It’s official: You won’t be sailing off into the sunset together. He’s pulled this disappearing act before, and this time you’ve vowed not to take him back. That’s what you swore yesterday, until you woke up thinking about how his laugh made you melt, and how his wit dazzled you, and how the way he ran his hands through his hair almost brought you to your knees.
As your mind replays every iota of his fabulousness, your resolve begins to crumble. You can’t imagine how you could ever make it through coffee with another man, never mind fall in love. Your mind starts to play tricks on you. Maybe you were expecting too much. Maybe after a few days he’ll realize how much he misses you. Maybe if you give him just one more chance, it could all be different.
It’s time to look reality in the face: the person you think you love is not emotionally available, not now, and probably not ever. Unless you want to put your heart back in the spin cycle, you need to practice tough self-love. Here are five steps you should take now in order to get over him.
- No Contact
No contact means no contact. Block his number from your phone contacts. Delete him from your social media feeds. If he reaches out to you, do not respond! It will not be different this time. Nothing has changed — not him, not you, not the dysfunction you’ve been trying to package into a relationship.This is vital to remember so you can resist the temptation to contact him, or jump when he says, “I miss you.” If you continue to stay in touch with him, you will be stuck in bad relationship purgatory. The only way to move on is to cease all contact.
Your feelings are running you. You can’t eat, you can’t sleep, you can barely concentrate at work. Although it’s completely normal to be reeling from a broken heart, it’s important that you develop discipline in the way you engage with your feelings. When you catch yourself thinking about him, or the relationship you hoped you’d have, stay in the moment.Observe your thoughts, the sensations in your body. Suspend judgment: However you feel isn’t right or wrong, it just “is.” Take note of what you’re feeling in the present and realize that that feeling will pass. If you practice this enough times, you will begin to understand that you are in charge of your thoughts and feelings – not the other way around.
- Remember What He Did, Not What He Said
That heady feeling of infatuation, or the pain from the loss of your love object, distorts reality. It keeps you from recognizing that his actions were less than noble and kept you in a perpetual state of uncertainty. Once the glow of limerence fades, you will see the actual narrative of the relationship, which was punctuated by his bad behavior.
- Get Interested in Your Own Life
People who fixate on unavailable partners are often trying to fill a void. It’s not that you necessarily love him; you love what he represents, the allure that his life holds. The remedy for this is to turn the spotlight on your own strengths and talents and cultivate those. Do you like to write? Paint? Take photographs? What gifts do you have to offer? Could you turn your love of yoga into a teaching gig? Or your rapport with children into volunteer work with at-risk kids? Everyone has something to offer, and everyone’s life is special. Get interested in yours so that you don’t depend on other people for your self-worth.
- Eat and Sleep
When your heart is broken it’s hard to sleep and eat. But going without food and rest for an extended period of time is a fast track to clinical depression. Do not let this pattern continue! If you’re nauseated, eat frequent small meals. If you find yourself staring at the ceiling at night, try a natural sleep aid such as melatonin. If that doesn’t work, get a medical opinion about the possibility of something stronger. And for God’s sake, don’t scroll through his old text messages before bed! If you haven’t deleted them, now is the time to do so.
Implementing these steps may feel unnatural, but will become easier the more you practice them. The next time you catch yourself wanting to call him, or thinking you did something to drive him away, take a cold, hard, clinical look at the way he treated you. You deserve better than that. Isn’t it time to get over him and get on with your life?