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10 Things You MUST Do After a Breakup

10 Things You MUST Do After a Breakup

A breakup can seem like the end of the world, even when nothing huge changes. Here is our best advice for what to do after a breakup in order to heal.

Some romances end in betrayal, others end with distance. Regardless of your circumstance, breakups are the pinnacle of defeated loss. Unlike death, there is no forced goodbye, only a chosen one. It may feel utterly impossible to continue on without your best friend or lover, but you must take action to learn how to grow securely on your own. Here are 10 steps that MUST address when you’re figuring out what to do after a breakup:

1. Accept

The person that you thought was your entire present and future is now your past. Your bond with this person, though it may have been beautifully tender, does not exist anymore. Repeat this harsh fact to yourself until you believe it. The more time you allot yourself to linger in the past, the deeper your wounds will get. Even your memories with the person will grow tainted. Denial is a mental state that feeds a nonexistent focal point, and it is stagnant, bitter kind of energy that cannot function past fiction.


2. Delete

The first thing anyone will tell you when you ask them what to do after a break up is to clean house. You used to post photos of you and your ex to show the world how lucky and in love the two of you were. Those photos also highlighted your best moments as a couple. It’s not fair to you or the person you were with to have to continue dwelling on that past by keeping photos of the two of you on social media. Remove empty images from your life. Stop searching for meaning that has already expired. You’ll find  peace of mind in admitting to the world that some things exist better in memory. In fact, toss their things that you keep boxed, too.

3. Unfollow

Social media conveniently enables us to keep in touch with whomever, wherever. When attempting to separate yourself from a person, it’s jarring to see what they’re up to, especially when you’re not a part of that life anymore. Unfollowing an ex becomes a matter that isn’t as immature or ill-willed as people presume. The only thing it proves is acceptance of facts, and following through with your own dedication to continue on. You owe it to yourself to not give in to what’s past.


4. Pause

Even in the loneliness you feel (or revenge you wish to take), don’t ever trick yourself into thinking it’s okay to use other people. A relationship that ended (even in cheating) should be mourned and evaluated before pursuing a different one. Rebounds provide temporary comfort but loads of self-loathing because ultimately, rebounds don’t provide you with adequate time to heal and find direction with yourself. Shouldn’t you know better than to rely on assurance from someone else? Foster that bond with yourself first, and be attentive to guarding it.


5. Redefine

Animals aren’t the only territorial beings. Humans are, too. It doesn’t take much more than driving past a familiar place to let the memories of who was there, and what was felt like overwhelm you. Wake up. Realize that just because you once explored and read together at your favorite bookstore with your ex doesn’t mean that bookstore should be off limits for you. Go back, and read alone. Make new memories at the old places you’ve been to. Don’t let someone’s ghost stop you from enjoying something, or let their memories trap you from places. When considering what to do after a breakup, it’s also important to consider what to do in spite of a breakup. Making new memories is a big part of moving on. 

6. Reflect

Mull over the bad, not the good! Revisiting memories where you were with someone who made you feel on top of the world is toxic when that is no longer true. Evaluate the facts and not the emotions of what occurred between you and your ex – you’re guaranteed to find a seed to learn from. Remember that nothing is ever only one person’s fault, and recognize that even though a breakup might seem like it was completely the other person’s doing, there were actions of yours that led to the breakup, too. Figure out what you should fix for yourself, and what to do after a breakup to help yourself become a better person. Don’t fix anything for them. You can’t change other people. You can only change your own actions.


7. Buy

If the lingerie resting in your drawer makes you think about all those perfectly hazy times in bed, toss them. Your body is no longer shared with your ex. It’s tempting to desire reuniting with a person because of all the good sex you had, but that leads to emptiness if the only connection you have with someone you were once so personal with is on physical terms. Forget the pillow talk, and buy some new lingerie that your ex will never have touched.

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8. Reconnect

The special thing about friends and family is that we don’t hold them to the same all-or-nothing expectations we create for our romantic partners. There’s less stress in these relationships because of that. Most of the people you put on pause while your attention was on your partner will recognize their role in supporting you. Resume and deepen your appreciation for these supporters, without fear of falling into another burn. Hold them even tighter the next time you approach a new relationship. Choose them simply because they choose you, despite all the changes life brings. And trust me, your mom knows exactly what to do after a breakup.


9. Continue

Certain things that are integral to who you are, like your love for a triple shot chai tea latte, shouldn’t change just because they became things your ex ended up enjoying, too. Don’t think that the parts of you they praised, like your talent, patience or wittiness are reduced simply because the relationship is over. You are still all of those things, and now more – you’re wiser, more independent, and better aware. Respect yourself by not authorizing your identity to be stripped by someone’s absence.

10. Build

Grappling with pain from loss is excruciating, and seems nonviable at times. If you can rework your outcome as a mistaken investment, instead of as a total trashed loss, you’ll register that there’s work that needs to be done to clean the mess up. When you’re considering what to do after a breakup, consider a hobby! This may mean harboring an outlet, such as songwriting or hiking or baking, to deal with the aftermath. Even in the horror of a mistake, it’s perfectly possible and permissible to thrive.


What is your best advice for what to do after a breakup? Leave it in the comment section!