I tell my clients that, if you want to let go of your ex, once and for all, you must go ‘no contact.’ And the first thing that I usually hear back is ‘ugh.’
What do I mean by ‘no contact?’ Blocking them on your phone, unfriending and unfollowing them, staying away from places you might see them, not letting them sneak back in through any back doors.
In the old days, when we broke up with someone, it was much easier to let them go. We didn’t have access to an assortment of social media platforms where we could check up on our exes. We couldn’t google stalk them. We couldn’t text them when the urge struck. Unless we ran into them somewhere, they would truly be out of sight.
And out of sight means out of mind. And out of mind helped us move on.
I know things are different now but the need to move on is the same so, if you want to let go of your ex, ‘no contact’ is essential.
1. You will go back to Day One.
The number one reason to go no contact is because, with every point of contact that you have, you go back to day one, to that last moment you saw them, that moment that you walked away in incredible pain.
I use the analogy of trying to quit smoking. When you decide to quit something, you go cold turkey. You take it day by day and as the days pass the pain of the loss gets less and less. And then, one day down the road, you decide to have one cigarette. And it’s hard to have just one cigarette. Before you know it, you are smoking half a pack a day, knowing that soon you are going to have to go through the pain of quitting all over again.
Similarly, if you are getting a little bit better each day, even if you miss your ex, looking at them on social media or sending them a text, will set you back to the beginning, back at the bottom of the mountain that you had made good progress scaling.
And you don’t want that, do you?
2. Memories can be painful. And compelling.
If you want to let go of your ex but are struggling to do so, memories are things that might be holding you back.
Unfortunately, after a breakup, what we usually hold onto is the good memories and not the bad ones. The good memories were wonderful times but reliving them constantly makes it hard to move on.
Social media and our phones are full of opportunities for us to rekindle those memories. There are Instagram posts of your trip to Mexico and FB messenger text streams from when you were first talking. Your phone contains selfies of everything that you ever did. And you want more of those memories because they were so wonderful. So, you reach out.
I believe that going no contact means getting rid of those opportunities to rekindle memories, getting rid of the pain that those memories can lead to. Unfollow them on Instagram, unfriend them on Facebook and file away those selfies to a place you can’t easily access them.
If you don’t relive those memories, in whatever form, healing will be quicker and less painful.
3. Closure is a myth.
I 100% think that closure is a myth. I believe that closure is just one more opportunity to be in your person’s presence and perhaps convince them to give you another chance.
If you are in contact with your person, the inclination, for either one of you, to try to get some closure is greatly enhanced.
And what will that closure do? It will open up old wounds that need to be hashed out. Tempers might flare and hurting things might be said. Being in the same personal space as your person might lead to intimacy which will only cause more confusion. You might walk away from it more devastated than you were before.