What Not to Do After a Breakup

If you’re going through a breakup, you’re likely to be experiencing a roller coaster of different emotions. You may be feeling sad at one moment, mad the next and/or even a bit lost and confused about what happened between you and your ex. But whatever the case may be, it’s never been more important to avoid these six actions that can cause you even more heartache and heartbreak after a breakup.

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Don’t dwell on the past.

Woman sad after a breakup
Francesco Carta Fotografo/Moment/Getty Images

If you just broke up with your partner, you should leave whatever transpired between the two of you in the past. And while you may want to replay every moment with this person in your mind in order to figure out exactly what went wrong, when things changed or how you got to this point, obsessing over every little detail of your broken relationship is only going to cause you pain, distress or even regret. Instead, you should accept the reality of the breakup situation, make peace with what occurred and place your focus on the future instead of the past. 

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Don’t stalk your ex on social media.

While it may seem extremely tempting and enticing, you shouldn’t follow your ex’s social footprint. Whether this means unfriending your ex, unfollowing him or her or simply hiding him or her from your newsfeed, there’s no point in looking at photos of your ex at a birthday party, taking trips to the beach or dining at the nicest restaurant in town. In fact, since this person is no longer in the picture, mulling over these posts and pictures is only going to make it that much harder for you to get over him or her. So instead of fixating on the happenings in your ex’s life, shift this time and energy toward improving your own life. 

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Don’t go through this alone.

When you’re dealing with a breakup, it’s never been more important to lean on your friends and family for support. And while your tendency may be to shut out the world around you and wallow in your grief and disappointment by yourself, this is actually the time to turn to your support system and the people who care about you and your well-being. To that end, if you’re having difficulties dealing with the wide range of emotions that a breakup can cause, you shouldn’t be afraid to seek professional help. Remember, even though you’re no longer with your partner, you never have to feel alone. 

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Don’t beat yourself up.

Along these same lines, it’s important that you’re not too hard on yourself and/or blaming yourself after a breakup. Even if you feel you could’ve done things differently, you should still be an advocate for yourself and treat yourself with respect, dignity and love. A breakup doesn’t define your self-worth or self-image, and while you may feel the need to engage in unhealthy behaviors such as binge drinking or overeating in order to deal with your whirlwind of emotions, it’s imperative that you engage in self-love and self-care instead. 

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Don’t contact your ex.

While every fiber in your being may be telling you to text, call or find a time to see your ex and/or even be intimate with him or her, this can be a grave mistake. In fact, contacting your ex after a breakup can make it even harder for you to move on from this person. And while your strong feelings for him or her may be pushing you to find a way to keep him or her in your life, even if it’s just for one more night together, you’re simply prolonging the inevitable and making it more challenging and difficult to get over him or her. 

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Don’t lose hope.

It’s not uncommon after a breakup for people to feel that they’re never going to find someone else. But it’s time to rid yourself of these negative thoughts right now and recognize that your breakup in no way means that you’re destined to be alone forever—to the contrary! You should use this breakup as an opportunity to figure out exactly what you want in a partner and what qualities, values and characteristics are important to you. Let this breakup serve as a learning experience and a stepping stone toward a better and brighter relationship with someone new in the future.