After breaking up with someone you loved, even if you were
the one who decided to end it and don't feel rejected, you
still feel a sense of loss, and you ache for the love you
were getting that's now gone. All these feelings have to
work themselves out of your system. It's a process you must
go through, similar to grieving or getting over an
addiction, and some researchers say that it can take up to
half as long as the relationship lasted.
However, just as there are ways to make the "In Love"
feeling happen (see "Why People Love"), there are ways to
encourage the "Out Of Love" feeling as well. Here are some
proven guidelines for helping you regain a normal emotional
state in the shortest period of time:
- 1. Make a clean break
- Quit seeing your ex, totally. You've become addicted to
their love, and the only way to recover is cold turkey. If
you keep seeing him or her, it's like a drug addict begging
for "just one more" hit. Don't call. Don't "just be
friends." Because each time you get close enough to your
ex to get the good parts of what you once had, you'll get
the bad parts too.
- 2. Write a last love letter
- There are always so many things you still want to say to
your ex. Write a letter that says them all and then don't
send it. Put it away. Just writing it will make you feel
better. You'll be relieved of carrying around the thoughts
in your mind and free yourself for new and better things.
- 3. Make a "hate list"
- When you break up, you often forget the bad times and
only yearn for the good ones. Before you forget, write down
every nasty mean thing your ex ever did so that you can look
at the list whenever you start to feel nostalgic for your
old romance. (Don't send this, either...)
- 4. Use "thought-stopping" to combat sad thoughts
- If you think, "If only I could get (him or her) back,
everything would be all right." Or, "I just wish I could
see (him or her) one more time." These thoughts will only
frustrate you and make you sad. Stop the unhappy thoughts
by keeping a rubber band around your wrist. When you have
the obsessive thoughts about your ex, snap the rubber band
as soon as the thought starts to happen. That way you'll
begin to associate the sad thoughts with the aversion
therapy you're using. After a while, the thoughts will stop
by themselves as soon as they start.
- 5. Avoid sad associations
- Don't listen to sad songs on the radio. Skip the
stations that remind you of your ex. Listen to music
without words for a while. Don't go to the places you went
with your ex. Put away all the pictures and momentos that
remind you of your ex. Put away the gifts you got and even
rearrange your furniture or stay with a friend for awhile if
there are too many sad memories at home. Stay away from
friends of your ex and avoid seeking gossip about your ex.
Whatever you hear, you won't feel any better.
- 6. Find someone new
- Force yourself to date. Don't be a recluse. Read "When He/She's Left You -- Coping" for
specific techniques which will help pull you out of your
depressed state. I know you're not ready to get serious
about someone else yet, but it's important to get out and
get circulating, and a new man or woman in your life will be
a pleasant distraction. But resist the temptation to cry on
their shoulder, no matter how sympatico they seem. Don't
even start to tell the new person about your ex and how bad
it was. Just enjoy the new relationship.
Related Keywords: Letting Go, Love Addiction
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