No matter who ended the relationship, a breakup is never easy — and while nothing can erase the pain entirely, these simple steps may lessen the blow. When you're struggling to let go of an ex, it's tempting to turn to ultimatums like "I'll never talk to him again," but those black-and-white plans aren't always realistic. Rather than setting strict rules for yourself and beating yourself up if you break them, try these strategies to move on:
- Set some goals. If there's a passion that you put on the back burner during your relationship, now's the time to pick it back up again. Been missing book club lately? Wishing you had more time for exercise or a cooking class? Erase "date night" from your calendar and fill that time with your favorite hobbies instead.
- Do a digital cleanup. Relationships don't just exist in the real world anymore; now they live on the Internet, too. Luckily, the upcoming KillSwitch app ($1) is making it easier than ever to cut online ties and keep you from getting emotional every time his name pops up. Once you've downloaded the app, it will remove all the pictures, videos, and status updates tagged with your ex's name, then store the photos in a hidden album in case you want to see them later.
- Change the scenery. It can be hard to clear your head when you're surrounded by all the people and places you shared with your ex, so give yourself an emotional break by taking a trip or spending time in another neighborhood. Without all those physical triggers nearby, you'll find it easier to think about something else.
- Grab your planner. Boredom is your biggest breakup enemy, so make a point to call your friends and schedule plenty of fun events that will keep you busy. Even if it's just a coffee date or a nightly walk, those little efforts to stay active can help you shift your focus for the time being.
- Use your support system. Don't feel bad about wallowing every once in a while. It's OK to lean on your friends and family in the wake of a breakup, and if you reach out when you need someone to talk to, you'll have a better chance of finding closure and moving on.