Whatever the reason why you broke up, it doesn't change the fact that it hurts. After a breakup, we're going through pain, confusion, anger, regret - and every emotion seems to be amplified.
Friends will often say things like, "stop thinking about it" or "soon you won't even remember it," and it just ends up having the opposite of the effect they're looking for. The worst part is you know that a lot of the things you hear aren't actually wrong.
Of course, it's not like you need a reminder that breakups hurt. However, it is important to understand how natural and real the pain is, and that it doesn't mean you are weak. Recent studies have revealed that our brain's reaction to rejection is not that different from when we feel physical pain. Not only do physical pain and rejection affect the same part of the brain, but they both also result in the brain releasing natural painkillers.
The bottom line is that the pain is very real even if it's just in your "head" (brain).
One of the most common things we experience after a breakup is the desire to be with our ex. We miss them more than we thought we could. And then we often start wondering if they're missing us too. There are some signs you can look out for to find out if your ex is thinking about you, but even if you're not on their mind right now; there are guaranteed ways that you can make them start missing you again.
Two major parts play a role in getting your ex to miss you again:
It's time to address the elephant in the room. Breakups don't come out of nowhere (unless there was some kind of cheating involved). And since you're looking for ways to get your ex to miss you, it's probably a reasonable assumption that you weren't the one who initiated the breakup.
Whether you got dumped, or you both "mutually" decided to end things or "take a break", the truth is that your ex wasn't getting everything they wanted from you and the relationship. Maybe that means you're not the same person they fell for when you started dating, or maybe it means that they've outgrown you. Regardless, the implication is the same, you need to improve - be the best version of yourself.
To become the best version of yourself, you need time. And towards this goal, you have to minimize any distractions. That includes thinking about your ex. Yes, you're doing all this for your ex, but if you spend most of your time thinking about them, trying to get them to talk to you, stalking them on social media, etc., you will just be delaying your own progress. Besides the time constraint, there's also the fact that
You have to refocus your goals and passions. Participate in things that you know will make you happy and feel alive. When you got into your relationship, you probably stopped doing certain hobbies as often as before. Maybe you even sidelined some important goals of yours. Well, it's finally time to start paying attention to what matters.
Like your hobbies and goals, there's a chance that the relationship also resulted in you neglecting some important people in your life. This is a great time to rebuild your bonds with them. Just be mindful not to "ask too much" of a friend. You want to enjoy their company, not use them as a bandaid.
Spend time looking at who you really are, what you really want, and what you have to offer in a relationship. Start writing your thoughts in a journal - it doesn't have to be a book, you can do it online, even just make private posts on social media. The importance of journaling cannot be overstated. Research indicates that writing about positive aspects of the break-up can increase positive emotions, and do so without an increase in negative emotions (link).
Right after a breakup, almost everything that surrounds us can end up reminding us of our ex and the pain we're feeling from the breakup. Oftentimes, taking a trip out of town is a great way to cut out all the reminders. Planning a trip with a couple of good friends is a great idea as you'll also get to spend more time with people
### Be who your ex fell for (if not better) Your ex fell for you once, and there's a good chance you can make it happen again. But only if you can get back to the person they initially fell in love with. But why stop there? Why not be better? We should always be going through life striving to be better than we were before. And who's to say that your ex hasn't grown? If you aim to only be as good as you were, you may still fall short.
Meeting new people can be fun and invigorating. It's a great way to build confidence as well as learn more about yourself. And by expanding your social circle, you will quickly fill up your calendar with various plans and events - keeping you busy and your mind off your ex. Also, if your regular group of friends includes your ex or reminds you of your ex, spending time with new people is a great alternative.
You need to enjoy your day-to-day life. And you need to make yourself well-rounded and interesting as a person - makes it more likely for your ex to miss you. Learning something new will also put you outside your comfort zone and help in making you more confident and attractive.
This won't apply to everyone, but if you don't mind it, you should think about seeing other people once you're ready. Depending on how your breakup went, this could help you a lot in rebuilding our confidence and healing yourself. Keep in mind this isn't about making your ex jealous. It's about you. In fact, they don't even have to find out about it if you'd like.
### Have Fun The bottom line is to have fun and discover parts of yourself that you weren't aware of. And by steadily pushing yourself out of your comfort zone, you will find your confidence skyrocketing.
It's often tempting to let ourselves go when we're feeling down. And it's not uncommon for most of us to pack on a few extra pounds right after the breakup. That's why it's even more important to be a little more vigilant, exercise a little more self-control, and do your best to maintain a healthy, balanced diet.
A healthy diet is best accompanied by some exercise. This can drastically affect your chances of making your ex miss you, too. The better shape you're in, the more attractive you'll feel and look. Also, remember how I mentioned above that our brain releases natural painkillers as a way to combat rejection (breakup)? Well, it just so turns out that exercise can boost your brain's natural opioids (link).
Shutting yourselves away from the world after a breakup is common. And that's usually just the first step in our decline. Next thing you know, you haven't taken a shower in 3 days and your hair looks like a bird's nest. In short, it's not a good look, and it's definitely contributing to how low you're feeling too. Make sure to groom yourself - get a new haircut, maybe get your nails done, etc. The point is, keep yourself tip-top - not only will you look your best, but you'll also feel your best.
You don't need a completely new wardrobe or a makeover. But you might enjoy it. Wearing some new clothes or trying out a new style is going to make you look different and feel more confident. You don't have to go crazy with it, either.
### Ne Plus Ultra Literally meaning "not further beyond," ne plus ultra refers to the highest point capable of being attained, or the most perfect something can be. Your goal isn't just to be as good as you were when you started dating. Your goal should be to be the best you can be. Period.
The first part focused on working on yourself and generally staying away from your ex. But the space has to be broken down at some point if you want them to miss you (and eventually win them back). And you need to break this space in a systematic fashion or it could jeopardize all the work you've been putting into yourself.
You'll be gradually going through different stages to get to the final goal of winning them back - reigniting the first spark again, building a sense of longing, capitalizing on the fear of missing out, etc - and we can separate them into two main categories.
We're talking about maintaining space and that begins with no contact. Earlier we covered why no contact is so important for you to become the best you can be. But it's also crucial to let your ex be the person who can actually miss you. The breakup would've been hard for the both of you, and the negativity from it isn't going to suddenly disappear. If you try to engage your ex while the feelings of negativity are still fresh, it will just reinforce those negative feelings. That is why it's crucial that you wait until those negative feelings disperse, and only then make contact.
Social media is a great tool to sow the seeds of reconnection. Since you both won't be in contact via phone, messages, etc, social media is a great way to cross over the fence. If you both still follow each other on social media, your ex is probably going to check up on your posts every once in a while. By posting regular updates and stories, you can make your ex think about you and wonder what you're up to. You can post pictures with new friends, and doing new activities to make them feel a bit jealous. Or you could even post photos taken at spots you shared with your ex. There are a lot of possibilities. If your ex isn't that active in social media, don't worry - he probably has a lot of friends who are, and they'll keep him informed on what you're up to. If you've never been much of a social media person, that's fine. You can start small - remember, trying new activities is part of this process too.
Once you're ready, start hanging out with mutual friends. Make sure it's people you actually like. Spend time with them, enjoy their company, and tell them all the great things that are going on in your life. The next time they're with your ex, they will share what you told them.
If you're up for it, starting to date new people will probably pique your ex's interest. Especially if it's someone they know. However, it's imperative to keep your priorities in order. Your desires take precedence, not the chance to make your ex a little jealous. Don't just date to get a reaction out of them. Date if you really want to.
### Run into them organically Running into an ex after a period of no contact is sometimes a very smooth way to start talking again. Even if you guys don't start talking right after, it's going to help make them miss you. Especially if you've been putting in all the work on yourself the past couple months. Arranging to run into your ex isn't very easy though. Recruiting the help of your friends would be a good idea. Maybe your ex likes to visit a specific place often.
Once you've waited through the no contact period, worked on yourself, waited for your ex to be ready to make contact, etc., the easiest way to establish contact is by a text message (or direct message on social media, like Instagram or Facebook). What exact platform you use (Instagram, SMS, WhatsApp, etc) depends on what was most comfortable for you both.
You guys have been going through No Contact for a while, and you're trying to make sure your first bit of contact comes across comfortable, not awkward. This is why you can't just leave a random message. There should be purpose and intent behind the text you send. eg: "I just found out Your-Favorite-Band is releasing a new album! I still won't forget you made us walk two miles in rain to see them perform lol."
When you're just re-establishing contact, it's important to not scare your ex. Play it cool, be friendly, polite, keep everything simple at first. If it makes it easier, try to treat her how you treat your other friends.
Reaching out to your ex on special dates, like their birthday or New Year, is a great way to subtly express affection. These gestures will let your ex know that they're still on your mind without it seeming like they're the only thing you think about.
### Show/Tell them how awesome your life is You've been working hard these past couple months to turn your life up to the max. And it's finally time to let your ex in on it. Besides posting regular updates on social media to pique his interest, once you guys make contact, make sure to tell him about stuff too. Not only will it make him think about how he could be part of your awesome life, it'll prompt him to open up more about his current life too.
Check out these other articles that may interest you:
Why Did My Ex Break Up With Me?
14 More Reasons You and Your Ex Broke up
Signs He Doesn't Want To Marry You
Warning Signs He Is Losing Interest (And What To Do About It)
Want guaranteed results? Click here to chat with a Relationship Coach who will help you figure out exactly what's going on through your ex's mind and how you can win them back.