Ex Problems: A Step-By-Step Guide To Getting Over A Breakup


Time to let go. Photo: iStock.com

Here you are: the Mayor of Dumpsville. Youve renamed your apartment Heartbreak Hotel on Foursquare. You need relief and you need it FAST. Put down that gallon of ice cream: heres how to hit the express lane on the way to Destination Recovery.

Get rid of his/her stuff. You cant recover while staring at photos, personal items and gifts! Send it back and clean house (UPS and FedEx are genius for this.) Things you want to keep should be given to a trusted friend for safekeeping. Pets should be given a new collar/leash/fish tank.

Cease all contact with your ex. Drunk dialing/emailing/texting/sexting makes you look pathetic. Remove their contact information, including (but not limited to) phone numbers, emails, pagers, etc. Even if a divorce and children are in the picture, its not an excuse: let the attorneys handle as much as possible.

Return all friends to their rightful owners. Yes, it sucks but its true. Even though his best friend or her sister loved you to death, all bets are off immediately after a breakup. Everyone takes away what they brought to the relationship. Friends made in common during the relationship should remain neutral and not dragged into the mess.

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Practice vacation therapy. Its how Stella got her groove back and, honestly, it works. This is the perfect time to go a girls weekend, guys golf retreat or a solo yoga experience. It might save you hundreds of dollars in therapy/alcohol/medication/legal bills.

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Spoil yourself with a solo vacay. Photo: iStock.com

Accept that closure is an illusion. Ladies and gentlemen, here it is: did you break up? Yes? The case is closed. It doesnt matter why it ended because, bottom line, its over. People who ask for closure secretly just want validation of their worst fears of rejectionand if they push for it, theyll get it. Please save your dignity and move on.

Breakup with your routine.
You had a favorite route to work or a favorite spot that was your place. Walking past it or visiting it is asking for an uncomfortable run-in and/or an onslaught of memories. Change your route to work, get a new coffee spot and find a new after-work spot so you can meet new people and continue healing. Dont argue with me. Cede the territory.

Designate an ass-kicker. Everyone has that one friend that will let you cry only for so long before they tell you the truth: get your life back together. Reward this person with a five-star restaurant dinner when youre back to your old self again.

Exercise. Regular exercise gets serotonin moving toward your brain. Youll also burn off the results of your tearful junk food binge.

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Breaking a sweat on the trails will get you out of your breakup rut. Photo: iStock.com

Find a confidence-builder. Everyone has one thing (or more) at which they excel so if you perform this activity often youll feel like a rock star. If you dont know what this is, discover it. It might open up a whole new world.

Write it down. Burn it up. Ok, so youre still upset. Take pen to paper (no electronic remnants) and write it all down. Rage, plot some useless revenge strategy, get truly medieval on their ass and then take it to a secure, fireproof location and light it up. Fire has a cleansing property to it and will help you release negative energy. Repeat as necessary.

NO breakup sex with your ex. The concept of returning to the source of pain for more of it is an exercise in self-loathing. DO NOT sleep with your ex. Youre prolonging the inevitable and flushing your self-respect every time you do it. Whatever drove you apart is still there post-orgasm along with two new additions: shame and regret.

Avoid negative people. Nagging relatives, nosy co-workers and frenemies should be shut down quickly. Take a vacation from these people while youre healing. Its probably time to set some boundaries with these people anyway.

Expect setbacks. Even though you have this list and intend to follow everything to the letter, youre going to screw one or every one of these up at some point. Just accept that setbacks are part of recovery and resolve not to make that mistake again.

Ease back into dating. Heres how youll know youre ready to date again: if you have to ask yourself Am I ready to date again? you arent. It should be organic and on your terms.

Print this little window of hope on your fridge and follow these simple rules. You should be back on your feet sooner than usual and you might even be in better shape next time.

Kristin Booker is a fashion, beauty and lifestyle writer in New York City and has contributed to such publications as Marie Claire, Running With Heels, YourTango, SHEfinds, Daily Makeover and Ebony/Jet. She is also the creator and editor of Fashion.Style.Beauty, a fashion and beauty blog.

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