You’ve heard the old saying, “All good things must come to an end.”
Sadly, if this saying applies to your love relationship, and you aren’t ready for that ending to come, it can be heartbreaking.
Nothing prepares you for the emotional punch in the gut when your one and only announces it’s over.
That familiar ache in your chest just won’t go away.
The pain lingers no matter how much time has passed since things ended with your ex.
Letting go feels impossible when everywhere you look triggers memories of what you shared.
But healing is possible if you make a commitment to yourself.
With determination and the right techniques, you can move through the hurt to create a life defined by you, not by a lost love.
Why Is Getting Over Someone You Love So Hard?
Ending a relationship with someone you still care deeply about is one of life’s greatest challenges.
Your heart doesn’t comprehend why this person who meant so much is suddenly gone from your life.
This profound sense of loss, combined with the myriad of emotions you’re experiencing, can make getting over your ex feel impossible.
Several factors contribute to the immense challenge of moving on:
- Your brain networks created to bond you two together don’t disappear overnight. Neurologically, your attachment makes you crave closeness. This urge doesn’t fade quickly.
- Your routines, inside jokes, shared spaces, and memories keep your ex at the front of your mind. Even with distance, they remain woven into your days.
- Seeing your ex move on stirs up jealousy and regret, despite knowing the relationship wasn’t meant to be. Feelings of bitterness over being “replaced” are natural.
- You miss the emotional intimacy you shared. The secure feeling of having someone to turn to doesn’t vanish when the relationship ends.
Over time, the sharpness of these wounds dulls, but emotional healing takes patience, self-care, and a willingness to let go.
How to Get Over Someone You Love with 25 Healing Actions
The pain of heartbreak can feel endless, but you have more power to move forward than you realize.
With concerted effort and compassion for yourself, you can get through this. The following 25 research-backed steps will help you make peace with the past, embrace the present, and create a future filled with possibility.
1. Let Yourself Grieve
Losing the person you love warrants a grieving period. Suppressing your sadness will only prolong the pain. Give yourself permission to fully process the emotions when they arise. Cry, journal, talk with friends – do what feels cathartic. Appreciate grief as the necessary pathway to healing your heart.
When you notice nostalgia or heartache, don’t judge yourself. Avoid statements like “I should be over this by now.” Everyone’s journey is different. Remind yourself that the willingness to feel, though difficult, means you are moving in the right direction.
2. Remove Reminders and Mementos
Out of sight can mean out of mind. Box up gifts, old letters, pictures, and other possessions that keep your ex at the forefront. Resist peeking at these mementos as it reopens wounds.
Create new surroundings for yourself as well. Rearrange furniture, buy new bedding, and display different photos. Do what you can to refresh your environment. Limiting triggers helps your heart and mind let go.
3. Make Time for Self-Care
Nurturing yourself facilitates healing. Eat foods that energize, exercise regularly, set regular bedtimes, and limit alcohol. Spending time outdoors, getting massages, trying therapy – anything restorative works.
Treat yourself with the same lovingkindness you would show a good friend in this situation. Follow what makes you feel renewed. By caring for your body and spirit, you rediscover your worth beyond this relationship.
4. Spend Time with Supportive Friends
Surround yourself with people who build you up. Share your feelings with supportive listeners who encourage you, not just sympathize. Avoid repeatedly venting to those who drain you further or give unhealthy advice.
Lean on friends who inspire joy, laughter, and a hopeful perspective. Let them remind you of your strengths and worth. Good company nourishes the soul. Allow the right people close to you during this sensitive time.
5. Embrace New Hobbies and Pursuits
Distraction serves an important purpose when mending a broken heart. Explore new hobbies, classes, clubs, sports teams – activities unrelated to your ex where you can meet new people.
Immerse yourself in learning, creating, moving, and experiencing. When you’re engaged and curious about something fresh, thoughts of what’s lost fade. Discover passion projects that fulfill you in the moment and build toward the future.
6. Seek Professional Help if Needed
For some, heartbreak triggers grief, depression, and anxiety, requiring counseling. A therapist can help you process complex emotions, gain perspective, and establish healthy habits. There is no shame in needing extra support.
Get an assessment if you’re struggling to function or rely on ineffective coping mechanisms. Joining a support group could also provide comfort. Prioritizing your mental health speeds up your emotional recovery.
7. Be Patient with Yourself
Protect yourself from unrealistic expectations. Some days will feel easy, others excruciating. Appreciate every sign of progress without judging your pace. Accept this is a nonlinear process unique to your needs.
Trust time is an ally in healing, even when it doesn’t feel that way. Keep going with the knowledge that better days are ahead. Be gentle with yourself along the journey.
8. Write an Unsent Goodbye Letter
Putting your emotions on paper can help purge pain, regret, and anger. Write a letter to your ex – as honest as needed – that you won’t send. Detail your thoughts and feelings about the relationship from start to finish.
This exercise provides closure. Seeing your heartbreak in writing validates the depth of your grief. By fully processing it on paper, you release its hold over you. Destroy the letter when complete as a symbolic act of moving forward.
9. Remove or Block Your Ex on Social Media
Seeing an ex’s activity on social media reopens wounds. Every post, picture, and status conjures memories you associate with them. Stop self-inflicted pain by removing or blocking them.
Guard your healing by limiting digital access. Take comfort knowing you can revisit this decision later if desired. For now, create space for yourself online and off. Hearts mend faster without constant virtual reminders.
10. Visualize the Next Chapter of Your Life
Replacing heartbreak with hope is visualization’s gift. Picture your life several years down the road full of joy on your own terms. See yourself thriving in your career, friendships, interests, and dreams. Allow your mind to fill with positive scenes of the future.
When sadness and fear arise about the present, redirect your thoughts to the fulfilling life that lies ahead. Have faith you will heal if you stay the course. Your story is just beginning.
11. List Your Ex’s Flaws
This exercise provides perspective when your ex feels idealized. Make a list of their negative traits, habits, words, and actions from your relationship. Be honest about ways they hurt or disappointed you. Re-read this list when missing them.
No one is perfect, including your ex, no matter how much you cared for them. Remembering their flaws helps combat the illusion that this person was your only source of happiness. Your needs matter.
12. Master a Useful Skill
Invest time in becoming highly skilled at something that interests you – cooking, painting, coding, or a language. The pride and confidence from mastering an ability boosts self-worth. It also occupies time that might be spent wallowing.
Choose a meaningful skill aligned with your strengths and values. Let the challenge re-energize your sense of purpose. You’ll feel empowered rediscovering your talents outside the context of this relationship.
13. Travel Somewhere New
Escape and expand your worldview by traveling somewhere you’ve never been – either solo or with a fun group. Immersing yourself in a foreign place filled with new sights, sounds, and people rejuvenates the spirit.
Book a getaway that aligns with your bucket list – hiking, museums, concerts, cuisine, beaches, wildlife. Let the adventure spark inspiration and joy. By stepping out of the familiar, you access reserves of courage you didn’t know you had.
14. Prioritize High-Quality Sleep
Maximize sleep’s restorative benefits during this difficult period. Being well-rested improves decision-making, lifts mood, and combats fatigue. Adjust your schedule and nighttime habits to get at least 7-8 hours nightly.
Treat sleep as a sanctuary where, for a time, you feel no sadness. Make your bedroom cool, dark, and tranquil. Power down devices before bed and avoid stimulating activities. Quality sleep heals in body, mind, and heart.
15. Try Couples Counseling if Appropriate
If both parties are willing to work at it, counseling can revive the relationship. An objective therapist helps you communicate constructively and get clarity. This option requires you both to take responsibility for growth.
Consider counseling if you’re unsure about ending things or if salvaging the bond feels worthwhile or realistic. Be honest if efforts collapse. At least you tried before moving forward separately.
16. Spend Time in Nature
Nature’s beauty and simplicity heal frazzled emotions. Get outside daily – hike, garden, have a picnic, walk the beach. Observe the steadiness of the tides, seasons, and stars. Feel your place within the natural world.
Tune into nature’s rhythms instead of ruminating. The life around you remains vibrant when relationships falter. Allow the elements to renew your spirit and gain perspective. Nature reflects how life changes, ends, and begins again.
17. Write in a Gratitude Journal
Keep a daily journal listing what you feel grateful for, like your health, a friend’s kindness, and a skill you have. This trains your brain to focus on the positive and shifts energy away from loss.
When consumed by heartbreak, it’s easy to dwell on the negatives. Committing to regular gratitude lists counteracts this. End each journal session feeling uplifted. What you appreciate appreciates.
18. Prioritize Physical Health
Caring for your body bolsters emotional resilience and self-esteem. Eat nutritious foods, stay active, and get regular checkups. Bad habits only compound feelings of worthlessness. Treat your physical well-being as the foundation for a fulfilling life ahead.
Form healthy habits now that serve you months and years from this heartbreak. When you feel physically empowered, you know you have reserves of strength for any challenge. Your health comes first.
19. Allow Yourself to Feel Angry
Anger signals self-respect. Don’t criticize yourself if you feel bitter or vengeful about how this ended. Recognize anger as part of standing up for your worth. Then funnel it into productive change.
Vent to a friend, scream into your pillow or punch a punching bag. Exercise, journal, and create art to release irritation. Anger fades quicker when expressed constructively. Know your frustrations are justified. Protecting your heart involves honoring when you feel wronged.
20. Take Care of Your Other Relationships
Make sure that your feelings of hurt and pain don’t make you so angry that you lash out at others. You may end up focusing your anger about the break-up on other people in your life who are important to you and could be a support system for you.
Be honest with the people you care about, and let them know that you feel hurt and angry, not at them, but about the loss of the relationship. If you do lash out at a friend, apologize quickly and let them know you are having a hard time with the flood of emotions you are experiencing.
21. Work on Your Self-Esteem
You may feel jilted and unlovable after a breakup. Why did this person stop loving me? What’s wrong with me that they didn’t stay? Your ex found you wonderful and compatible for a period of time, but ultimately something didn’t mesh. That’s not an indictment of your character or your lovability.
Don’t allow yourself to sink into negative self-talk and self-doubt. Acknowledge that things simply didn’t work out with this person, but there is a new person out there who is the right match for you.
22. Open Yourself to Meeting Someone New
When the time is right, consider dating again with an open heart and mind. Be honest about your relationship status and emotional availability. Refrain from rebounding until healed.
Put effort into varied interests and friendships, not just romantic pursuits. Still, let new people kindle your optimism. Starting over can feel daunting but brings invaluable lessons. You deserve to be appreciated and loved fully.
23. Learn from the Breakup.
Loss is a natural part of life, and even though it is incredibly painful, it can teach us many lessons. It’s hard to see those lessons during the initial tsunami of emotions that come with splitting up. But once the emotional chaos calms a little, you’ll do yourself a favor by approaching this painful life passage with mindfulness.
Relationships are laboratories for personal growth. We learn so much about ourselves and about what we do and don’t want in a partner. Ask yourself what you learned from this person, both good and bad. What would you do differently in the next relationship? How do you need to change and grow?
24. Stay Strong in Your Resolve
If you happen to run into your past love and catch them at a moment of weakness or loneliness, don’t buy into your ex’s feelings (or your own) and become intimate with them.
Reconnecting this way may reignite your feelings for your ex, but it may not do the same for them.
Your former flame may be intimate with you but then regret it and want to forget it happened the next day. This will cause your heart to break all over again and set you back many weeks in the process of healing.
25. Forgive Your Ex and Yourself
Forgiveness neutralizes negative feelings as you conclude this chapter. Send well wishes to your ex silently. Reflect on the positives from your time together. Think about the life lessons gained. Release blame and anger.
Forgive yourself for any regrets and perceived mistakes. Learn but resist self-criticism. Breakups involve two imperfect people. You gave what you could. Closure comes by honoring the past and believing better awaits you.
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Can You Ever Stop Loving Someone?
As you’re getting over someone you love, you might feel anger, jealousy, betrayal, and grief. All of these feelings are a normal part of the process of getting over a love relationship.
But you wonder if you’ll ever reach the point of feeling acceptance and inner peace.
It seems impossible that the day will come when you can move past this person who still has your heart.
You might think things like:
- Letting go feels like giving up and admitting defeat.
- Maybe there’s still a chance it’s all a mistake.
- Maybe they will see the light and come back.
- If your ex-lover sees how much you still love them, things can change.
Fortunately, time is a powerful anesthetic and healer. You will learn and grow from this painful relationship and eventually move on with your life.
How Long Does It Take to Get Over Someone?
That’s a fair question, as no one wants to suffer the pain of a heartbreak one minute longer than they must.
Getting over your ex is similar to going through the stages of grief. You first go through shock, disbelief, anger, and depression until you finally reach acceptance and hope. This process is different for everyone; sometimes, it can take months to feel like yourself again.
The longer you were together, the more time it may take to see the light of day. You loved this person. You had hopes and dreams about your future together. They were your companion, confidante, and lover.
A chemical bond occurs between two people who are romantically connected, and it’s hard to dissolve that — even if it’s the best thing for both of you.
Healing from a breakup is never easy, but in time, you’ll find your heart has mended, and you are ready to find a new love.
Healing from a breakup is never easy, but in time, you’ll find your heart has mended, and you are ready to find a new love. Follow the steps outlined here, and be kind and compassionate with yourself as you grieve the end of the romance.