You’re smart and strong and like to think you have common sense to spare. So, why are you still texting someone you know you shouldn’t be? Every time you pick up your phone, you feel a pit of dread in your stomach. You’re well aware that nothing good can come from your interactions but you feel powerless to change your behavior. Don’t worry, we’ve got your back. Here’s how to stop texting someone when you know it’s time to cut the cord.
People you shouldn’t be texting under any circumstances
- Your exes HELLO! You ended your relationship for a reason. No, you can’t be friends with your ex, at least not right now. Going no contact is really the only way forward.
- Toxic people Doesn’t matter if this is a colleague, a family member, whatever. Toxic people should have no place in your life. Anyone who brings nothing but drama and bad vibes to your life is not someone you should be texting.
- Narcissists People who think they’re the center of the universe don’t belong in yours. No good can come from these interactions. Don’t have them. It’s time to finally say good riddance.
- Fair-weather friends Ain’t nobody got time for that! Life is short and your time is precious. The last thing you want to waste it on is texting someone who is only there for the good times and dumps you during the bad ones. Do people still say “Bye, Felicia?” Because seriously, bye.
How to stop texting someone you know you’re better off without
- Block their number. If you don’t want to receive texts from them anymore, consider blocking their number. In a few taps, they can no longer contact you. Doesn’t that feel good?
- Delete their contact info. Remove their contact info from your phone to make it more difficult to contact them. Of course, this won’t work if you’ve memorized their number, but who does that anymore?
- Delete previous conversations. Erase previous text conversations to avoid revisiting them. We’ve all been there before, scrolling back through sentimental old conversations and convincing ourselves we’re in love. Pfft.
- Find a replacement habit. Find something else to do when you feel the urge to text them. Try going for a run, reading a book, baking, etc. However you can think to fill your time, do it.
- Stay busy. Keep yourself occupied with other activities so you have less time to think about texting them.
- Seek support. Talk to a friend or therapist about the situation and get their support and advice. There’s no shame in this! They can give you skills and tools to help break the chain.
- Set boundaries. Communicate clearly with the person that you no longer want to text with and set firm boundaries.
- Avoid triggers. Identify situations or places that trigger the urge to text them and avoid them. Easier said than done, but it’s worth a try.
- Focus on the negative. Remind yourself of the negative aspects of the relationship or reasons why you don’t want to talk to them.
- Practice some self-care. Take care of yourself physically and mentally by exercising, eating well, and practicing relaxation techniques.
- Take a break from social media. If you find yourself constantly checking their social media, take a break from it altogether. You won’t die without access to your Insta or TikTok feeds.
- Redirect your energy. Channel your energy into something positive, such as a new hobby or volunteer work.
- Practice mindfulness. Use mindfulness techniques, such as deep breathing or meditation, to stay grounded and reduce the urge to text them.
- Set a time limit. If you must text them, set a time limit and stick to it.
- Seek professional help. If you’re struggling to stop texting someone, consider seeking professional help from a therapist or counselor.
Why it’s so hard to cut off contact
- You’re addicted to them. Texting someone can become a habit, and the dopamine hit we get from receiving a message can be addictive. Sometimes it doesn’t even feel like something you want to do. Instead, it’s something you do subconsciously. When you stop texting them, you immediately start feeling withdrawal.
- You’re experiencing FOMO. You may worry that if you stop texting this particular someone, you’ll miss out on important information or events. That’s likely not true at all (and if it is, who cares?) but it’s enough to keep you tethered to them.
- You’re lonely. If you’re feeling lonely, texting someone can provide a sense of connection and social interaction, even if it’s not a healthy relationship. Remember that there are other ways to feel less alone that don’t involve compromising your happiness and self-respect.
- You’re feeling nostalgic. While you may have fond memories of the relationship or feel nostalgic for the good times, stop. If the relationship was toxic or unhealthy overall, you’re looking back with rose-colored glasses. It’s time to face reality.
- You have a sense of guilt. You may feel guilty for wanting to cut off contact. That’s especially true if the other person is struggling with their own issues or emotions. As a matter of fact, you’re not responsible for anyone else’s emotions. You’re only responsible for yourself.
- You have an emotional attachment to them. You may have developed an emotional attachment to them, but come on. You’ve gotten over people before and you can do it again. It may suck now, but you’ll feel better afterward.
- You hope things will change. You may believe that the other person can change, and you don’t want to give up on them. However, chances are you’ll just stay stuck in the same toxic cycle forever. After all, doing the same things over and over and expecting new results is the definition of insanity, is it not?
- You don’t want to upset them. You may worry that if you stop texting them, it will lead to a confrontation or uncomfortable conversation. Oh well! You can’t go through life pleasing everyone. If they get mad, they’ll get glad again. That’s what my mom used to say!
- You haven’t found closure. You may feel like you haven’t received closure on the relationship, and you keep texting them in the hopes of getting closure. However, this is a terrible reason to stick around. Chances are, they’ll never give you answers that satisfy you. You’re better off walking away now.
- You have low self-esteem. When your self-worth isn’t firmly cemented and feel like you don’t deserve better, it’s easy to get caught up. You might worry that you won’t be able to find someone else who will treat you better. That’s true even if this person doesn’t treat you very well at all.
These reasons can make it difficult to stop texting someone, but it’s important to remember that it’s possible to break the habit and move on to healthier relationships.