How To Get Over A Breakup And Actually Leave Your Ex In The Past

Love, Heartbreak

When you can’t stop thinking about the person who broke your heart and you’re struggling with how to get over a breakup, start taking deliberate steps to heal your heart and move on. Trust us it’s better than opening another pint of ice cream and looking through your ex’s Facebook feed.

Falling in love is the easy part of a relationship. It doesn’t matter if you’ve been with someone for 3 months, 3 years, or 3 decades, getting over a breakup is hard. For some people, the pain is so intense it’s physical.

Heartbreak can feel like it is the end of the world, so it’s important to remind your brain that the world is not stopping. The sun will continue to rise and set, your heart will continue to beat, your breath will still expand and contract your lungs. You are going to be okay.

A breakup can lead you to a much-needed breakthrough if you are willing to grow through the pain to discover a new and improved version of yourself.

Ultimately, when your heart breaks it’s not broken for good. It actually breaks open to hold more love. Here’s how to get over a breakup, expand your heart, and actually leave your ex in the past.

Feel All Of Your Feelings

How to get over a breakup when the pain feels unbearable? It may seem counter-intuitive because the pain of heartbreak can be intense, but the only way out of your pain is to go through it to the other side. Rather than go numb or attempt to shove down all the icky emotions, feel all of your feelings.

Your mind will play tricks on you and tell you that you will never feel happy again. This is a lie. The one thing you can count on is that your feelings will change.

You won’t feel bad forever so instead of trying to avoid all those crappy feelings, dig in and allow yourself to feel them. Be angry or sad. Allow yourself to cry and scream. Even spend time feeling sorry for yourself. All of your feelings are appropriate.

Eventually, you’ll find that your feelings will come and go like waves crashing into the shoreline. They will recede and you will soon discover moments of relief, spaces during your day where you feel somewhat normal. And these moments will blossom and multiply and soon you’ll be feeling better more often than not.

Allow Yourself To Grieve

A big part of knowing how to get over a breakup is to acknowledge the loss. Instead of trying to find a way to get him back, or running over what was said during the breakup, or wishing things were different, just book out time in your calendar to grieve.

Obsessing over the details of the relationship and the breakup will only keep you stuck. You won’t be able to move on because your brain is looking for a solution to your pain. There is no logical solution to your heartbreak.

Just like losing the big game, not getting a job you had really wanted, a breakup is just another loss. Remind your brain that you’ve been through other losses and recovered. The pain you are feeling is a natural response to loss.

Grief is a natural response to a loss. You had hope that this relationship would last. It is appropriate to mourn the loss of the life you thought you had, and now your life is changing despite your desires.

You want to begin the process of thinking about the relationship in the past tense by allowing yourself to mourn the loss. The two of you were partners, and you used to be together.

How to get over a breakup when you are not ready to move on? Acknowledge your loss and begin the process of mourning.

Set A Clear Boundary

Part of knowing how to get over a breakup is taking steps that move you towards healing your heart so you can release your ex and move on. Setting a clear boundary with him will hasten your healing process.

By setting a clear boundary you are exercising your right to protect yourself. You may want to make a clear request that your ex not contact you in any way. This gives you the gift of space and time so that you can process the separation, grieve, and move on.

Setting a boundary is also an act of self-care. Your heartache is a wound that requires healing. Every time you have contact with your ex it is like you are tearing off the scab of that wound and slowing down the healing process.

You may have to have contact with your ex that you cannot avoid. Raising children, dealing with a joint business, or settling finances may require that you communicate with your ex.

Limit all communication with him to the absolute necessities. If you have to continue to communicate it is important that you set clear rules about how/when/where. Don’t ever feel like you have to respond immediately if your ex contacts you. Wait before you say or do something that will re-engage the two of you.

The desire to reach out to your ex because you crave the emotional intimacy that the two of you used to share should be avoided. You also have no obligation to respond to your ex if he is reaching out to you to see how you are doing. These types of conversations may seem innocuous but they will keep you from healing your heart and moving on with your life.

Allow yourself to feel angry about the breakup if it will be put to productive use. Setting and keeping a clear boundary is an excellent place to channel anger so you can release your ex and move on.

How to get over a breakup when you have to continue communicating with your ex? Set clear boundaries and take care of yourself first.

Disengage On All Social Media

Before mobile phones and social media, it was common to drive by an ex’s house or workplace after a breakup to see what he’s up to. Was he home? Was he at work? Protect yourself and your heart by disengaging and blocking your ex on social media.

How to get over a breakup when your mind can’t stop wondering what your ex is up to? Just say no to social media stalking!

It won’t do you any good to see what your ex is doing (or not doing). Whatever you see there will not assist you in getting over the breakup.

Control Your Mind To Heal Your Heart

Most of the thoughts that you have during any given day are habitual. You think something because you trained your mind to think about it and eventually, it became a habit that occurs on autopilot.

Break the habit of thinking about your ex by disengaging from the internal conversation. When thoughts of your ex enter your mind, say to yourself, “Cancel. Cancel. Cancel,” and turn your attention to something on your to-do list.

Begin a practice of controlling your thoughts. Visualization and meditation are great tools to be in the present moment which is the only place you have any power. Yesterday is over and tomorrow isn’t here yet, so focus your mind in the present moment.

Resist the urge to go over and over the relationship and the breakup in your mind. Also, stay away from imagining a future full of gloom and doom. If you’re going to imagine your future, picture one where you are happy and loved by a person whose face is unknown to you yet.

Going through a breakup is really difficult if you continue to put off the reality that it’s over. Instead of imagining how you might win him back, stay focused on healing your heart.

As cruel as it may sound, we want you to kill the hope that there may be a future with your ex. To get over a breakup and actually leave your ex in the past you have to heal past him. It is most important to create new daily habits that do not include him in it.

Hoping for reconciliation only drags out the pain of the breakup. If he discovers that he blew it and wants you back, you can deal with that if that actually happens. Entertaining a fantasy only extends the pain of the breakup. Deal with the present moment only and as you look to a future without your ex know with every fiber of your being that you will find someone even better suited for you.

Discover The Golden Nugget

After you’ve had some time to grieve and you’ve stepped into the space where you know you’ll be okay without your ex, it’s time to do the deep healing to release your ex for good.

There is a point in the future where you will feel grateful for the relationship you had with your ex and how it helped you grow. You can speed up this learning by taking intentional steps to find the Golden Nugget of Learning.

You’ll want to spend some time journaling about the relationship and what you learned from the experience. Maybe the relationship patterns with your ex were unhealthy and you need to discover how to change the pattern for good. Or your ex could have been instrumental in motivating you to improve your communication skills.

Take time to discover the most important nugget from the relationship. Learning this lesson will release you from your desire to get back with your ex. You’ll know you have it when you begin to feel gratitude for the whole experience.

Once you mine the relationship for the golden nugget you will no longer pine for your ex because the attachment to the relationship will be severed.

How to get over a breakup and become a better person in the process? Find the Golden Nugget of Learning and release your ex for good.

Practice Forgiveness

There is no such thing as a perfect person. Everyone is perfectly imperfect. You love someone for their uniqueness and often times it’s their imperfections that leave an imprint on your heart.

Opening up to forgiveness for your ex is another way to put him/her in your past and move on for good. Forgiveness ultimately is for you. You get to be free! Forgiving your ex does not mean you ever have to have contact with him. You can do your forgiveness work on your own.

When you forgive your ex for hurting you, you aren’t excusing the behavior. You are releasing yourself from holding onto the anger and resentment that is poisoning your happiness and joy. Staying angry about your ex and becoming cynical about love isn’t hurting anyone but you.

Opening up to forgive your ex allows you to learn and grow about yourself and become a better version of yourself forevermore.

You may also have to forgive yourself for any mistakes you made in the relationship. Beating yourself up isn’t helping you move on, nor does it make you a better person because you are carrying guilt about your behavior.

Forgive yourself for any mistakes and release feelings of guilt and shame. Resolve to become a better person in your next relationship.

How to get over a break-up and open your heart to more love? Forgive yourself and your ex for the fact that the two of you are human and bound to make mistakes.

You may feel like the pain of a breakup will last forever and you’ll never find that kind of love again. Take an intentional approach to your heartbreak and you’ll discover that your next relationship is healthier, more loving, and more fulfilling than any of your past relationships.

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Orna and Matthew Walters have been soulmate coaches for over a decade and helped thousands of readers create long-lasting love. Download a complimentary copy of their ebook, Recognizing Mr. Right, along with a guided program on self-acceptance from their website.

This article was originally published at Reprinted with permission from the author.