Remove ex from all social media, immediately.
No matter how petty you think it looks, delete your ex from Facebook and any other social medium that you use, right away. This will help you avoid the inevitable temptation to check out his/her profile down the line, after you’ve been drinking, or any other time you may be feeling vulnerable. You can perhaps become friends again down the line, but it is important to completely rid yourself of the other person. Remember: the only thing worse than drunk texting an ex, is drunk Facebooking an ex. Proves you’ve been stalking AND gives the other person the upper hand in the breakup!
Ask your friends for their brutal honesty.
Your friends are powerful resources during a breakup. They have witnessed your arguments, heard you vent time and time again, and have had a front-row seat to the trials and tribulations of your relationship. They will tell you how it really went down, and likely make you feel better about the breakup. Ask your friends to tell you bad things about your ex. Immature? Perhaps. But effective. You will feel better during a tumultuous breakup, and the wise words of your friends may prevent you from relationship relapse!
Avoid all contact.
Delete phone numbers. Block email contact. If your ex tries to contact you, resist the urge. If you give in even a little, you will set yourself back enormously, and then have to go through the healing stages once again. I used to give my friends my phone at the beginning of breakups (especially if we were going out for drinks), making them promise to hide it and refuse to return it to me, no matter how much I would beg! Because as we all can relate, a few drinks in and suddenly a simple text message seems harmless. Until the next day rolls around.
Throw away mementos.
Concert tickets, letters, cards, dried flowers, small gifts…rid yourself of them, all of them! Go for a complete catharsis. During a particularly horrible breakup I had a ceremonial picture-burning tradition once a week with my roommates, slowly making my way through every picture I could find of my ex and I, congratulating myself on making it through the breakup week by week. And let me tell you…there’s something sadistically gratifying about watching your ex-lover’s face burn to a crisp.
Remember the bad times.
You obviously broke up for many justified reasons. But in the beginning stages of a breakup, it’s easy and common to idealize a past relationship and idealize your ex. Suddenly all the things that split you apart become secondary to all the reasons that you loved this person. But never forget the fights, their annoying tendencies, the lack of trust, whatever it may be: reflect on the bad times. Whenever you get a pang of nostalgia, make a list of cons and reflect on these heavily. Everything happens for a reason, and if you’re open to it (and choose to move on from your ex – because it is a choice), you will find someone with whom the bad times are few and far between.
Write a letter to your ex.
Right after the final breakup of my life, I went on a weeklong vacation with my family. On the 14-hour car ride, I wrote a 14-hour letter to my ex. It started off cordial and nicely explained the reasons I left, and a few hours in, the letter became an explosive platform for all of my relationship woes. Initially I had intended to send the letter, but after it became a notebook’s worth of ranting, this letter functioned as my means of private healing. After writing, I felt immensely better. I had closure and emotional relief. Letter-writing is a very powerful tool of ex-related therapy.
If you sit and wallow, you will feel worse. Even though the last thing that you want to do is attend a social function, it is essential. Be busier than you were previously. Join new clubs, force yourself to go to everything that you can. Even if you are just getting out of the house to go to the movies solo, do it!! You will soon be forming new memories and new habits, and the old ones will inevitably be replaced.
Rebuild your ego.
Even though online dating still freaks me out a bit, it certainly provides a huge ego-boost. We all need a little ego stroking post-breakup, and creating an online dating profile does just that. Once you sign up, you will be swarmed with flattering messages from potential suitors. It feels good. And then it feels creepy. But when you’ve just been dumped, or just did the dumping, you need to feel good. So go with it.
Whatever you do, make sure that your next mate is better than your former mate. Upgrade, upgrade, upgrade. Ensure that your new lover does not have any of the irritating qualities of your ex, and heck, it won’t hurt if he/she is more physically beautiful as well. Because rest assured, your ex will somehow get wind of your new significant other, and if the new mate is well-liked and attractive, vengeance will be yours.
Remember: time cures all.
The only assured way to get over your ex is to let time run its course. How often this old adage turns out to be true, with every broken relationship, and yet it is so easy to forget. One month from now, you will be in a better place. Two months from now, you will have established a new routine without your ex. Three months from now, you will be accustomed to your new routine. Four months from now, your ex will be but a distant memory, so on and so forth. Let time do your bidding for you. Time always heals.