It’s Over, So Get Your Act Together & Do These 10 Things So You Can Move On

Splitting up with someone you care about is never easy, and trying to pick yourself up when you feel like you’re drowning in your own misery can feel nearly impossible. But after the initial shock of the breakup passes by, it’s time to figure out your next steps to get on the path to feeling better. If you do these things after your relationship ends, you’ll be on the right track to happiness in no time:

  1. Let go of the idea of being friends. No matter who broke up with who, staying in touch is dangerous territory. Sure, we’d all love to live in a world where exes can immediately transform from lovers to best friends but that’s not realistic. Trying to stay in touch could do you some real emotional damage. You might think that you should hold onto hope even if there’s even the tiniest chance of you two getting back together. While you’re clinging to that ridiculous notion, all that’ll happen is that you’ll get to watch him move on with woman after woman after woman.
  2. Delete his number. Drunken text messages begging for him back at 4 a.m. on a Sunday morning won’t do you any favors. You’ll simply wake up the next day with a terrible headache and a wave of shame washing over you. To avoid this issue, you absolutely need to get rid of his number. While you’re at it, delete him from all your social media accounts, too.
  3. Figure out who you are alone. I’m not going to sugarcoat it — being single for the first time in ages will screw with your head. According to one study, a romantic breakup can affect your self-concept. What that means is that you may see yourself in a whole new light and struggle figuring out who you are without your partner. This identity crisis may sound like a nightmare, but it could mark a new start for you. Now’s your chance to figure out who you really are when you’re alone. Rather than using your relationship to define your character, it’s time to stand on your own two feet.
  4. Avoid getting a drastic makeover. One of the riskiest (and often worst) things many women do during post-breakup drama is to make a huge change to their appearance. It’s natural to want to mark this new era of your life with a crazy haircut or a new tattoo, but hold fire just a second. You’re emotional AF right now and probably not thinking straight. You don’t want to look back at pictures of yourself six months from now and regret making such a big decision.
  5. Spend time with your friends and family. When we’re all loved up, it’s easy to neglect the people that matter the most to us. Your friends and family have been by your side through thick and thin. Instead of trying to jump into another relationship with the next guy you meet, focus on the other relationships in your life. Creating strong bonds with the people nearest to you will help you understand that a romantic relationship can’t make or break you.
  6. Remember that your feelings will pass. You’re screwed up just now, but it won’t last forever. Your feelings of anger and bitterness are not a permanent state of being. Don’t trust your emotions at the moment, because they’ll wreak havoc on your life. Instead, you have to let them process. Cry. Scream. Shout. Punch every pillow in your house. Do whatever you need to in the privacy of your own home, but do it all remembering that you’ll feel better before you know it.
  7. Don’t you dare seek revenge. Revenge may be sweet at the time, but it quickly turns sour and leaves a bad taste in your mouth. When someone hurts you, it’s natural to want to inflict pain back onto them. In the heat of the breakup, you may conjure up a million ways you could damage this guy both physically and emotionally. But in the end, you should always let karma do your dirty work so you don’t end up with a guilty conscience or an arrest record.
  8. Learn from your mistakes. When a relationship ends, you may spend your time reminiscing about all the things the guy did wrong. But the truth is that the death of a romance is rarely one person’s fault. You likely screwed things up in as many ways as he did. Take a little time to reflect on your actions and be honest with yourself. What would you have done differently? How could you have made things work? Figure out the answers to these questions to help yourself get some closure and help your next relationship turn out better than the last.
  9. Don’t try to ‘win’ the breakup. Breakups aren’t games, and you can’t win at them. It’s not about who moves on first or who looks the best when you see each other on the street. None of that matters at all. He’s probably not competing with you right now. The moment you stop trying to win, you can concentrate on making yourself happy for YOU rather than to get back at him.
  10. Focus on making yourself happy. Be honest with yourself: you and your ex weren’t making each other happy. If you were, you wouldn’t have broken up in the first place. Now that you’re free, you can do what you should have from the start. Figuring out what makes you happy is the greatest gift you can give yourself. Spend some time alone and do both big and small things that put a smile on your face. It may be hard at first. Like all good things, being content takes practice.  Put yourself first for once. You deserve happiness, so take it.
Charlotte is a freelance writer who's addicted to binge-watching TV, drinking far too much coffee, and writing articles.