The time immediately following the shock of a breakup and the time of a mad obsession are driven by the overflow of stress chemicals released by your brain in response to what is happening to you. This is a time when you are likely to act crazy! Breakup chemistry is insanity chemistry. Temper your stirred-up emotions by sticking to the following 10 pieces of breakup advice.
1. Stay away from him : Don’t be a fool. Don’t contact him or try to get him back. Why not? Because you can’t convince someone to love you. It takes two to start or rekindle a romance. Your behavior is a factor but your behavior (whatever you do) is not going to be able to cast a spell on your ex and miraculously make him change his mind.
2. Write a bitch list : List everything you can think of that your ex did that hurt your feelings. Write every little thing, don‘t hold back. Above all, don‘t make excuses or let him off the hook. Be real. Exactly how did your ex disappoint you? For example: “He looked at other women when we were together,” or “She didn’t want me to call her ‘my girlfriend.'"
3. Eat serotonin food : The process of your breakup recovery can be supported or stunted by the foods you eat. Your brain chemistry has many different players, none more important to breakup recovery than serotonin. Very simply stated, when your serotonin levels are low, you are more depressed and when they‘re high, you‘re happier. To increase your levels of serotonin, fill up on turkey, bananas, milk, yogurt, cheese, eggs, nuts, and beans.
4. Mix things up : You can minimize emotional pain by changing your environment. Regardless of whether your home reminds you of your ex, try moving furniture around. Put a colorful piece of cloth over an old chair. Rearrange something in the kitchen, bathroom, and office.
5. Meditate for 15 minutes . Practice disconnecting from your thoughts and letting them go. Deep relaxation and meditation allow the parasympathetic nervous system to become active by down-regulating the sympathetic nervous system. What happens is that once the sympathetic nervous system shuts down, the inhibitory neurotransmitter gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) no longer is prevented from acting on the GABA receptors that are present everywhere in the nervous system.
Don’t know how to meditate? Set the timer for 15 minutes and simply sit quietly. Your job is to just keep yourself company for that 15-minute shower of brain soothing chemicals. See if you can feel your body downshift as the time goes by.
6. Have fun making up funny breakup lines . Some examples:
- I let myself go hoping you’d leave.
- I’m not a prude, it’s just that you’re repulsive.
- It’s not you. It’s the new guy I’ve been seeing.
- I love you but I just don’t want to be limited to one sexual partner.
- I have a hard time expressing my feelings. Get the f*ck out of my house.
- I am so not into you that it bores me to tears to spend five minutes with you.
- You’re a great guy. I am looking for a jerk.
- It’s kind of weird dating you. Let’s break up.
- I pee in pools. Let’s break up.
- Roses are red. Violets are blue. I’d rather be dead than continue seeing you.
- My mom told me to stay away from boys. Let’s break up.
7. Think about him in a negative light: Imagine how other women would be repelled by your ex. Forget about the traits that people might fall for. Everyone has some bad trait or other. Imagine him in a dating situation where he shares this with a new woman. How does she react?
8. Get rid of his clothing or other physical reminders of him: Just pack everything up and get it out of your living space. Let a friend keep the bag if you cannot let the things go. Get everything about him out of your space!
9. Punish him (in your thoughts) : Imagine your ex paying the price for your breakup and heartbreak. Picture him in a black and white "Jailhouse Rock" kind of outfit. See him behind bars pining for freedom.
10. Take a supplement : If you have trouble sleeping during this time, you might try taking a Benadryl. While Benadryl is normally only to be taken for allergies, it is also a relatively harmless sleeping aid. Alternatively, plan to ask your doctor for an antidepressant or a sleeping aid.
Berit "Brit" Brogaard is the author of On Romantic Love .