Breaking up, so the saying goes, is hard to do. Whether you’re breaking up with someone or they’re breaking up with you, it ain’t at all fun. And it doesn’t matter whether you hope to get back together with your ex, or if you’d prefer to never see them again – it still hurts. You may find yourself spinning around through many emotions – anger, sadness, despair, angst, relief, jealousy, or a toxic cocktail of all of them at once.
However, there is one thing you can do, no matter which side of the breakup you are on, no matter what you want to happen in the future, one thing that will make things better. And that is to be indifferent towards your ex.
You might think that’s crazy advice, particularly if you hope to win back your ex someday. Or maybe you are so angry and unhappy that you feel like you need to tell your ex how they made you feel by dumping you.
Trust me – it’s better to ignore them and focus on your own life, your own happiness.
Why You Should Be Indifferent
Why? Well, the reason is partly scientific, and it’s based on research on human attraction. But even before researchers looked into it, most people already knew that they were more attracted to someone they felt they couldn’t get.
So by being indifferent and keeping some silence and distance between you and your ex, you are likely to stir some curiosity in them, and some attraction. That’s just human nature. However, if you constantly call and text them, yell at them, break things, throw fits, beg them to take you back, you are just making yourself into an unattractive nuisance. Do all that stuff and you’re likely to remind them that they’re glad you broke up.
Make Yourself Happy
But I’m not recommending indifference just as a mind game you can play to try and win back your ex. I’m not really focused on that. What I’m focused on is you being happy again, with or without your ex. Happy whether or not you are in a relationship at all, although if you follow my advice you are almost certain to attract a new, quality partner in the future.
Some people truly feel that they can’t be happy unless they have a boyfriend or girlfriend. But that’s not true. And the paradox is that the best way to attract someone to be happy with is to learn to be happy without anyone.
No Contact Period
In the painful aftermath of a breakup, it’s important that you minimize all contact with your ex. By minimize I mean completely eliminate if possible. There are situations – you live together, or own property or have kids or pets together – that require some contact, but if none of those apply to you, keep silent.
By cutting off contact for a while, you not only make yourself a tiny bit more mysterious and therefore more interesting to your ex, but more importantly, you give yourself time to calm down and figure out what you really want. It will be hard at first to figure anything out given the crazy emotions you are feeling. That’s why you need some time. I suggest a bit of writing every day to help you think. Even just scribbling your feelings on a scrap of paper for ten minutes and then throwing it away will help.
After about a month of no contact, you will have a better idea how you want to proceed; whether you still want to win your ex back or have further no contact with them.
And while you’re in this period of “indifference” (I usually suggest at least a full month of no contact) you should be getting out and doing all sorts of fun and interesting things. Take a class, join a club, go to the gym, go hiking or cycling, read some good books, learn to paint or dance or sing, try sailing or bowling, take a trip – anything to stimulate your mind and allow you to have fun, particularly with other people.
By doing this you will be showing yourself that you can be happy and enjoy life on your own. That will make you more confident and therefore more attractive to others. Smart, social, active people are more attractive – that’s a fact. And by joining a club or taking a new group class at your gym, you will be meeting plenty of lively, interesting, friendly people, some of whom will make good friends and others who might be potential romantic partners. What better place to meet someone fun and interesting than in a fun and interesting social group? It’s far better than rolling the dice in some dreary pickup bar – trust me.
Let me sum up: after a breakup, it’s a good idea to minimize or completely eliminate contact with your ex. Do not send or respond to any pathetic late-night texts. Do not beg your ex to come back, or respond to their begging messages if the shoe’s on the other foot. If you don’t plan to get back together with your ex, then the best way to help both of you move forward is the same – no contact for at least a month, and probably for longer.
At the end of the day, indifference is always the right attitude towards a breakup. Sticking to that fundamental strategy can be the difference between success and failure, regardless of your overall objectives.