So, your relationship just ended. The pain is paralyzing, and it seems like it’ll be impossible to recover from the trauma of getting dumped (or having to hurt someone). We know because we’ve been there, too. We completely understand, and we’re here to validate your feelings. There’s nothing worse than somebody telling you to simply "move on."
Don't worry, we’re here to help: We compiled a list of practical things you can do to really get over your breakup, and reclaim your life. Good luck, ladies! Hang in there—things are bound to pick up!
1. Throw yourself a pity party.
Give yourself some time to grieve and mourn the loss of your relationship. Put aside a week at most to simply just cry it all out without restraint. The pity party may be the hardest part, but you’ll feel a much-needed sense of relief after releasing all of that bottled-up negative energy. A lot of intense emotions surface after a breakup, so it’s necessary to acknowledge those feelings to resume your soon-to-be fun and fabulous single life. P.S. Ice cream helps, too.
2. Listen to music.
Put on those earphones and escape into the world of empowering lyrics and catchy melodies. Create a playlist that will psych you to be your best self without the help of a man. Soon enough, you’ll start believing the lyrics and feel a tiny bit better—and every little bit counts, right?
Click here for some girl power tunes to turn your frown upside down.
Warning: Steer clear of Adele! Listening to “Someone Like You” would probably make you feel worse about your breakup, so it’s better to lay off the soulful singer for now, at least.
3. Read books.
Try Bossypants by Tina Fey or Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me by Mindy Kaling. Both are laugh-out-loud books written by very relatable women. There are also hilarious reads about breakups—we recommend It’s Called a Breakup Because it’s Broken by Greg Behrendt and Amiira Ruotola-Behrendt. In a humorous way, this book addresses common concerns of recently single women, and gives real advice on how to get your life back on track.
4. Keep a journal.
You can’t always talk to your girlfriends about what happened between you and your ex (they have lives too!), so it’s helpful to keep a journal as an outlet:
- If you have the urge to contact him, write him a letter in your journal instead.
- Create a list of things you liked about him, and then another list of things you hate about him. As you write more, the list of things you hate about him will outweigh the list of things you like about him. (One weighty thing you should put on the “hate list” is the fact that he let you go.)
When you physically see all the things you didn’t like about him, you may begin to realize that you weren’t as compatible as you once thought.
5. Get a mini-makeover.
Get out of those sweats and baggy t-shirts. Here’s your chance to reinvent yourself! You can finally get that cute short haircut that you’ve always wanted, but couldn’t get because he loved your long locks. Dye your hair! Paint your nails! Wear a bold red lip! (But, hold off on that tattoo you saw on Pinterest!) There are endless ways to revamp your look to celebrate your newfound freedom. Look at yourself in the mirror after your mini-makeover, and tell yourself how awesome you look. Once you project a confident and sexy you, people will notice, and you’ll start feeling the self-assurance inside, too.
Give your home a mini-makeover as well. Chances are, you and your ex hung out a lot at home, so rearrange some furniture and toss out all the memorabilia from your relationship. You can put all of your keepsakes in a box as a souvenir from that part of your life.
6. Take a trip.
Run away, but come back. If you can, go somewhere far and just immerse yourself in a different place. Schedule your trip when you’ve recovered a little from the breakup, so you can actually enjoy the different activities on your adventure without thinking about your ex. Do things that you can’t do at home. Try a new cuisine. Climb a mountain. Go sailing. Go to the local bar, and meet new people. On your trip, you’ll see what else the world has to offer, which can be more fulfilling and exciting than what your ex offered you in the relationship. After some time away, come back home feeling relaxed, refreshed, and inspired.
7. Set goals.
After a breakup, it’s time to rearrange your plans. Admit it—he was part of your hopes and dreams. Now that he’s gone, you have to ask yourself what you really want to do with your life. What are you passionate about? What will make you happy again? Write down everything you want to do. Once you’ve completed a goal, cross it off, and feel incredibly accomplished!
Each time you cross something off, add a new goal. Your goal can be as simple as learning how to bake the perfect chocolate chip cookies. It can also be as big as starting a new career. Keep your list of goals long, which will keep you busy and keep your mind off your ex. Setting targets will keep you focused on your own personal growth.
8. Jump into something new.
Your ex is no longer sucking up all of your free time, so you can now take up a new fun activity. If food is your thing, join a cooking class. If you’re a music-lover, dust off that guitar and actually learn how to play it. Join a club, take a class, or apply for an internship. There are many ways to get involved in a new community while doing what you love. If you take this final step seriously, you can turn your life around. Who knows, maybe your newfound activity can become the new career that you’re absolutely in love with.
The time it takes to get over your breakup ultimately depends on the length and intensity of your relationship. We know it’s scary to venture into the world alone, but think of it as the stepping stone to the life you’ve always envisioned. Your ex wasn’t “The One,” but “The One” is out there, and you won’t find him by dwelling on your previous relationship. Live in the present, and go start your new life!