Breaking up and letting go of someone you love is hard.
If you’ve been together for any length of time and you find yourself thinking you can’t live without them, a break-up can be devastating.
Love is messy and wonderful and deeply rooted in us when we find the one we think we are meant to be with.
But it can be made all the more troublesome when ties are severed and two people go their separate ways.
When you are dealing with lost love, it can be hard to find your way back from the brink.
Here’s how to let go of someone you love so you can get back to living the life you want.
1) Don’t set a timer.
Some of the best advice we can give is to tell you not to put pressure on yourself to get over someone you love as fast as possible.
These things take time and if you try to force recovery from the loss of love, you might find that you have a harder time making amends.
Let go of any expectations of how long you should grieve your loss and try to focus on the positive things as a way to live in the here and now.
It’s okay to feel all the feelings, thoughts, and emotions that come along with this kind of experience and if you are just rushing to get to the next thing, you’ll miss the opportunity to reconcile everything and you might end up suffering longer because of it.
2) Take stock.
Before you do anything, you need to allow the reality of what has happened to set in. Let it soak in and wash over you.
Your relationship has ended. That is a horrible thing. Even if you are glad the relationship is over, you may still find yourself feeling lost without someone to turn to on a regular basis.
It’s important to pay attention to where you are at in life right now and where you want to go from here.
Taking stock helps you see what is right in front of you and once you know where you are, you can formulate a plan for where you want to go.
3) Be kind to yourself.
A lot of people might tell you to take a break and try to do something that is just for you – some people run out and buy a new car or move to a new city or quit their job and start a business they’ve always wanted to start.
When faced with dire straights, it’s easy to be reminded of not having the rest of your life to get things in order.
Losing love is often akin to someone dying. It can require you to be very kind and gentle with yourself.
Start by not listening to the people who are pressuring you to do this a certain way. You can move on in your own way without having to please others.
(To dive deep into mindful techniques to improve your self-esteem and live in the present moment, check out Hack Spirit’s most popular eBook: The No-Nonsense Guide to Using Buddhism and Eastern Philosophy for a Better Life).
4) Dig Deep.
In order to let go and get over someone, you need to focus on yourself – not the other person.
You might have a few moments of rage and anger toward them, but the truth is that if you really want to get things together and get your life back, you are going to have to let them go.
Dig deep into your own conscious and figure out why you wanted that relationship in the first place.
What did you get out of it?
Was it just the thing you did for so long you don’t even remember why you were together in the first place?
Find out what you were getting out of the relationship and then decide what you want from life that you couldn’t get from that relationship.
5) Remove them from your life completely.
In order to allow yourself to process and let go of someone you love, you should take the time to remove your ex-partner from your social media.
Even if you decided to end things on good terms, the sting of seeing what they are up to might be too much for some people.
Rather than leave yourself exposed to the possibility that you might open your phone and find them hanging out with someone else on social media, just block them or reduce notifications from them for the time being.
If things ended badly and you are still reeling in anger and pain, get rid of them completely.
6) Talk it out.
Getting things off your chest will go a long way in helping you process the situation.
Rather than talk to people who are just going to tell you how much better off you are and how he or she was terrible for you anyway, talk to someone who will just let you get your two-cents in.
You need to be able to express your concerns, joy, fear, worry, wonder, and curiosity in a safe space.
Friends and family often tell people that they are better off, but really, it won’t feel like that for a long time.
In order to get over someone, you need to focus in on the feelings you are having and talk them through with someone who will give you the space to do so.
Professional help might be a good option if you don’t have someone in your life who will lend an unbiased ear.
7) Let go of the blame and finger-pointing.
If you want to give yourself a fighting shot, don’t blame yourself or your ex-partner. That doesn’t get you anywhere.
Even if it was your fault, what does feeling bad about yourself accomplish?
If you’ve lost a relationship because of something you did, you’ve suffered enough.
There’s no need to put yourself in a position that leaves you feeling unworthy of love again.
8) Take yourself out of town for a while.
If all else fails, take yourself on a road trip or fly to a different city to see some new things.
Give yourself some quiet time to think and reflect and to get away from the same faces you see all the time.
It’s not about escape. It’s about giving yourself space and time you need to refocus and re-energize for your next move.
(Struggling to get over a break-up? In my new eBook, The Art of Breaking Up: The Ultimate Guide to Letting Go of Someone You Loved, you’ll learn how to accept yourself, your feelings and the breakup, and ultimately move forward with a better life).
9) Look around.
When figuring out your next move, think about the other relationships in your life and how they make you feel alive and have a purpose.
Remember that your entire life does not revolve around your partner, and even if it did, it doesn’t have to forever.
Now that you are separated, you can start to think for yourself again.
What friends have you missed? What activities have you given up? What used to make life worth living that you haven’t had a lot of time to practice since being in a relationship?
Think about what else is out there that could spark a light in you and make a decision to focus on that instead of the breakup that is consuming your life right now.
10) Severe the ties.
You need to just let them go. Physically. You can’t have contact with them immediately following the split. It’s for your own good.
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It’s like when you go on a diet but you tell yourself you’ll just have one more piece of chocolate cake. It can’t be like that. One piece always turns into two.
So cut this thing off at the knees and don’t talk to your old partner for some time, if ever again. You don’t owe them anything here. This is about taking care of you.
11) Let yourself feel whatever you are feeling.
Rather than try to drown your feelings, allow your feelings to overcome you.
So many people find breakups hard because they resist the thoughts and feelings that bubble up, but it can be so much more impactful to just allow yourself to feel the feelings and acknowledge that you are hurting.
When we deny ourselves the chance to explore our feelings and let ourselves feel things for real, that’s when we end up with chocolate all over our faces and our boyfriend or girlfriend’s number back in our phone.
12) Stop daydreaming about what might have been.
Don’t let yourself spend time thinking about what might have been or what could be if you just forgive each other.
Depending on the situation, it might seem easy to be able to go back to the way things were, or if you were willing to forgive them just to go back to normal, but don’t get sucked into the temptation.
You know what happened and there’s no point in wondering what might happen if you got back together. You shouldn’t get back together.
People break up all the time and it turns out to the best thing for both of them.
As humans, we make a decision from places of weakness and then resolve to settle for the results of those decisions.
13) Forgive yourself…and them.
In order to move you, you need to forgive yourself first. It might seem like the best thing to do is to forgive your partner, but this is isn’t about them.
It’s about you and where you are in life right now. Make time to let yourself off the hook before giving any props to someone else.
You might choose not to forgive them, but if nothing else, you need to allow yourself to move on.
You’ll continue to fall down and blame yourself for everything if you don’t give yourself permission to get on with things.
It’s a simple concept, but one that people often get wrong by giving away forgiveness to other people first.
14) Go live your best life.
Rather than sit at home and wallow in your sorrows, get out there and do things that make you feel alive.
A lot of people tailspin out of control after a bad break-up, but if you hit the ground running and focus on yourself first, you’ll be living a great life again in no time.
And remember, your life was pretty darn good before this person came into it, otherwise they wouldn’t have wanted to be a part of your life, right?
Give yourself some credit for what you’ve been able to create in your life and then get back to building it for yourself.
(If you’re looking for an easy-to-follow framework to help you find your purpose in life and achieve your goals, check out our eBook on how to be your own life coach here).
15) Eyes front.
It’s easy to look back on what was and wonder what might have been, but you need to trust the universe that what has transpired is what was supposed to happen.
Everything happens for a reason. Sometimes that reason is that we made a terrible mistake or a bad decision, but when it comes to love, everything is negotiable.
You can negotiate with yourself to let it go and focus on what’s to come.
Trusting that what happened is truth allows you to go forward trusting that what will happen is also what is meant to be.
We often put our faith in other people when we should be putting our faith in the universe. It’s got our back. That person wasn’t the right person for you, no doubt about it. Trust it.
16) Meet new people
No, you don’t have to hop into bed with the first person you meet. Sex won’t help you let go of someone you loved, trust me.
But you do need to get out there and meet new people so you can let yourself understand that there are decent people out there for you to meet.
Sometimes we can get tunnel vision of the person we loved – and we believe that we’ll never find someone as good. But that simply isn’t true.
There’s a whole world of people out there to meet and many of them will make great partners.
I’m not saying you have to fall in love again any time soon.
But just get out there and don’t be afraid to meet someone new. It will be a small step on a long journey of full recovery.
Love is hard enough without having to deal with its loss. When a relationship ends, it can be devastating to both partners.
If you’ve been jilted, you might have a really hard time getting back on your feet and learning to love again.
What seems to come so naturally sometimes can feel painful and uncomfortable at others, but when you work at recovering from a lost relationship, you have the most success at living a better life in short order.
Keep in mind that you weren’t born with this person on your hip and you won’t die with them on it either.
You are an individual with individual dreams and goals and you can do your own thing again in no time by following the above simple rules for letting go of lost love.
When it comes to losing love, it can be a devastating blow to your ego, life, and belief systems. Figuring out who you are could be your new life’s purpose.
No matter how long you have been walking this earth, there is always something new to discover about yourself.
There are opportunities all around you to find new purpose and to learn to live on your own again. With so much emphasis put on a happily ever after, we often forget that we can be perfectly happy all by ourselves.
Finding the light inside yourself is a journey worth taking and one that will free you from the devastation of losing your love for good.
Getting over someone doesn’t happen overnight.
It’s not like there’s a magic pill you can take and you’re suddenly over your ex – but wouldn’t that be nice?
In reality, it can take people months or even years to get over someone, and in some cases, moving on never happens.
Lost loves can run deep and follow us for eternity.
But with the right attitude and a new sense of purpose following a breakup, you can get over your ex and get on with your life in a way that not only makes the hurting stop but makes the world seem like a wonderful place again.
NEW EBOOK: If you’re still having trouble letting go, then check out my latest eBook: The Art of Breaking Up: The Ultimate Guide to Letting Go of Someone You Loved. You’ll learn how to accept yourself, your feelings and the breakup, and ultimately move forward with an even better life than you had before. After reading this eBook, you’ll become one of those people who can accept, process and move on. Check it out here.