I have a few friends who have recently ended long-term relationships. I also have a friend who was the one dumped after years of dating. I have another friend who is crushing on a girl who has clearly stated nothing will ever come of it and another who was dumped almost a year ago and is still caught up on her ex. All of these friends, though in different situations, are feeling the same thing: the pain and hardship of breaking up and being rejected.
The theme encompassing all of these relationship-related problems is this: my friends cannot seem to get over their exes and they want me to tell them how they can begin to enjoy their journey into single life.
My view on the matter is that being single should not be viewed as something negative but as a part of life where a person can focus on improving his or herself without the worries of considering someone else. Let’s shake the negativity associated with being single and dive into the glorious pool called “being single.”
About a year ago, I was in my friends’ shoes. I was dumped by my first love and I found it near impossible to get over this experience. It destroyed me emotionally and, in some ways, physically, and I lost the ability to trust anything close to dating because I didn’t want to get hurt. By remaining positive and optimistic for the future, however, I started a new lifestyle, one that has made me happier than any man ever has.
The first step, which was easy in my case because we had no mutual friends and he had moved away, was to disassociate myself with anything related to my ex. That’s a stretch, but in summary, I stopped hanging out with the same people, I stopped listening to songs that reminded me of him and I didn’t talk about him unless I had to. I was completely removing everything about him, about us, from my life. It worked. The one place I was allowed to talk about him was in my journal, but anywhere else was complete taboo.
The next step was to start new tasks. I gave myself projects. I picked back up guitar lessons, I overworked myself in school and at my job, and honestly, I began a never-ending party. I partied during the day and I partied at night. I met new people and formed new bonds. I experimented, hooked up and fooled around. I did it all. I had fun.
The following step in getting over the ex came easy and was an effect of the previous stated step. I started dating again. By this, I mean that I actually went on dates outside of parties. I got to know these people I was partying with better and, essentially, I learned to trust in other people, and in other guys and this all has proved to be quite beneficial for me. This is the very stage that I am still in at this point in the post-breakup cleanup and it’s been almost a year since the official end of my relationship.
All of these steps have been essential for me in getting over my past love, and these are the same words of advice that I have shared with all of my patients, err, friends. I’ve watched these friends take my advice, and they are all on roads to recovery. I remind each of them that it is a slow process and that it takes time, maybe a year for some. Hell, it may even take two or three for others, but it’s a start.