As all of us probably know, breakups are really hard to get over. They can be messy, heartbreaking, aggravating and bring about terrible feelings of depression and anxiety. Besides, millennials break up with their partners a lot more than any other generation before them. If the relationship is long, and you probably hoped it would go somewhere further, watching it end is even more devastating than any other breakup.
However, there are things you can do to avoid falling into the pit of depression after a relationship ends. You might be annoyed with everyone telling you to keep up your positive thinking and that there’s a lot of fish in the sea, etc. However, there definitely are some concrete things you can look to do to avoid getting stuck in that pitfall of depression – or, to be precise, some things you should definitely NOT do. Take a look at some things to avoid right after your breakup to help you get back into your positive space sooner.
Here Are 7 Things Never to Do After a Breakup to Avoid Depression
“Do not brood over your past mistakes and failures as this will only fill your mind with grief, regret and depression. Do not repeat them in the future.” – Swami Sivananda
1. Don’t stay friends
That’s probably a lot easier said than done. You always think it’s possible, but in reality, only in very, very rare cases do people actually stay friends after a breakup. Most of the time, if you start making plans about “keeping in touch” or staying friends, it’s because you want to get back together with them.
The best way to deal with this ended relationship is to rip it off (quickly, like a band-aid). The less contact you have with them, the less you’ll be thinking about could-have-beens. Besides, it’ll be a lot easier if you don’t have to see them – because it means you can move on with your life!
2. Don’t overeat to forget
It’s one of the very first things people think to do after a breakup – whip out the Chinese takeaway and spend all day indoors, gorging on all kinds of unhealthy food. However, it has been proven that bad nutrition can also have a detrimental effect on your mental health.
So as tempting as it is to stay at home all day and eat a tub of ice cream like Bridget Jones, make an effort to eat healthy because it will do wonders for your disposition. Eating healthy also helps you to avoid depression.
3. Don’t make drastic changes
A lot of people decide to do something sudden and extreme after their breakup because they want a “new me.” Whether it’s shaving your head, getting your nose pierced, or getting a tattoo, you probably feel the urge to change your body as a symbol you are leaving everything behind. However, in a few years, when you look at your piercing or tattoo, it will only remind you of the bad reasons why you did it.
Instead, try to change your personality – sign up for a crafts class, or learn a new language. Don’t just try to be different because you crave the attention your relationship used to give you.
4. Don’t say, “It’s Complicated”
It’s very tempting because it’s the neutral option – even Facebook acknowledges it. However, that’s nothing more than a form of denial. Don’t be afraid to use the word “single” to describe yourself. If you need to, visit some motivational Instagram tags, or find some funny memes about single people. However, the sooner you’re ready to accept your identity as a single person, the sooner you’ll be able to get back out there and fight the post-breakup depression.
Saying that “it’s complicated” only gives off the impression that you’re still interested in someone who might have forgotten about you.
5. Don’t call your exes
Whether it’s from a desire to “get back at them” or just because you crave intimacy and closeness with someone, getting back in touch with your exes is not the answer to your problems. They’re your exes for a reason (and after the depression-fueled passion is over, you’ll remember exactly why they’re your exes). It’s not fair to them, and it’s not fair to you, because you’re doing it for all the wrong reasons.
Instead, download a new dating app, or go meet someone new. Looking to the future will always be more productive than looking at the past.
6. Don’t listen to sad music
Music is a means of escape of many people. But, are you spending your time looking for “sad breakup songs” on Spotify, or listening to “We Were in Love” or “All By Myself” on repeat? That’s not going to help. Those songs were written to make you feel sad. If you already feel sad, it’s only going to make your sadness worse.
Instead, listen to some proper party hits. Blast up “No Diggity” or “1999” or even the “Time Warp” and dance your life away. Listen to something that’s not about love or heartbreak and you’ll be surprised at the positive change in your mood.
7. Don’t seek revenge
That’s probably the hardest one to achieve. When you break up with someone, you often harbor feelings of anger. Perhaps you were deeply hurt, and you want to hurt them as bad as they’ve hurt you. Maybe you want to project your pain, or perhaps you simply want to be understood. But being vengeful will only make you appear sour and petty. In other words, avoid saying bad things about them to your mutual friends or trash talking them on social media.
Instead, look at it from a more philosophical point of view. Understand that there’s a reason why this person is not in your life anymore – and make your peace with it. Once you stop wanting to punch them in the face every time you see them, you know you’re over it.
A little bit of depression is going to be inevitable when you do break up with someone. However, it’s important to not let it affect the rest of your life. You are not your past relationships. As hard as it seems, there is life beyond all of this. Keep up your positive thinking and look hard enough to find new life beyond this difficult moment!