I get it. You’re looking for signs that will help you determine if the relationship with your ex is rebuildable and thus worth fighting for. No one wants to spend time trying to rebuild an un-rebuildable relationship, after all. No one wants to try and rekindle things that are fated to stay frozen forever.
I argued in a previous article that if you want better chances of getting your ex back, you should stop obsessing over the signs that they will eventually come back. The reason being, obsessing about those signs only promotes unnecessary stress, worry, neediness and makes one inclined toward self-sabotage. None of which help you rekindle things or feel better.
In this article, I will make a similar argument. The only difference is that I’ll go one step further: don’t just stop obsessing over the signs your ex will never come back; convince yourself that they all have giant checkmarks next to them. Put differently; act as if your ex is never, EVER, coming back.
Counterintuitively, this mentality will increase the likelihood of your ex coming back. Plus, it will even help you recover faster and feel better. So, stick with me here. It will all make sense in the end.
Below, I’ll go over 14 imperative signs indicating your ex is never coming back, so we’re all on the same page about what we’re discussing. Next, I’ll explain why it’s best to pretend that there’s a big checkmark next to each of those signs. And in the end, I’ll explain how you can adopt this “it’s over for good” mentality despite any mental adversities.
Signs your Ex Is Never Coming Back
1. Your ex told you to move on already. The only exception is if they keep telling you this as a form of reverse psychology aimed at winning you back. Sadly, this happens more times than you think. Several greedy “get your ex back” gurus teach this dirty trick in their sham programs.
2. Your ex blocked you and is avoiding you. When a person blocks you on social media or blatantly avoids communicating with you, it’s because they don’t like you and probably don’t want anything to do with you. That being said, sometimes the person you’re trying to get back together with is just an avoidant. But more often than not, the former is the case.
3. Your ex removed every trace of you from social media. Tying in with the sign above, If your ex unfollowed you from everywhere, deleted any pictures of you, and completely revamped their online profiles where there’s not a crumb of their past love life revealed, then it’s safe to say that they don’t want you back. At least not at the moment.
4. Your ex keeps making excuses when you invite them out. If your ex keeps telling you things like “maybe I’ll go out next week,” “I’m busy right now,” or “I have some errands I need to take care of,” there’s a good chance that they don’t want to be near you at the moment. Remember, always focus on what a person does, not what they say.
5. Your ex is married/is getting married. Need I say anything else? Never get entangled in these situations, even if your ex is willing to cheat. Stay away.
6. Your ex speaks badly about you to mutual friends and family. While you could argue that hate (also, hostility, anger, and mockery) is not the opposite of love (indifference is), thus it’s still a form of love, I disagree. Hate is still hate. You don’t want to see people you hate. I don’t want to see people I hate. No one wants to see people they hate.
7. Your ex doesn’t care if you’re seeing someone else. If your ex is not showing any signs of jealousy, frustration, or concern when they know or even witness that you’re dating other people, they’re probably over you.
8. Your mutual friends tell you to move on. Mutual friends (of your ex and you) usually have an accurate idea of where you stand with them. Obviously, this is to be expected. Their head is not clouded with emotions, and they probably discussed you with your ex at some point. Therefore if they advise you to move on, it’s wise to listen to them.
9. Your ex returns all of your stuff. This activity is the equivalent of burning bridges with someone. The fewer things your ex has at your place, the less need there is to contact you about them.
10. You go long-distance. If your ex moved far away from you, or vice versa — far being relative to the individual — re-attraction probably won’t work out. To get your ex back, you need to meet them in person and keep meeting them until you rekindle things. This clearly can’t happen when you’re miles apart.
11. Your ex wants to be “just friends.”Your ex may want to use friendship as a backdoor to another relationship, but this is rare, especially if you’re the dumpee. More commonly, they put forward the idea because they want to let you down gently, that is, avoid hurting you any further. (Note: never accept friendship if you want your ex back.)
12. The blatantly obvious. If you and your ex parted ways due to physical or emotional abuse, manipulation, lies, cheating, criminal acts, or just about anything toxic, the odds of reconciling are not exactly in your favor — nor should they be. Leave toxic relationships behind you.
13. Your ex is already dating someone new. If this happened right after your breakup, it could be a rebound. However, if your ex found someone weeks or even months after you parted, it could because they got over you and want to move on to someone new. My advice in that case? Go and find someone new yourself. There’s a lot of options out there.
14. You have a strong gut feeling. I know I’m regurgitating the one sign every other blog told you about, but I just had to include it in this list because of its easily overlooked significance. So here goes: if you can sense your ex doesn’t want you back, you’re probably right. Listen to what your gut tells you.
Why you should act as if your ex is never coming back
For one, as counterintuitively as it sounds, when you stop caring and hoping for your ex’s return, you raise your chances of getting them back. The reason being is the scarcity bias that’s ingrained in our minds. Meaning: whatever or whoever is hard to get, unreactive, or unresponsive is usually deemed more desirable and attractive. (1)
Just don’t take this the wrong way. If you approach getting your ex back with manipulation and deceit that exploits the other person’s scarcity bias, you’re setting yourself up for disaster.
Rather than engaging in band-aid solutions, do deep, meaningful work. Convince yourself that your relationship is over. Work on moving on for good. Cut your ex out of your life — but not for the sake of winning them back, but for the sake of winning yourself back.
The next reason you should act as if your ex is never coming back is tied to accelerated recovery. Here’s what I mean: when you strip yourself of any hope of reconciliation, you have no shared future with your ex to look forward to. Thus, the only thing that’s left is to focus on yourself.
You can reflect on why your relationship didn’t work out. You can overcome any self-esteem issues or neediness that may be plaguing your mind. You can map out what kind of partner you actually want — what’s the next best thing after your ex? You can ponder how to move forward and rebuild your life.
And finally, the last reason you should act as if your ex is never coming back is all about well-being and productivity, and it piggybacks on the previous one.
The idea is that when you wholly focus on yourself and your personal development after a breakup, you simultaneously begin cultivating a more peaceful and relaxed state of mind. And as a result, you absorb even more benefits: better sleep, better diet, better productivity, better mental health, and an overall enhanced dose of happiness and well-being.
What’s not to love! Seriously. These benefits are nothing to laugh about. The upside of acting as if your ex is gone for good far exceeds the downsides. In fact, we could even argue that there are no downsides to the mentality.
Now that I’ve got you all stirred up about this idea, you’re probably wondering, “Gee whiz, Max. I’m diggin’ this shit, but how do I implement the mentality?”
I’m glad you asked.
How to act as if your ex is never coming back
First, let your ex go. Cut them out of your life. Ditch any hope that they’ll return. This may sound abstract and intricate, but it’s actually pretty simple (yet, emotionally challenging). All you have to do is decide to walk away from your ex for good, despite wanting them back. For, this will counterintuitively give you the best chance of actually getting them back. Hence the saying, “attraction grows in space.”
A mentality that would work in tandem with letting your ex go, making it easier for you to get your life back on track, would be deciding that all the signs your ex is never coming back from earlier are gleefully checked off. Try it out. The idea is to act as if from now on your ex wants nothing to do with you. They’ve blocked you. They’re avoiding you. They keep talking shit about you. And they fucked all your friends.
Next, don’t shy away from feeling bad. Empty your mind of any morning chants, grandiose affirmations, and over-the-top, jovial visualizations — a.k.a., toxic self-help. You don’t need to make yourself feel good. Besides, wanting to feel good all the time will just backfire and turn you into an entitled, narcissistic dipshit. What you should do instead is get good at feeling bad.
One way of practicing getting good at feeling bad is with what the Stoics call negative visualization. Essentially, it’s the practice of turning towards negative emotions and experiences instead of away from them. Or, put differently, envisioning your worst-case scenario in order to better prepare for it. (2)
So, if you’re afraid that your ex will tell everyone how bad you are in bed, envision that. If you’re scared of your ex disparaging or mocking your pet- peeves and personal values, envision that. If you’re nervous about your ex having sex with your best friend, envision that. If you’re scared of your ex never, ever, coming back, envision that.
This will hurt at first, but it will make you a stronger, more resilient person. For being resilient doesn’t mean feeling good all the time—it means being okay with feeling bad sometimes.
Once you’ve decided to let your ex go and got better at feeling bad, keep remaking that decision and keep improving. Rinse, recycle, repeat. Repeat the decision and practice the mentality, until both become deeply ingrained habits. And above all, focus on self-improvement. Focus on it without guilt and remorse. If you want to deal with this breakup effectively you’ll have to change from the inside out.
This will feel weird at first. Most people think they should be fighting for their ex’s love instead of focusing on themselves. Turns out, this couldn’t be further from the truth. Your ex is not special. And the more you try and pursue or chase after them, the less attracted they’ll become. But the less you pursue or chase and the more you invest in yourself, the higher the likelihood of getting them more attracted to you.
So don’t linger. Throw yourself in self-improvement. Do meditation, start a journal, take care of your diet, improve your social skills, read some good self-help books, try therapy, go wild. There are a million and one options out there. I’m sure you can find something that resonates with you.
The uncomfortable truth
If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you know the uncomfortable truth: most exes don’t come back. And even when they do, the rekindled relationship rarely lasts more than a few months.
The only time you’ll ever have a fair chance of re-attracting and keeping your ex is when your values and lifestyle choices align, when you surmount the tendencies that made you part ways, and when you do the required personal development work on yourselves — when you change yourselves for the better.
Sadly, there’s no quick fix for changing who you are. Personal transformations don’t happen in 30, 45, or even 90 days, as people often assume. They take half a year to a decade, depending on the individual. Be prepared for this. I know it sounds harsh, but as I said, it’s the uncomfortable truth. It’s meant to sound harsh. Nevertheless, there’s a bright side to the whole thing.
Now that you’re a proud member of Singledom, you have a bazillion opportunities to find a more compatible partner. And if that’s not up your alley, you can also go on an un-attached dating rampage as I did.
Sooner or later, you’ll either meet someone better than your ex and commit to them or start enjoying being single/dating. Regardless, a time will come when you’ll be at peace again. And when that happens, the past will stay in the past, and you’ll never look back.
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