Three essential items for your post-breakup to do list

Woman home hug pillow

Let’s be real: breakups are rough. Regardless of how good your relationship was before the split, a breakup is a jarring event that can feel unnatural. Overnight, the person you shared every thought with suddenly becomes the person you’re not allowed to speak to anymore.

It’s no wonder many of us struggle to get through those first few days after a breakup without either taking the other person back, or begging for a second chance when you don’t really want one. If you’re going through a breakup right now, these tips will help you stay strong through those first few painful days.

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Craft a simple breakup story

Everyone wants to know what happened. While your family and friends may have the best intentions, it’s not helpful to you to continually rehash the situation. For your own sanity, come up with a brief and vague account of the split to tell most of the people who ask. Keep the real story for your closest friends who are helping you through the breakup.

Get out of the house

Often the best way to get through the first few days of a breakup is also the thing you least feel like doing. When we’re sad and dejected, the last thing we want to do is put on a nice clean shirt and head out to a coffee shop or a Meetup at the park. But if you can get over this hump, you will be so glad that you did. If you have limited mobility and struggle to leave the house alone, it’s worth seeking support for people living with a disability. Don’t be afraid to reach out for a little community support when you need to get out of the house. And when you’re struggling to get yourself up and out the door, sometimes it takes a little faith—believing that the fresh air and interaction with the outside world will do you good, even when you don’t feel it—or a nudge from a friend. Call someone you trust and let them know you’re up for an outing, even when you aren’t. A good friend will make sure you follow through. Preferring to be alone is okay, too. How about a solo road trip?

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Be Strong on Social Media

However you slice it, a breakup is not the time for social media. While you might justify keeping those apps on your phone by saying that you need to receive messages from friends, you will end up stalking your ex and making yourself miserable. When the dreaded breakup happens, the best thing you can do for your sanity is delete your social media apps. That is step one. Step two is announcing on all your social media channels that you’re taking a social media break—people will protest but secretly, everyone will admire your willpower—and that you are contactable by email. Step three is getting a friend to change your social media passwords on desktop. Now you’re all set: your good friends will contact you via email. The rest of the world be damned! Once you’ve survived that first week, you’re out of the danger zone. When you can trust yourself not to use social media to make yourself miserable, go ahead and download the apps again. 

Whether you dated for a month or five years, the first few days after a breakup are hard. These tips will help you weather the storm.