Don’t try to get revenge

Experts say getting revenge on a partner won’t make you feel any better. In fact, it will only prolong your suffering and put you in the same place as the person who hurt you. Karma is a powerful force. You don’t have to get revenge when someone wrongs you; karma will get them back without your input.

Don’t stalk their new partner

If your ex is dating someone new, it can be tempting to stalk them on social media and talk trash. This isn’t what you should be doing. They’re no longer part of your life, so there’s no need for you to waste time thinking about them or doing anything other than moving forward with your life. If they cheated on you, they’ll probably cheat again.

Make a breakup playlist

Music can have a powerful effect on your mood. A breakup mix can help you through the difficult days after a breakup. When you’re trying to cheer yourself up, it’s best to listen to music that you know puts you in a good mood. If you know sad songs soothe you, go for it. Otherwise, step away from Adele – she’ll only make you feel worse.

Be the bigger person

Don’t bad-mouth your ex. It reflects poorly on you and doesn’t accomplish anything. Instead of trash-talking, focus on moving forward with your life. It can be difficult to stay silent, especially when you’re hurting. But try your best to be the bigger person by not talking about them behind their back or spreading rumours.

Go no-contact

Whether you’re the person who’s called for the breakup or the one given the news, a cooling-off period is an immensely important step to ensure a clean and mess-free break. While some exes can be friends eventually, continuing to contact and follow each other in the immediate aftermath will make it harder to let go and adjust to the new reality.

Don’t try to make them jealous

You know those things you post on social media, hoping your ex will see them and get jealous? Well, that’s called passive-aggressive behaviour. It makes you still think about them and takes up space in your mind. If you’re posting for the sole purpose of getting a reaction from your ex, you should probably stop.

Stay away from the salon

It’s one thing changing the furniture around in your house, it’s another getting your haircut. With the furniture, if you don’t like it you can just switch it back the way it was. A drastically different haircut that doesn’t pan out? That is going to be with you for weeks if not months. Don’t do it!

Don’t stoop to personal insults

Breakups are painful, there’s no getting around that. However, that’s no excuse for either party to be cruel, petty or vindictive. If you find yourself either approaching or reacting to a split by hurling insults, insisting you never really loved the other person or making mean comments about their appearance, then that’s a sign you need a second to tap out and cool off.

Don’t make a scene in public

Whenever possible, it’s always better to have a difficult conversation in person – and of course, the decision to break up is usually the most difficult conversation of all. If at all possible, avoid doing it in public. People feel more free to be themselves in private and may say things they wouldn’t otherwise say in public.

Don’t be too dramatic

Breakups are hard, but they’re not the end of the world. When times get tough, give yourself some time to mourn and heal. However, don’t let the intensity of your emotions make you doubt yourself or swear off love forever. You will get over it and move on; just remember that it takes time.

Feel your feelings

Getting out into the great outdoors and blowing off the cobwebs of a failed relationship may be great for some people but bad for others who can’t seem to avoid their emotions. Pro tip: don’t. Listen to your body and your sensations and normalise them. Don’t let them manifest into a boogeyman.

Don’t ask friends to pick sides

The longer you’ve been with your partner, the more likely it is that you have lots of friends in common. In fact, people who may have started out as just your friends may have ended up being equally close to both of you. As a result, the most compassionate thing you can do when a relationship ends is not pressure your pals to pick sides.

Some days are off limits

There’s no such thing as the perfect day to break up with someone. However, that doesn’t mean there are no exceptionally bad days to do it either. Under no circumstances should you pack things in on their birthday, over the Christmas break or, worst of all, on Valentine’s Day. Just pick any nondescript day and save them years of ruined festivity and romance.

Don’t do it over text message

Unless you’re in a long-distance relationship where the other person is at the top of a mountain with no phone service or internet connection, you shouldn’t ever break up with a partner over text. Not only is it juvenile and cowardly, but it also signals that you never respected your partner, their time or the happy moments you spent together.

Accept their reaction

If you’re the person who initiates the breakup, you need to prepare to accept their reaction. While some expressions of anger or incredulity are unwarranted, like physical violence, verbal abuse or outright cruelty, most other responses are totally valid. Asking your partner not to cry, not to need space or to immediately be okay with being friends is a controlling and unfair impulse.

Don’t fall out with their family

The worst part about ending a long-term relationship especially is that it unavoidably involves people who are totally innocent. Breaking up with a partner also means splitting from their friends, their parents, and their siblings. Even if you’re mad at the person who ended things, taking it out on their family will only sour any good memories going forward.

Don’t burn their belongings

Lots of expressions of anger, disbelief or sadness are totally acceptable in the wake of a breakup, and many can even be healthy or cathartic. However, unless you ended things because your partner did something heinous, burning their belongings probably isn’t the way to go. One day you might want all the stuffed animals, t-shirts and love notes back… or they will.

Don’t ask too many people for advice

Breaking up with your partner is a big life decision, so it’s understandable that you’d want to get the opinions of a few close friends. With that said, it’s worth bearing in mind that the more people you talk to before the split, the more likely your partner is to feel like the last to know. This is especially bad if you have lots of friends in common.

Don’t go too wild

Letting loose and being silly in the weeks following a break-up is a normal and healthy part of moving on. Getting an extreme haircut, hitting the bars a few nights in a row, living off pizza and ice cream and researching cat adoption are all accepted ways to cheer yourself up. Just don’t go so crazy you end up jeopardising your career, your friendships or your self-respect.

Keep details off social media

There’s no need to share your break-up publicly. Why? Because the people who need to know already do know with any luck. Break-ups that usually end up on social media are linked to cheating. Try not to lower yourself to public humiliation. It will probably come off as insecure and irrational.

Don’t stay connected

Luckily, most social media apps allow users to mute or hide people without having to commit a drastic unfollow. Whichever route you choose isn’t too important, so long as there is no longer any contact between you. Some relationships end on good terms, but most don’t. Fight future temptation to drunk message them.

Revamp your living space

When a relationship ends, your house or apartment may feel like a shell of its former self. If you have the means to, packing up and moving to a new place may be beneficial. If not, just make sure to revamp where you’re living. Switch up the wallpaper, for example, or rearrange the furniture. Something simple could go a long way.

Don’t wallow in self-pity for too long

It’s natural to fester in self-pity and heartache after a break-up put try and cut this down to a day or even an afternoon. It’s crucial for us to get up, put our shoulders back and get some fresh air. This doesn’t mean you have to embark on a hike or marathon. Simply running an errand like grocery shopping can work a treat.

Don’t make the same mistakes

Spending some time focusing on the flaws of your ex doesn’t sound like the smartest thing to do, but it could really help you. All wounds heal with time and there’s a chance you may become immune to the problems that caused your last break-up. Write down what to avoid in a partner in the immediate wake of your split.

Stay hydrated

Break-ups can be emotionally and physically exhausting, especially if the relationship lasted several years. Chances are, you will cry. A lot. You will forget to eat and drink. Avoid malnourishment for the sake of a bad ex and get some good old-fashioned water in your system. A healthy body is key to overcoming the worst!

Don’t cave to FOMO

When you come out of a relationship, you’ll find yourself with loads of free time now that you’re not spending every weekend doing activities with a loved one. Enjoy yourself, and see friends, but don’t feel compelled to attend every event within a hundred-mile radius. Embrace the Joy of Missing Out.

Don’t rule out a dating app hiatus

Going on the rebound has been around as long as relationships but it’s never been easier with dating apps. Within minutes, you can go from a nasty break-up to flirting with a stranger on Tinder or Hinge. You may be encouraged to do this by friends but try not to. Give yourself some time to process things.


Are you feeling pressured by the company you’re in to overcompensate and act sadder than you are, just because that’s what’s expected? Don’t be! Some break-ups don’t sting for as long as they make out in movies. Not only is it okay to smile but it’ll release all the “happy hormones” like serotonin and dopamine.

Don’t bring your friends down

Just because your relationship didn’t work but your friends continue to flourish doesn’t give you carte blanche to be bitter and jealous. Remind yourself that every lived experience is unique and not in competition with the next. Be grateful that you’re surrounded by examples of healthy relationships.

Listen to music – even the sad songs

Don’t just listen to music that will counteract how you’re feeling. Upbeat music may distract you in the moment but it’ll be followed by another crash. Instead, grab life by the privates and indulge your gloominess with a wistful album full of heartbreak and lost love.

Book yourself a holiday

It’s hard to be surrounded by places and streets that remind you of a painful breakup, so why not book yourself a holiday? That holiday can be anything from a quiet few days away to a rowdy weekend of partying. It could be done alone or with all your friends. Choose whatever feels right for you and go for it.

Don’t focus on what went wrong

We learn a lot about ourselves through relationships, both good and bad. Going around feeling angry and mistreated won’t help you learn anything. If you can, admit that the relationship ended for a good reason, and focus on what you would like to feel in your next relationship.

Don’t have ex-sex

What’s one harmless, no strings attached night in the sheets going to do? A lot! It will open up old wounds, so to speak. Doing the most intimate thing known to man while trying to move on from an emotional and physical bond is – spoiler alert! - a terrible idea. As Dua Lipa said, if you’re under him, you ain’t getting over him.

Don’t be afraid to seek therapy

Therapy works well for so many people, including those who are in or have just come out of serious and fractured relationships, so why not you? The idea can seem heavy but don’t allow social judgement to prevent you from doing what’s best for your brain. The coping tools you will learn from therapy are priceless.

Read a book

Reading: food for the soul! Pop down to your local bookstore or just browse online and pick out a good few books to keep you entertained (and distracted) for a month or so. Should you avoid the romance section? Not particularly. It could rejuvenate your feelings about relationships!

Do the things you loved doing but they didn’t

Relationships are about compromise and sacrifice. It’s normal to find yourself giving up passions and preferences for the sake of peace. Food is a main example. Let’s say your favourite takeout was Mexican but your partner always hated it. Go crazy. Eat so many tacos that they grant you the keys to Mexico City.

Be patient with yourself

There’s one answer to the question, “How long does it take to get over a breakup?” You have to practise patience, which is admittedly a lot easier said than done. There will be bad days, there will be good days. Your emotions are going to hop around in the throes of grief for a while.

Do take up a flow state hobby

A flow state describes a feeling where you become fully immersed in whatever you are doing. This could be knitting, it could be painting, it could be skipping. Find yourself an easy hobby and get moving. Concentrating on something repetitive and precise will distract you from your struggles.

Appoint an intermediary

What do you do when you’ve broken up with someone but are still bonded, and will be bonded for years to come, by something like a pet, or even a child? In such cases, it can be helpful to have a trusted friend or family member act as an intermediary to arrange logistics while you get some distance.

Don’t rush to throw away every memento

While it’s generally better to cut all former ties to an ex, there may be certain photo albums or crafts from your relationship that you don’t want to part way with. And that shouldn’t have to be explained. For peace of mind, however, ask a friend to hide or hold on to the memento.

Consider volunteering

Some people find it incredibly rewarding to give back to the community after a breakup. Some even go on mission trips to serve women and children who have been rescued from all kinds of traumatic events. By helping make the world a better place, you’re making yourself a better person.

Picture yourself over them

This can come off as a touch pathetic and deluded but it can work! Simply picture yourself down the line, on a cool summer’s evening, happy as Larry - or at the very least nearing Larry’s happiness - where your life is back on track. Basque in that sense of calm and accomplishment. It will come!

Don’t personalise the breakup

Try not to cry into the mirror and blame yourself for the breakup. Relationships take two to tango and if two people are incompatible, they are incompatible. Both parties in a relationship are trying to get their own needs met. Some couples are able to meet those needs and others are not. Life moves on.

Don’t wonder if you’ll get back together

Unless a breakup was genuinely rash, try to let go of the possibility that you will get back together. Seeking closure is impossible if you continue to hold onto false hope. There’s every chance your ex has moved on. They might even have a new relationship. Save yourself the embarrassment and let it go!

Make a list of singlehood pros

Not every human thrives in a relationship with another. Remind yourself that when you’re in the thick of a nasty breakup. Being single can have huge benefits, your own schedule being the main one. You can now decide when and where you get stuff done, without someone yapping in your ear.

Remember that you can – and will – survive on your own

Life may seem isolated and lonely and stark following a breakup. You may wonder, “How will I ever get everything done without that helping hand anymore?” The way you did before you met them. Remember, you coped perfectly fine before the relationship so why shouldn’t you be able to out of it?

Keep your distance

After a breakup, you and your ex may decide to remain friends. But unless you’re certain that you’re able to maintain a friendly relationship, it’s better to avoid contact with each other. You don’t have to go radio silent forever, but you do need to stop all communication for as long as it takes to get over them.

Prioritize self-care

When you’re going through a breakup, it’s easy to neglect your own needs. But taking care of yourself is important for your mental, physical, and spiritual well-being. Right now, you may be feeling discouraged and brokenhearted. It’s important to take good care of yourself during this time so that you can heal and move forward. Make sure that you eat well and get regular exercise.

Don’t dwell on the past

If you broke up with your partner, try not to dwell on the good times you had together. Instead, focus on the reasons why you decided to end things. If your ex initiated the breakup, don’t second-guess yourself or seek reassurance from others. Don’t romanticize the good times, because they weren’t always so good. Accept the situation, look forward, and move on.

Don’t drink too much

Drinking before a breakup conversation can lead to a lot of hurt feelings. Alcohol may make it easier to start a difficult conversation, but it can also lead to saying things you don’t mean. We’re not our best selves when we’re drinking, so it’s a good idea to avoid getting hammered during a breakup conversation.

Don’t ghost

It’s easy to just stop responding to texts and eventually stop calling, but this is not the right way to end a relationship. If you were comfortable enough to share your bed with someone, you should be able to talk openly about your feelings with them.

Create new friendships

Mutual friends can be supportive, but they may not have enough distance from the situation to provide good advice. Expand your social circle. Talking to new people can unlock opportunities for new discussions, which can help you move past old problems. Change the subject and your perspective will change too!

Hide your relationship status

Instead of broadcasting the fact that you’re single on Facebook, consider making the change private. That way, only you can see the new status. It also helps to wait a while before updating your social media status, so that your ex won’t feel hurt by the change.

Write down your feelings

If you find yourself struggling to move on, try writing a letter to your ex thanking them for what you gained in the relationship. This exercise has helped many people deal with the end of a relationship. The letter doesn’t have to be shared with your ex. Most people find that writing out their thoughts is enough closure.

Delete, delete, delete

You might want to clear your phone, hard drive, and social media accounts of any photos or other material relating to your ex. This will make it easier to move on. It’s natural to want to hold onto the past, but you have to let go in order to move on. If you keep your ex’s memories close, you’ll just be prolonging the pain of the breakup.

Don’t chase after closure

When you have just ended a relationship and are full of questions for your ex, it can be easy to think that you need closure to move on. But the truth is that closure isn’t always possible. If you depend on your ex for answers, you may never find them. Instead of begging them to talk to you, focus on rebuilding your self-esteem and self-worth.

Respect their boundaries

If your ex wants nothing to do with you, let them go. If they want their things back from your place, don’t hold on to them out of spite. Give them back and say goodbye. It’s important to respect your ex’s decisions, even if they’re not what you want to hear. Give them the space they need and take control of your own future.

Set a splurge limit

Do you shop to feel better after disappointment? Maybe you want some new shoes, or a new shirt, or even a new dress. It’s easy to get carried away when you’re shopping, but setting a budget will help you avoid overspending. If you know how much you want to spend, you’ll feel better about your purchases.

Allow yourself to cry

Believe it or not, crying is a natural release that can actually improve your mood. It’s okay to sit with your feelings and let yourself feel bad. It’s healthy to acknowledge the pain and be in touch with your emotions, even if others might not understand.

Don’t withdraw

If you want to end a relationship, it’s important to be open and honest with your partner. Don’t ignore their calls, texts or invitations – even if you’re trying to avoid confrontation. Sometimes, differences can be resolved by talking and trying to understand each other. Blurring the lines between a misunderstanding and a relationship with no future may cause you to have a breakup conversation prematurely.

Try to answer any questions

When you’re breaking up with someone, it’s important to be clear and compassionate. That means helping your partner understand why you’re ending things and being willing to listen to their questions. They may try to change your mind but don’t give in. Help them understand where you’re coming from, but don’t take back your decision.

Don’t turn to substances

Breaking up can be painful, but using food, drugs, alcohol, or sex as a way to cope with the pain only numbs you from dealing with it. Substance abuse can lead to many other risks, such as legal problems, dependence on drugs and alcohol and sexually transmitted diseases.

Don’t be too spontaneous

After a breakup, immediately taking a break from your life to explore a new destination can be fun, but don’t expect it to heal you. This only distracts you for so long. However, when you get home, the pain will still be there. In other words, it won’t heal your wounds permanently.

Don’t compare new relationships to your old ones

If you have been away from the dating scene for a while, you might find yourself comparing the new people you meet to your ex. After a relationship ends, you may tend to idealize your ex and remember only the positive aspects of the relationship. But you have to try to focus on the present, not the past. The more people you meet, the less you’ll be hung up on your ex.

Get back to nature

Studies have shown that walking in forests can reduce depression, anxiety, stress, and anger. It also enhances relaxation, gratitude and selflessness. To slow your mind, try taking a walk in the woods. Spend around 20-30 minutes focusing on the forest, like the different colours of leaves or the sounds of streams. This practice has been dubbed shinrin-yoku (“forest bathing”) by Japanese researchers.

Date yourself

A solo date is a way to show yourself that you are valuable and deserve time for yourself. A solo date can be anything from a relaxing bath to an adventure sport. Try to have fun on your solo date. Don’t worry about what other people think of you. If you decide to try something else the next time, that’s fine too!

Avoid common hangout spots

Are you and your ex likely to run into each other at the local grocery store? If so, you might want to steer clear for a while. Put some distance between yourself and some of your usual haunts. Mix things up by trying new places, and avoid those places that make you feel heartbroken.

Take a personal day

Paid time off is your right as a full-time employee. If you’re not feeling well enough to work, consider staying home or working from home. But if you feel like working for a few hours will help you get your mind off things, go for it. Just be sure to take some time to grieve and gather yourself.

Don’t rule out meditation

Meditation is capable of producing a deep state of relaxation, which you will definitely need after a loud, messy breakup. Focus your attention and dispose of the irrational and negative thoughts in your mind that are causing you so much unneeded stress. It might just save you.

Focus on your career

Being single can be a chance to focus on your career and improve your skills. Strive to be independent, stable, and self-sufficient. It is also easier to move on from a breakup by staying busy in your career. Time passes quickly, and before you know it, months have gone by since the breakup and you have moved on.