it.
Tip 31: Meditate. Sit somewhere quiet, cross your legs, get your back straight and close your eyes. Start inhaling through your nose and exhaling out the mouth. Repeat this inhale-exhale motion for about 10 minutes, all while counting each breath you take. And whenever you get distracted by a thought or two, accept it, and start counting your breaths from 0. (Learn how to do this in detail, here)
Tip 32: Journal. Take out a pen and paper and write down your thoughts. You can write about your breakup, emotions, the assholes in your life, what you’re grateful for, or what you’re sad about. The point is to let all of your sentiments hang out on the pages of your journal. (Learn how to do this in detail, here)
Tip 33: Do cognitive behavioral therapy exercises to lessen the intrusive thoughts of your ex. While there are hundreds of these exercises, here’s one that worked best for my clients and me.
- Buy a rubber band.
- Put the rubber band on your wrist.
- Snap it every time you have a thought that’s related to your ex.
You might laugh at this, but it really works. In fact, it’s proven to work and is widely used in many branches of behavioral therapy. Keep doing it for a few weeks, and see how the snapping helps you lessen those pesky obsessive thoughts.
Tip 34: Get some sleep; you look tired.
Tip 35: Replace those yummy, yummy sugary foods with healthy variants. I’m no doctor, but I know that consuming sugar makes your emotions go rampant. But on the flip side, don’t go too far with this. Have cheat days where you eat nothing but shit.
Tip 36: Take yourself on a date (cinema, fancy dinner, etc.). But be sure you’re doing it for the right reason – because you want to. And not because some random blogger on the Internet told you so. That’s when these things truly make you feel better.
Tip 37: Don’t work for long hours. Take more time off than usual.
Tip 38: If you’re distracting yourself with something – meaning, indulging in escapism, try to catch and stop yourself from doing that.
Tip 39: Just to be clear, if I’m not already: go out and socialize with even more friends! I can’t explain how much this contributes to breakup recovery.
Tip 40: Party like a rock star. Call your ex while drunk. Float in embarrassment due to your drunk dial and feel like shit for the next three days or so. If you need to cry, do so. You really embarrassed yourself with that drunk dial.
Tip 41: Contemplate your own death. Ponder on it, even if it feels uncomfortable. Death, or the shortness of life, is a powerful motivator to do better in life and make something of yourself.
Tip 42: Buy my Book. It contains 120 pages of cut-the-fluff exercises grounded in proven science and therapy that will make this moving-on thing so much faster. Yes, yes, a shameless self-plug. I couldn’t help it.
Tip 43: Go on on a date or two. But only start dating when it genuinely feels exciting and fun. If you fail to do this, you may end up in a bad rebound relationship and only prolong your recovery. But then again, you could equally easily end up in a good rebound. Proceed carefully.
Tip 44: Try dream reporting. This activity stems from Freud’s work on the human subconscious. Basically, keep a journal of all your dreams for a month, then begin analyzing the patterns in them. This helps you figure out what suppressed emotions you have to deal with. It also has a particular therapeutic effect on people. (Learn how to do this in detail, here)
Tip 45: Combat bullshitty negative self-talk with stark realism. For example, instead of telling yourself, I’m a piece of shit for screwing up my relationship,” tell yourself, “I’m not a piece of shit. I just made some mistakes, as we all do. The fact that my relationship didn’t work doesn’t make me a bad person in any way, shape, or form.”
Tip 46: Practice self-love. The most significant step you can take towards self-love is to accept your flaws and embrace them and be willing to show them. Still, there are many other ways of showing yourself love, for example, buying yourself something nice, taking yourself somewhere lovely, doing something you enjoy.
Tip 47: Try art therapy. It’s a form of therapy (duh) where you process, reflect and express your emotions through drawing, sculpting, collage, or even digital art and photography.
Tip 48: Sing your favorite song at the top of your lungs. Preferably in the shower or car so nobody has to listen to you.
Tip 49: Have I already mentioned you should buy my Breakup Recovery Manual?
Tip 50: Set some post-breakup boundaries. By setting them, you’re limiting yourself from participating in dissatisfactory and unwelcome behaviors that prolong recovery. Here are three examples of what I mean:
- I will cut all contact with my ex and give myself time and space to grieve the loss of my relationship.
- I will not beat myself up mentally or chastise myself for the breakup by neglecting my self-care routines and acting without trust and respect for myself.
- I will recognize half-assed calls and texts from my ex and not stretch their meaning into something like, “Oh shit, they said, “Hi,” they must still love me! Wuhuu! Let’s get back together.”
Tip 51: Realize you overreacted about your breakup. Then laugh at yourself for being so blind. Even better, laugh in the warm company of friends.
Tip 52: Cultivate the mindset of outward pessimism, inward optimism. It goes like this, “my life sucks and the world is shit, yet I can handle it, and I’ll be better for it.”
Tip 53: Ponder on the lessons that your past relationship and the breakup taught you. Your emotional needs. Your needy tendencies. Your boundary issues. Your anxieties and insecurities. Your attachment type. Those kinds of things.
Tip 54: Don’t forget the lessons. Your future love life depends on them.
Tip 55: Find something more important than your breakup to give a fuck about. This can be something as grand as a life purpose or as small as your ambition to become a good writer, dancer, painter, or entrepreneur.
Tip 56: Each day when you wake up, remind yourself: this too shall pass. I know you don’t believe me right now, but really…this shit will pass. And you’ll be okay again.
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