First, get closure. Have one final discussion with your ex and be done with it. Going through the stages of grief will be a lot harder if you never receive the proper closure from your recently ended relationship. Talk about what went wrong and maybe even reminisce over the good memories. Try to end things on as good of terms as you can. It helps.
However, never, EVER, reach out to your ex after the final conversation. The psychology of the human mind is tough to understand and even tougher to handle. Being alone at night in bed by yourself has always been the toughest part of the day for me. Your mind starts racing and you get lost in your thoughts too quickly. This is when you begin to start thinking “should I text them?”. Don’t. They are your ex for a reason. Value yourself and know your worth and move on. I discovered melatonin as I had a hard time sleeping.
Get rid of pictures or mementos if you need to. Depending on how things ended getting rid of those reminders of your past relationship helps people find closure. I still have pictures around of my ex that I will eventually discard of. It depends on the individual, however.
Rediscover yourself. This is a big one. Recently, I was in a relationship for over three years that just ended. I am coping by rediscovering old hobbies and interests that I used to do, like reading history books and biographies. You need to get your mind off of your ex, so why not learn a thing or two along the way? When you self-reflect you learn things about yourself that you never knew and you grow from it, also leaving yourself more mature than before. If you ever want your ex back (for whatever reason) this is key.
Let yourself get emotional. You need to go through the stages of grief in order to heal and move on. You simply cannot sweep them under the proverbial rug so-to-speak. It may be tough but you will come out stronger in the end. However, don’t let your emotions seek out your dear friend Jack Daniels. Trust me, no answers are to be found at the bottom of a fifth of whiskey.
Seek out advice. This has helped me in the past — especially with older people who have been around the block once or twice. My step-father was divorced four times, my mother twice. You can learn some important lessons from them and you may even answers for your own relationship troubles.
Hang out with your friends. Simply hanging out with your friends can help you recover from your recent relationship. Having fun and doing things together as a group not only takes your mind away from your personal life but also strengthens bonds with the other people in your life.
Avoid the rebound. It’s a terrible idea to seek out a relationship after a breakup before you are ready. You haven’t healed from your previous relationship and you will likely not give your partner enough to make that relationship work, which means that eventually you will find yourself back to where you originally started. Not only will you be trying to heal the wounds from your previous relationship but also fresh wounds from the rebound relationship. Rebounds are a good way to destroy yourself and others in the process.
Recognize the situation you are in. If they are “the one” they will find their way back. Sometimes, relationships just get worn out — especially long-term relationships. Your partner may catch feelings for someone else and may think that the grass is greener on the other side and enter into a relationship right away. Rarely do these relationships ever work out, known as a “rebound”. There are many stories of exes finding each other again after a rebound when they realize that what they had was truly good. However, if an ex comes crawling back it largely depends on how serious your relationship was, what the issues were (and can they be resolved), and the true compatibility between the two of you. Until that happens all you can do is accept the situation that you are in and move on. Work on yourself and become a better, more mature individual. If your ex is truly still in love with you (and you still want them back) they will take notice. Just don’t sit around and wait for them to come back, it isn’t healthy.
In the end, remain positive. It might be tough but never be negative. Negativity is never the cure to the breakup blues. Besides, your next love could be out there waiting for you. I met my ex working at Java House, South Field Nairobi of all places and we ended up having a son together. People gravitate towards positive individuals and the fact is there are 7.5 billion people in the world, if you found love once you can find it again.
Understand that the path from heartbreak to moved on is no easy task, and may even take a long time. Unless you are a psychopath going through each of these stages is going to be a painful and arduous process. However, if you let yourself go through each stage you will get over your lost relationship. And hopefully, you will be an even better partner the next time around.