Here’s a complicated dilemma worthy of a soap opera – you and your partner have broken up but you still live together and … wait for it … you want them back.
You know that ignoring an ex is a good way to win them back, but how can you possibly ignore someone when your lives and living spaces are intertwined?
It ain’t easy, but what’s important is to apply the principles of ignoring someone — to the point when there’s only “minimal contact” — to cohabitation.
If you’re obsessing over your ex, sending angry or miserable texts and emails, calling them at all hours, screaming outside their window, crying, whatever, you aren’t able to clear your mind and calm your own toxic emotions.
Furthermore, it helps to re-set your ex’s feelings about you and about your breakup… this is what I call “emotional neutral”.
You need your ex to think of you as attractive, desirable, and the best option for him or her… and being needy, begging, pleading, or any behaviours such as those will have the opposite affect.
But since you live together, what can you do?
Minimize Interactions With Your Ex Where Possible
In this unusual situation, you need to focus on the essence of the ignoring strategy – the positive reasons for it. You’re not ignoring your ex to hurt them or to teach them a lesson. You’re ignoring them because it is the best thing for both of you. You’re ignoring them so you can focus on yourself for a while.
You will not be able to avoid your partner completely if you live together. Basic politeness and conversations about taking out the garbage or washing the dishes or shopping can’t be shirked. But beyond basic requirements like that, you should not interact with your partner for at least a month.
Be Polite & Avoid Arguments
Don’t cause any unnecessary arguments or conflict (or allow your ex to pull you into any drama). Be polite, and although your goal is to avoid talking with your ex, you shouldn’t ignore him or her if doing so will make them upset or be unreasonable in the context of the situation.
If your asks you to help out with paying this month’s utility bills, for instance, it would be rude and cause unnecessary conflict if you ignore that request… instead, politely hand over your portion of the cost and exit the situation as quickly as possible without appearing awkward or rude.
Get Out There And Live Your Life
Get up early and get out of the house. Don’t come straight home after work. Find something else to do. Go to the gym, or join one if you don’t already belong. And don’t just sweat solo in the weight room – join a group exercise class where you can suffer with plenty of other people and get to know them.
Remember, you aren’t working out to impress anyone, or to get revenge on your ex by getting in shape. You are working out for yourself, to make yourself feel better, and to remind yourself that you are important.
Find some other activities that will keep you out of the house in the evenings and on weekends. Take classes at your local community center or college – try something you’ve always wanted to learn. Don’t be afraid to try anything – sailing, rock climbing, cooking, calligraphy, dancing, singing, bicycle repair, archery, painting, photography, a book club, literature class, foreign language. The point is to get out and enjoy yourself with other people. This reminds you that you are a fun and interesting person and that it is possible for you to enjoy life without your ex.
If you’ve been out living and enjoying your life, taking classes and using your time productively, having fun with other people, then you have done all you can to make yourself as attractive as possible. Although physical appearance is important in attraction and relationships, it isn’t the most important factor. After all, your ex must be physically attracted to you already, since you got together in the first place.
The real thing that makes you attractive, whether to your ex or to a new partner, is your enjoyment of life, your joy at new experiences, your smile and your happiness. Show them you’re still the awesome person they originally fell in love with!