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How To Forget Your Ex (23 Little-Known Tips)

by Sonya Schwartz

No matter what the reason is for a relationship coming to an end, breaking up with someone is incredibly painful because someone you once loved is leaving your life for good. Although many people don’t realize it, breaking up with someone makes you feel a type of grief, because you have lost someone special in your life. 

When your relationship ends, you most likely think that no one has ever felt the pain you’re feeling better, and you won’t be able to see a happy future for yourself without your ex. The truth is, everyone has felt or will most likely feel the horrible bundle of emotions that surface after having their heartbroken, so there’s plenty of well-known ways you can get over an ex and move forward onto a happier life.

Although you might spend your days crying and consuming copious amounts of ice cream straight after a breakup, picking yourself up, moving forward, healing your heart and forgetting an ex is the hardest part of a relationship ending and you might still have an ex popping into your head for months after you’ve separated. So this article is full of tips to help you with getting over an ex fully, so you can forget about them and move towards living a happy life without them. 

How Can You Forget Your Ex?

1. Allow yourself time to feel all of the emotions going on.

You will never be able to fully move on and get over your ex if you don’t allow yourself time and allow yourself to feel all of the emotions you have towards the situation. A huge part of the healing process after having your heart broken is letting yourself cry, get angry, feel sorry for yourself and be sad that you’ve lost love. 

Although there’s an array of things you can do that will distract yourself into forgetting about your ex, none of these things will actually work if you don’t take the time immediately after the break up to mourn the person and the loss of the relationship. You need to get all of these emotions out of your system first so you can then start working towards forgetting about your ex with a more practical and realistic perspective. 

Don’t attempt to bottle up how you feel, because it’ll all come spilling out at some point. Instead, allow yourself time to grieve over the loss of the relationship and get deep into your feelings. Feelings of hurt and sadness will still crop up from time to time even after you’ve had this emotional cleanse, but you will have purged yourself from the initial emotional turbulence and will be able to move forward more clearly. 

2. Try to gain some perspective and see why things had to end.

Every relationship we have in our lives, whether it’s a romantic one or a platonic one, shows us something about ourselves and teaches us a lesson. If a relationship has come to an end for you, it really is for the best, no matter how hard that might be to digest. You should try to dig a little deeper and see why it had to end and figure out what this can teach you. 

Perhaps you were in a toxic relationship that was segregating you more and more from your friends and family, or maybe you were losing yourself and ignoring your life goals because you were too focused on this person. There will be a reason that this relationship had to come to an end, and once you figure out what that reason is, you will feel better about moving forward because you know that life has bigger and better things ahead for you.  

3. If they hurt you, don’t retaliate.

If they hurt you, don’t retaliate.

One of the biggest problems people face when trying to move on from a relationship that ended badly and forget about an ex is that they hold onto anger and try to retaliate to the person that hurt them. 

If your ex caused you emotional pain in any way, from cheating on you to saying nasty comments about your personality, you might want to take a shot back at them and make them feel the pain that they caused you. If you are actively trying to hurt them, you will never be able to move on from them, because you’re still connected to them and spending your time focusing on them. Instead, try to channel your anger towards your ex into something more useful. 

One of the best ways to release these emotions is to take a pen and paper and write a letter to your ex, explaining everything and saying whatever you like. However, rather than sending this letter and opening up a connection with them, burn the letter. All of the anger and heated emotion that you put into the letter will feel released. If this doesn’t work, you can always try kickboxing or do a few classes in martial arts, allowing your physical body to release emotional anger.

4. Don’t be tempted to message them.

We all know what it’s like when you’re laying in bed late at night and you miss the arms of the person you love being wrapped around you, so you put together a beautifully worded message to them telling them how much you miss them. Or perhaps you’ve had one too many glasses of wine and you need to tell your ex exactly what you think about them, so you pull out your phone and type an alcohol-fuelled angry paragraph. Don’t do it! 

To forget your ex, you need to make sure that you don’t have any communication with them at all. You need to forget about this person, so the last thing you want to do is message them, regardless of what the message says. After a breakup, the only thing you should have to message your ex about is swapping each other’s personal items or practical things. 

If you feel like there are certain triggers to you sending them a message, try to avoid them or control it. For example, if you are having a few drinks with your girlfriends but you know that you will want to message your ex after you’re a few glasses of wine in, give your phone to one of your friends to look after.

5. Delete them off your social media accounts.

The last thing you want to see when you’re trying to forget your ex is their face popping up on your Facebook newsfeed, so make sure you don’t have to see this by blocking them or deleting them off Facebook, Instagram and any other social media you have. In addition, get that relationship status changed! 

By deleting them off sites such as Facebook, you are also making the chance that you’ll want to message them much lower. Even if you do want to message them or see their social media profile, you will have to go onto your account settings and go through the process of unblocking them or re-adding them. Hopefully, during this time you will realize that it’s a bad idea to get in contact with them again or have stalked their profile. 

If you are planning on being friends with this person at some point in the future and the end of your relationship wasn’t messy, you can always let them know that you will be blocking them or deleting them off your social media so that you can deal with what’s happened the best way.

However, keep in mind that doing this means you’ll want to get in contact with them again. Also, you need to understand that you don’t owe them anything, so you can block them on Instagram or unfriend them on Facebook without any hesitation and if you want to be their friend in the future, and that’s meant to be, they won’t be offended.

6. Don’t meet up with them, even if you have mutual friends.

In order for you to forget about your ex, you need to keep in mind that you can’t see them. Make sure that once you have exchanged personal items, moved out from living together, or had the final goodbye, you don’t meet up with them again. You might hear about couples that have broken up meeting up and indulging in one steamy night together again, but this never works and only causes pain and takes you back to the first stages of a breakup. Both of you need to create space for yourselves, without seeing each other, so that you can fully heal from the end of the relationship and forget about each other. 

Not meeting up or seeing your ex can be particularly difficult if you have mutual friends, but there are ways you can get around it. If your friendship group is planning to meet up, make sure that you have asked ahead if your ex will be there. If your ex is going to be there, don’t go. 

Don't worry though, it doesn’t mean that you have to ostracize yourself from your friendship group, instead, you will just have to work out a way to see them without your ex. All of your friends will understand and will make sure they still see you whilst keeping in mind that you don’t want to be around your ex. 

7. Don’t listen to love songs.

When you’re in the first stage of a breakup and you’re letting yourself feel all of your emotions, you have every right to listen to romantic music and break up songs, after all, this is why they were written. However, once you’re past this stage and you’re on the road to healing your broken heart, you will need to change your music taste. Instead of listening to soppy, romantic music, you need to switch it up and start listening to independent, bad-ass music that lifts you up and makes you happy

You need to remove any music that reminds you of your ex from your daily playlist because there’s honestly nothing worse than having a great day and putting some music on only to find that you end up crying and reminiscing on all the good times you listened to those songs with your ex. You can find tonnes of incredible, uplifting, and powerful independent women playlists online that will help you to feel empowered.

8. Realize that your relationship wasn’t all rainbows and butterflies.

Whenever we look back on past relationships or previous memories, we always tend to be looking through rose-tinted spectacles. We forget all of the arguments we had, the pain we felt, and all of those times we were certainly not having the time of our lives and instead we focus on the happiest memories and the times we felt true joy. Of course, you can appreciate the happiness that you had in the relationship, but you also need to be realistic and realize that throughout the relationship there were hard times and the way you felt wasn’t always magical.

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As soon as you understand that your relationship wasn’t perfect and actually had many flaws, you will find it easier to put an end to the reminiscing. You will stop missing your ex so much when you realize that they didn’t actually make you that happy and you can take them off the pedestal that you have so highly placed them on.    

9. Get rid of, or donate, all of the items that remind you of them.

There’s no point in doing all of the inner work that’s required to heal yourself from a break up if you are constantly surrounded by items that remind you of your previous relationship. You might love that teddy bear that your ex boyfriend bought you on your first date, but every time you look at it doesn’t it remind you of him? It will, and that’s exactly why you need to get rid of it. Anything your ex ever gave to you or anything you shared in a home together needs to go so that you no longer have to live in the past. If you can, try to donate the items to a local charity rather than throwing them into the waste.

There might be some things of high monetary value, or perhaps photo albums that you don’t want now but feel like you want to look at in the next few years, so if you do have certain things that you know you definitely want to keep, you could gift them to a friend for the moment or move them into the loft so that you don’t have to see them and be reminded of your ex every day. 

10. Find a role model.

If you’re going through a tough time, which you will be after a breakup, one of the best things that can help you through it will be looking at someone else who has been through the same situation and come out the other side stronger - your ideal role model. 

Find yourself a role model who has been through a similar type of break up and is currently living their best life doing the things that you admire. This role model could be a friend that you can talk to and look up to, it could be a celebrity that you don’t have to communicate with but you can see what they did to get to where they are now or it could even be a character from a TV show or movie. It doesn’t matter who this person is that you look up to, as long as they can help you through this breakup and can inspire you to be the person you want to be, follow them.

11. Don’t drown your sorrows.

When you’re dealing with a breakup, one of the easiest options for dealing with the emotions you’re facing is to drown your sorrows and forget about everything you’re having to deal with. Most people will drown their sorrows with alcohol, drugs, or sex. All of these options are quite possibly the worst things to do when you’re trying to heal yourself and forget about your ex. 

If you get drunk, high, or have meaningless sex with anyone, keep in mind that all you’re doing is running away from your pain and trying to cover it up. You need to be able to deal with your problems and emotions head-on, without trying to brush over it. If you go down this path of drowning your sorrows, you will self-destruct.

Your self value is higher than bottling up your emotions and destroying your body and mind, so the next time you feel like heading to the club to drink tequila and end up in bed with a stranger, perhaps head to a coffee shop with your journal and a best friend instead.

12. Surround yourself with a loved one.

Going from being in a relationship one day to being alone the next is incredibly difficult, and surrounding yourself with family members and friends is essential. In order to get yourself through a breakup, you need to make sure you’re with people that make you feel secure, loved, and supported so you have the strength to do the inner work needed to heal and about your past love. Not only will it feel great to spend time with your loved ones, but they also provide a shoulder to cry on, they will comfort you and give you advice. 

After a breakup, you simply can’t allow yourself to be around people that don’t have your best interests in mind, otherwise, you will find it easy to be dragged down. Keep in mind that this could be a great time to cut ties with anyone in your life that is negative, holding you back or toxic, so that you’re moving forward with only the best people around you. 

13. Get immersed in doing something you enjoy.

It’s no secret that after a relationship comes to an end you should keep busy to help you forget about your ex. Instead of sitting around the house thinking about what an amazing relationship you had and eating your way through a tub of Ben and Jerry’s, why not take up a hobby that you’ve always been interested in. 

Alternatively, if you’ve been distracted in the relationship from your goals, now is a great time to get working towards them. Perhaps you want to get that promotion at work or you want to become an artist - now’s the time to do work towards aspirations and get completely immersed in doing something you love. You’ll find that your mind will become so busy with doing what makes you happy that your ex will start to occupy your mind less and less.

14. Treat yourself to new clothes.

Your life has undoubtedly changed, and so what better time to change up your style. A break up is the perfect time to take yourself out shopping and treat yourself to beautiful new clothes, accessories, or beauty products! It can be really exciting to really think about what you want to buy, what parts of your style you’re going to change up, and how you want to look. 

You can even create a vision board for your desired look and make the shopping trip a full experience. You might even want to try an idea that your partner was never supportive of, like dyeing your hair or getting your nose pierced - you are your own woman and you’re completely free to dress and present yourself however makes you feel the most beautiful. Whilst you’re out shopping, it might be a great idea to pick up a few face masks and at home spa products to treat yourself to a cozy night in with your girlfriends.

15. Change up your home - redesign and decorate.

Although getting rid of your ex-partner’s items that make you think of them is a great place to start, you might want to change up the decoration of your room or home to give it a completely new look to your fresh start

You’re a single woman now, and therefore you will probably want to make your space more feminine and suit your individual style. Similar to changing up your style or buying new clothes, you might find it fun to plan out how you want your new home to look by taking inspiration from sites such as Pinterest. Then you can go out and buy all of the homeware items needed to beautify your space and get to work recreating your home without your partner’s old, outdated influence.

16. Learn to love yourself instead of loving someone else.

One of the most beautiful things that will come out of a break up will be the fact you will find a new love for yourself. Whilst you were in the past relationship, you might have got lost and started to love your ex more than you loved yourself, or you might have even forgotten how to love yourself because you were so busy trying to make someone else happy

The only person you need to focus on now is yourself, and although this might seem upsetting at first, there is such beauty and magic in learning who you really are and giving yourself the love you deserve. Learning to fully love and accept yourself takes a lot of work and time, but the first thing you need to do is just promise that you love yourself and always will.

You might find it helpful to take a look online at self-esteem, body confidence, self-love coaches or inspirations, and start to take their advice on joining the path to self-discovery and self-love. Read self-help books, start to journal, meditate, and try to get more in tune with your inner soul. If you love yourself, nothing can stand in the way of your own happiness. In addition, if you’re looking for a new relationship in the future, self-love is sexy and men love confidence.

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17. Create daily routines.

When you’re trying to forget your ex, or you’re figuring out how to get over your ex in your own way, you will have bad days and good days. Sometimes you might leap out of bed and have an awesome, productive day where you’ve only briefly thought about the breakup and other days you might surface from your bed at midday to grab chocolate and head back into your comfy pit of despair. 

One of the easiest ways to ensure you have more good days than bad days during this time is to create daily routines. Almost like a to-do list, you can hold yourself accountable for the things you have to every day. 

You can put anything on your daily routine from ‘get up at 7 am’ to ‘workout for 20 mins’ and every day you will keep in mind that you have to cross everything, or at least 90% of these things, off every day. If you find it difficult to hold yourself to account, try to get a friend involved. It’s a nice idea to give yourself some kind of reward once you’ve completed everything on your list each day. 

18. Take yourself on dates, or do date night with friends.

Take yourself on dates, or do date night with friends

One of the best parts of being in a relationship is having someone to date and go and do exciting things with. However, you don’t need to miss these things just because you’re single and not ready to start dating someone else yet, you can still date - date yourself or enjoy mates dates. Being single will hopefully make you a more independent and confident person. Have you ever taken yourself to grab a coffee alone with a book? Have you ever been to a restaurant by yourself? If not, you’re missing out! 

This is the perfect time to try new things and enjoy dating yourself. If you don’t feel comfortable enough to try and do things by yourself just yet, you can enjoy date nights with friends until then. 

19. Join groups or clubs that do something you’re interested in.

When you have gone through a breakup, it’s important to get back out there and meet new people. It’s essential to say that this doesn’t mean jumping straight back onto the dating scene. Instead, it means that you simply need to get yourself back out into the world and meet new people - you can’t stay wrapped in your duvet forever! Joining clubs or groups that do a hobby that you’re interested in is a great way to surround yourself with people that will share common interests whilst doing something that keeps the mind busy.

Getting out of the house and doing something new with people that you don’t know will not only be exciting and fresh, but it will help you to regain trust in people after being hurt.

20. Travel and explore the world.

Have you ever wanted to travel anywhere in particular? Are you craving being immersed in another culture and a complete change? 

This could be the perfect time to enjoy some solo travel or plan a trip with your friends. With the world now being so interconnected, there are so many opportunities and different kinds of travel available to you. The saying ‘a change is as good as a rest’ really is true, and travel can be one of the best kinds of changes available to us. So if you’ve always wanted to visit a particular country, now’s the time to book a flight and jet off.

21. Create goals for your future.

Were you really fulfilling all of your life goals in your previous relationship? Perhaps you don’t have any idea of what your ideal future looks like? 

Now is the time to start thinking about what you really want out of life. You have the time available to you to really sit and think about where you want to be in five years’ time, what kind of career you want to or what kind of person you want to become. Without the distraction of someone’s life directly impacting your own, you can open your eyes and plan a life for yourself. 

You might want to start making vision boards about your future goals, looking into different jobs, or researching new places to live. Don’t look back at what could’ve been, instead look forward,  figure out what you want and find a way you can start working towards it.

22. Be open to the idea of a new relationship.

You should only actively start dating anyone new once you really feel in your heart that it’s time to move forward. You’ll know when you’ve reached this point and you will have fully let go of your ex and the relationship that you had. 

However, even if you’re not at that stage of moving on, you still need to be open to the idea of meeting someone, getting into a relationship, and having a future. You need to believe that you will have the perfect love story with someone, and it’s ok that it’s not going to be with your ex. 

Be open to the fact you might meet someone spontaneously and sparks might fly, and never hold yourself back from falling in love with someone new because you feel like you’re doing your ex wrong.

23. Keep an eye on your emotions and get help if needed.

Breakups are really tough and your feelings will be all over the place. Sometimes trying to work through everything by yourself just isn’t enough to pull you out the other side as a happy person that’s let go. So keep your feelings in mind and monitor them to see how you’re improving and how the break up is affecting you. 

If you feel continually and constantly miserable and don’t see a way out of feeling how you do, it might be a good idea to look for a professional to help you work through everything. Therapists might be able to show you how to get over an ex in a way that suits you perfectly and you might just have needed a bit of help in order to let go. 

FAQs

How do you stop thinking about your ex?

Training your brain to stop thinking about your ex is really hard, especially if you still have feelings for them. You can use the tips in this article to help you to forget your ex, but you need to understand that getting over an ex is difficult. Just keep faith that as long as you have worked through your feelings in the best way you can, you’re keeping yourself busy and surrounding yourself with love and positivity, you will get there. 

How do you get over an ex you still love?

The tips in this article show you how to get over an ex in more detail, but overall there are a few things you can do to forget an ex and live your life without them. You need to make sure you have worked through any feelings you still have for them by doing inner work and by allowing yourself to feel your feelings fully, no matter how they feel. You should then take them out of your life completely, right from deleting their email address to avoiding gatherings where they will be. Over time, you will start to realize that if it was true love, it wouldn’t have ended.

Is it possible to forget ex?

You’re never going to forget about a person that was in your life and the memories that you shared with them, but you can forget about them in a way that they don’t affect your daily life. You will always remember them, but if you work hard at moving forward you can forget them and push them to the back of your mind so much that you have to think really hard if you want to remember them.

Why you should forget your ex?

You need to forget an ex and move on with your life so that you are open to a new love in the future. If you are constantly and continually thinking about an ex, you will never be able to let go and move on with your life. Instead, you will be stuck in the past, when you actually need to look towards the future.

Why am I thinking about my ex?

If you have recently broken up with your ex or this is the first time you have had a relationship, you will be thinking about your ex because they were a part of your life and now they’re not. Thinking about your ex doesn’t mean you should get back with them, it just means that you need to figure out how to get over an ex and forget. Also, if you constantly try to forget your ex, you might find that you think about them more. Try not to focus on forgetting them, but more on doing things you enjoy and being surrounded by those you love.

In A Nutshell

Forgetting your ex is and moving forward with your life is a really difficult thing to do and everyone deals with it in a different way, but if you take on board all of the tips listed here, you should be able to move forward faster and more easily. Don’t give up hope because one day you will realize that you’ve forgotten about them and the heartbreak that occurred in this breakup was only temporary. 

Did you like this article? If you did, let us know in the comments and share it with your friends.

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Sonya Schwartz
A hopeless romantic that struggled for many years to find her Mr "Right" and made all the mistakes you could think of while dating. Known for always choosing the wrong guys or messing up relationships, Sonya was finally able to change her approach and mindset when it came to dating which helped her eventually find the man of her dreams and become happily married. You can read more about me here...

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