It will never be easy to get over a breakup. Though people handle breakups differently, the feeling of pain, confusion, and doubt will always be there.
You feel pain because you’re losing someone that you love and has loved you– or maybe you’re still in love with them and weren’t ready to lose them at all.
You feel a sense of doubt with yourself because you initially think that you’re the reason as to why things ended.
This then leads to confusion as you’re not sure about what you should do next. Should you move to a new town? Should you tell your parents immediately that the engagement’s off? Is partying all night a better option or should you stay at home? Should you contact your ex and ask for a reconsideration?
Now, if you’re someone who just broke up with someone, it’s normal to feel these emotions. It’s okay to feel frustrated or confused about how things turned out. You should let it all out without feeling guilty about it. What’s not okay is to turn to unhealthy coping mechanisms as a way to deal with the breakup. By seeking temporary pleasures, you’re most likely prolonging the healing process.
With that being said, here’s a simple guide that will help you get through the confusing stages of a breakup, enabling you to process your breakups in a healthy way.
25 Healthy Ways to Get Over a Breakup
Having a broken heart sucks and will suck for some time. Though you have no control over what you feel, you have full control over how you’ll cope. Instead of seeking random highs just to temporarily ease off the pain, we suggest that you take the healthy steps towards healing. Here are 25 ways to do so.
Take some time to grieve.
First things first, take a moment to grieve. If you just came out of a breakup and aren’t in the mood for anything, feel free to rest on your bed. Acting like the breakup is nothing won’t do any favors for you and may even backfire in the long run.
It’s also okay to take fewer responsibilities during this crucial time. If there are events or meetups that you no longer want to attend, just inform the people beforehand. If you have personal projects that you would want to stop temporarily, it’s okay to take a break from it.
However, we suggest that you set yourself a reasonable deadline on this. You can’t be on your pajamas for months, thinking of how your ex dumped you. You need to rise above from the heartbreak and get back on your feet as soon as you can.
Don’t repress your feelings.
For some people, they believe that one of the most effective ways to get over a breakup is by shrugging it off—fake it ‘till you make it, they said.
Don’t go this route. Pretending will just ruin you as you’re not able to express your true feelings. Even if the breakup is amicable and that both of you are okay with separating, there’s still pain involved in there. If you bottle that frustration up, it’ll backfire in the long run and may even affect your new relationship in the future.
Seek support from family and friends.
As we’ve said above, don’t repress your feelings about the breakup. If you’re disappointed with what happened in the relationship, express it—and no we’re not talking about badmouthing your ex on social media. Instead, seek support from your trusted family and friends.
We get that you’re probably ashamed of venting out your concerns, but now’s not the right time to isolate yourself as you’re in a very vulnerable state. Also, don’t ever think that you’re a burden in any way—they love you and will be glad to help you get through this. You can also ask them for advice as to what you should do next.
Be compassionate with yourself.
Don’t beat yourself up and think that you’re the reason why the relationship ended. Breakups happen not just because of one person. Even if you’re the one who ended the relationship, it’s not entirely your fault. When a relationship has ended, it’s usually because of various issues that were too damaged to be resolved.
Also, if your partner broke up with you because of someone else, don’t ever think that there’s something lacking in you. If your ex is dating someone else, it doesn’t mean that you’re not pretty, smart, or kind enough. You’re amazing as you are and it just so happens that this person can’t appreciate it.
So instead of blaming yourself, take some time to assess the whole relationship and own the mistakes that you’ve made. Take note of those mistakes not to beat yourself up, but as a guide when going into a new relationship in the future.
Write down the negative things you’ve dealt with during the relationship.
Most people end up idealizing their past relationships during the moving-on phase. You tend to remember only the good parts of the relationship—your first date, the first joke your ex has told you, the grand gesture that they did on your birthday.
Your mind tends to cling on these feel-good memories because this is how the brain validates the decisions we made in the past. This is also the brain’s way of encouraging us to be in a relationship again. Imagine if you’ll just forget the good sides of a past relationship and only remember the negative experiences—you’ll probably remain single forever.
However, though nostalgia can encourage you to find love again, there are also some downsides from this. If you idealize the past relationship too much, thinking that your ex is this amazing person-that-got-away-because-you’re-not-that-good, it can hinder you from completely moving on. You may even try to contact your ex because of this.
With that, we suggest that you have an Ex’s BS Sheet. In this sheet, write down all the bullshit things that you had to go through from the relationship. Is your ex too insecure? Does this person control the way you dress? Is this person making fun of your hobbies? Do you hate the way he chews? Don’t you like the way she talks about your friends? Write it all down. The next time you idealize your ex again, just put out the BS sheet and read the listed traits.
Stop thinking about getting closure.
Your past relationship wouldn’t end the way romantic comedies do. Though having a heart-to-heart talk with your ex isn’t that farfetched from reality, there are times that closure isn’t just bound to happen. Let’s say the breakup ended catastrophically or your ex decided to cut all contact—would you even want to have an amicable talk with that person?
Though having closure will surely help you get over the breakup, it’s not the key to moving on. In most cases, those questions that are lingering in your mind are better off unanswered. Trust us, you can survive without knowing your ex’s side of the story.
Write a letter to your ex, but don’t send it.
If you have tons of things that you want to say to your ex, you could try writing a letter. Up to you if you want to write it traditionally or digitally.
Now, once you’re done writing your heart out, discard the letter immediately. If you’ve written it in a piece of paper, burn it ala Eliza Hamilton. If you just typed it on your laptop, you can simply delete the file. Doing this will help you vent out those bottled emotions and questions that have been lingering in your mind, without the repercussions of sending a lengthy hate mail to your ex.
Don’t turn to unhealthy coping mechanisms.
You’ve probably seen this in movies and television shows—the lead character is heartbroken and has decided to drink all night, whilst the other character stays in bed for weeks and binging on junk food.
Though it’s typical for us to seek temporary highs as a way to deal with a breakup, it’s not advisable to do so. If you think about it, how does alcohol, junk food, meaningless sex, and drugs help you get through the breakup? Is it giving you peace? Does it give a sense of clarity as to why the relationship ended? Are you becoming a better person? No, it doesn’t improve the situation at all.
Turning to unhealthy coping mechanisms will give you that temporary high. You’ll be numb from the pain and be “happy” for some time. We also strongly suggest steering away from this as you might end up becoming addicted to it.
Go for a digital detox.
The saying goes “Out of sight, out of mind” is useful when it comes to dealing with breakups. The more you don’t see your ex, the more chances you won’t be thinking of them.
With that, it’s best if you disconnect your ex from your social media accounts, in case you haven’t done this yet. Remove their pictures on your profile. Block them on all your accounts. If possible, unfriend or unfollow their friends and family members.
Blocking your ex in your digital space isn’t a sign of immaturity. It’s an acceptable way of moving on. Besides, if you’re still connected with them on social media, you’ll most likely check their profiles regularly, hurting yourself in the process.
Make a breakup playlist.
It can be anything—but we suggest making a fun breakup playlist containing songs about singlehood and the fun that it brings. If you want a different (yet masochistic) approach, you can make a playlist containing the songs you’ve sang to each other. Whatever the main genre is, create it as long as it helps you heal.
Go for some pampering.
As you heal your broken heart, self-care is everything. Indulge in activities that nourish your physical, mental, and emotional state, such as going to a spa.
Aside from releasing the tension in your body, taking a spa day also helps you treat the physical side effects of a breakup, such as acne. If possible, bring some of your friends and family for a more delightful experience.
Don’t think of ways to get them back—go back to yourself instead.
If you’re the one who got dumped on this relationship, it may be hard to accept that everything is over. You’re probably thinking of ways to rekindle the connection. You’re probably changing your overall look, investigating their new partner, or even chatting with your ex’s friends and family to get sympathy and new information.
Honestly sis, don’t do this. We get that you very much love this person, but do you deserve being in a relationship with someone who no longer loves you?
Instead of using all this energy to make your ex like you again, focus on the activities you genuinely enjoy. By doing this, you’ll become so much better if ever your ex tried to return in your life, or completely move on in case they never come back.
Never seek revenge.
It can be tempting to get revenge, especially if the breakup was messy. However, seeking revenge isn’t going to help you heal at all.
Yes, you can get even with them by posting about their cheating habits or even talk about their nasty behavior in a vlog—but would these revenge schemes bring peace in your heart? Nope? Then just cut it. Remember, living your best life is the best revenge.
Avoid going on the rebound route.
Rebounds seem like a good time– a fun way to distract yourself from the heartbreak. However, this could probably bring more harm than good in your healing process.
You see, you just got out of a committed relationship. Bits and pieces of your ex are still there, just floating around your memories. You haven’t even unpacked the baggage you brought along from the separation. In short, your mind and heart are not fully ready to be in a relationship again.
Should you decide to date while you’re still in the process of moving, you may end up hurting yourself and the other person—which is unfair on the other party, especially if they’re not aware that they’re just a rebound. Instead of doing this, use your time and energy to reflect on the relationship that just ended.
Revamp your room.
If you feel like changing the vibe of your room or decluttering your closet, go ahead and do it! Take off the memorabilia that are plastered on the walls. Have a couple photos on their nightstand? Time to put that on the trash. This is a healthy way of moving on especially if you’ve made tons of memories in your room. A new environment also invokes a brand new start.
Throw away or donate their old stuff.
Speaking of revamping your room, it’s better to donate or throw away the gifts that you got from your ex. We get that there’s still a sentimental value with these gifts but since you’ve broken up, there’s no point in keeping it anymore. These sentimental trinkets may also remind you of your ex, hindering you from completely moving on.
Spend a lot of time outside.
Trying to get over a breakup can be mentally draining. With that, it’s best to do certain activities that can help you restore your mental energy, one of which is by going outdoors. According to a recent study, people’s mental energy bounced back just by looking at pictures of nature. Now, if you’ve never tried outdoor activities before, you can start with simple strolls to the park. You can also bring your family and friends and have some bonding as well.
Get a pet!
If you are feeling a bit lonely, maybe adopting some furbabies is the way to go. According to a recent study, older adults who owned pets were 36 percent less likely to say they were lonely compared to those that didn’t have pets. Especially if you’re living alone, having pets can serve as a companion and may help you get through tough times.
However, take note that adopting a pet comes with responsibilities. Don’t just get a pet as a way to deal with your breakup. Make sure that you’re ready to take a new responsibility before getting one.
Avoid taking a drastic makeover.
Changing some aspect of your looks is normal for people who just ended a relationship. They just want a fresh start, and sometimes, cutting their hair or getting a new tattoo is their way of invoking that new beginning.
However, if you decide to do a “breakup makeover”, make sure you’re ready to own that look. Some people tend to just dye their hair in orange then regret it as soon as they saw themselves in the mirror. Also, don’t do the makeover yourselves—seek help from professionals!
Start or continue your passion projects.
Remember when you decided to stop writing that novel because you want to spend more time with your beau? Well, now that you’ve broken up, you can continue working on that again.
One of the perks of singlehood is that you got more time in your hands. Use that to your advantage and start working on new and unfinished projects. Launch that blog. Post your artworks. Do those things that keep your passion alive. Not only are you being more productive, but you’ll also be able to take off your mind from your ex.
We also suggest that you keep doing this, even when you get into a relationship again. Doing your own thing is important in a relationship, as it keeps your identity and prevents you from focusing too much on the relationship.
Have a healthier lifestyle.
Since breakups can bring a lot of stress and tension to your mind and body, one of the best ways you can do during a breakup is to have a healthier lifestyle. By eating healthy meals and exercising regularly, you’ll be able to reduce your stress, reduce the levels of your depression & anxiety, and recharge your mental energy. Not only that, being fit can help you regain that confidence that you’ve lost from the breakup.
Set realistic thoughts when reminiscing with your ex.
It’s normal to remember your ex sometimes. Your ex has been part of your life at some time so reminiscing your memories with them does happen. However, it’s important that you keep those memories realistic. By doing so, you’ll avoid idealizing the previous relationship and trying to rekindle it.
Write down the things you want in a relationship—for future use.
As you slowly reach the end of the moving-on process, take some time to write down the things that you want in a relationship. You can also write down your experiences from the previous relationship and compare it to the things that you actually want. This will help you reflect on the past relationship as well as guide you on your next relationship.
For those that are unfamiliar with the term, mindfulness is being in the present moment. If you’re incorporating mindfulness in your life, you’re being fully present in what’s actually happening and is not thinking of the past nor the future. By being mindful, we’re not wishing for our experience to be different than what it is.
Now, how is this a good way to deal with a breakup? Well, by developing mindfulness, you’ll be able to diminish your negative thoughts about your ex. Instead of dwelling on the past (ex’s memories) or worrying about the future (finding love after the breakup), mindfulness lets you focus on what’s happening right now. With that, you’ll be able to cultivate new and meaningful relationships as well as doing things that improve your well-being.
Know that it will get better over time.
If your relationship ended recently, expect it to suck. Yes, there will be pain. Yes, you’ll experience lonely nights. And yes, you’ll feel a sense of confusion.
Trust us, as time goes on, you’ll get better. As long as your turning to healthy coping mechanisms and not on temporary highs, the pain in your heart will slowly fade away. One day, you’ll just realize: Wow, that relationship did suck—but I’m okay now. Just take some time and set a realistic pace for yourself.
Moving on from a relationship is tough. It’s a transformative experience that could make or break you. It involves a lot of pain, confusion, self-berating thoughts, and unnecessary drama. Most of us are clueless as to what we should do, that we often succumb to temporary pleasure just to numb the pain.
But always remember, seeking highs just to numb that excruciating pain in your heart will never help you get over a breakup. Instead of doing things that just feel good, do things that nourish your heart, mind, body, and soul. Keep on moving forward!