10 Ways to Reinvent Yourself Post-breakup

 

 

Graphic by: Shelby Wallace

Graphic by: Shelby Wallace

Shelby Wallace
Graphic Designer

We’ve all been there – the dreaded break-up. Whether you and your significant other were together for six months, two years or a decade, break-ups are hard no matter the situation.

When you go from always talking with someone, to completely removing them from your life, this can take a toll on your mental well-being. And while crying, watching “The Notebook,” and finishing off a tub of Ben & Jerry’s ice cream is to be expected, here are 10 ways to reinvent yourself post-breakup, to show your ex, exactly what they are missing out on.

  1. Clean out all your junk

This may seem like an obvious one, but you need to throw away ALL of your ex’s belongings (granted, that you’ve offered them back at least first). Whether they bought it for you or it’s a souvenir from a date, throw it all away (or at least box it all up).

Once you’ve done that, give your personal space some much-needed attention. Wash your sheets, fold that huge pile of laundry, maybe even do some vacuuming and dusting. Take your car to the car wash, get rid of clothes that don’t fit or you don’t wear. You’ll feel a thousand times better, just by making your living areas feel sparkly and brand new (just like you).

  1. Make appointments

You’ve probably been putting off that dentist appointment for a while, because hanging out with your S/O was much more important than getting that filling re-done, right? It’s time you make your appointments – and stick to them.

Once you’ve gotten all your yearly check-ups (doctor, dentist, oil change for your car, nail trim for your dog), take some time to treat yourself. Get a new haircut, or if you are feeling daring, go for that color! Get your nails done, or even a massage. The truth of the matter is, you deserve it, granted that you’ve gotten all the essentials taken care of first.

  1. Spend some time with your loved ones

The old saying goes, “We only have ourselves.” This is not quite the motto you want to live by. Everyone needs friends or family, and unlike your ex, these are the people that have your back no matter what.

Call up your grandparents, take your mom and dad out to lunch, and see your old friends that have been put on the back burner. Make amends for lost time, and if they care, they’ll understand. Thank them for being there for you. Having a good support team can do wonders in helping you realize you don’t need your ex to be a happy, wonderful you.

  1. Be healthy

Nothing makes the mind and body feel better than treating them right. It doesn’t have to be crazy, but start evaluating your current lifestyle and make a list of what you want to change. Do you want to eat better? Drink less soda? Hit the gym more? Set some health goals for yourself and stick to them. The more motivated you become on your own health, the less energy you are wasting thinking about your ex.

Pro tip: Don’t be afraid to go the gym if you’ve never been. Gyms welcome newcomers and will do whatever it takes to make you feel comfortable. Bonus: Some even have a sauna or swimming area. Nothing like relaxing in a steam room, to make all your troubles melt away.

  1. Find a hobby

Has your old canvas been collecting dust? Guitar need tuned? Or maybe you’ve always wanted to go rock climbing or learn a new language. Find your niche’, try different things. Whether it’s reading a book, or going out skydiving, find a hobby that makes you happy. Because at the end of the day, your happiness is the most important above everything else. Having a hobby can provide a sense of much-needed purpose – and also keeps you busy.

  1. Quit your addictions

Do you spend too much time at the casino? Maybe you are just obsessed with online shopping. Or perhaps, you smoke to take the edge off. Either way, addictions can be extremely harmful, and also take out funds that you could be using for something worthwhile.

Quitting an addiction is never an easy task. But, think about how your ex would feel, seeing you happy, healthy and carefree. Call your doctor, get a solid support team, and keep track of your progress. Find better alternatives to your addictions, and put that money towards a greater necessity.

  1. Educate yourself

Have you been thinking about going back to school? Or perhaps, you just want to learn more about something. Take some time to learn. Education and knowledge is very refreshing, and can potentially help you later in life! Documentaries and bookstores can be your greatest asset, but if you want to go back to college, fill out a FAFSA and call the college’s financial department.

  1. Decorate

Since you’ve thrown out all the old, it’s time for something new! Check out some flea markets, or even search on ebay or amazon. The easiest way to decorate is to buy some picture frames and fill them with pictures of your loved ones. But if you want to be more daring, try checking out posters, paintings, clocks, etc! Find what you love, and display it so that you can remind yourself who you are, every day you wake up.

  1. Make amends

This is a very hard task to do. But if you feel confident in who you are, and have learned what mistakes were made on both parties in your last relationship, perhaps it’s time to make amends. Whatever you do, do NOT go back to your ex. But making amends – telling them you had a part (however big or small) in the break up can help you feel better and set any demons to rest. They may not accept your apologies; or they may try and win you back. Either way, say your dues and walk away knowing that you are a brand new you, with a whole world waiting for you. Chances are, no matter how your ex took it, they’ll feel pretty cruddy knowing how strong you’ve become.

  1. Put yourself out there

If you feel confident in yourself, and your feelings for your ex have diminished over time, maybe you should try getting back out in the dating-scene. But make sure you are ready. There’s no rush to jump into something new, but getting back out there can boost your confidence and provide a sense of companionship that you just can’t get from friends and family. Try some dating sites (but be wary), maybe even see if your friends know of any suitable matches. Whatever you do, take it slow, take the time to get to know someone before making any commitments.

Time heals everything, and it may take you some time to try any of these steps. But once you start caring about yourself, the sadness and hurt from your breakup will start disappearing a lot faster than sitting at home, crying over them. The past is the past, and there’s nothing you can do to change that. All you can do is look forward to the future, and make yourself the best you that you can be.

shjwallace@lc.edu