How to Deal With Being in Love With Your Ex

Getting over a breakup can be really hard -- especially when you still have lingering feelings for your ex.
Old polaroid photographsOld polaroid photographs
When you spend a significant amount of time with a person, letting go of them can feel like the hardest thing on the planet. If you feel like you are still in love with your ex, the process of letting go of your feelings and moving on in life can be frustrating and time-consuming.
Woman thoughtfully looking out window

Step 1

Understand that your situation probably could never work.
Acknowledging this fact may put you on the road to getting over your ex -- for good. If you and your ex broke up in the first place, certainly it was for a reason. After all, breakups do not just happen out of the blue. A certain amount of dissatisfaction, whether on your part or his part, had to exist. Accept that fact that although you still have feelings for your ex, the relationship is done for a reason. Consider the possibility that what you feel for your ex isn't really even love, but perhaps nostalgia instead. Absence makes the heart grow fonder, as the old saying goes.
Young woman vacuums

Step 2

Discard remnants of your relationship.
The process may be painful, but it may be worth it in the end. If you still feel love for your ex, having reminders of the failed union may only make your healing process harder and take more time. Clean out your bedroom, whether you throw away affectionate snapshots of the two of you together at the zoo or a present your ex gave you on your first anniversary. If you do not have the heart to throw the mementos away, at least pack them up and put them somewhere out of sight.
Two friends talk on couch

Step 3

Open up to other people.
Deal with your emotions by sharing them with the most important people in your life, such as your closest pals. If you feel vulnerable and particularly upset about your feelings for your ex, try to get through them by talking about them with people you love and trust the most. Sometimes, just releasing your emotions can go a long way in dealing with them.
Man meets woman at bar

Step 4

Think about future romantic prospects.
Stop dwelling on the past. If your ex is an ex, then it may be a sign that someone better for you is out there waiting. Instead of obsessively mourning what could have been with your ex, consider the idea that you are now available to meet -- and fall in love with -- your true soul mate. When you close the gate on your aspirations with one person, you open yourself up to other exciting possibilities.
Woman makes pottery

Step 5

Occupy your mind.
The busier you are, the less time you have to focus on your ex. Make an honest attempt to move on in life by keeping busy. Focus on your education or career. Maintain an active social life with friends. Pursue a fascinating new interest, whether it is learning how to converse in Italian or pottery. Do what you need to do to take the spotlight off your ex, while simultaneously enriching your mind and life.
Woman mediates in yoga class

Step 6

Eliminate tension.
When you're upset about an ex and breakup, it is only natural to have a lot of excess feelings of tension and anxiety. Relax your body and mind through reflective activities such as meditation and yoga. Another option for getting all of your feelings out is to pen them in a personal journal or diary. Acknowledging your feelings can be a healthy and effective way to heal and make a change in life.

Tip

  • Have patience and give yourself time. When you feel love for another person, you cannot just turn your feelings off like a light switch. It may take a significant amount of time for your emotions to subside. Recognize that that is normal -- and do not beat yourself up if you cannot bounce back quickly.

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Warning

  • Refrain from contacting your ex. Although you may be tempted to do so in your hardest moments, all doing this will accomplish is stirring up old emotions again.

About the Author

Lars Tramilton has been writing professionally since 2007. His work has appeared in a variety of online publications, including CareerWorkstation. Tramilton received a bachelor's degree with a focus on elementary education from Kean University.