Today, we’re going to hear from a woman named MJ who’s having a really difficult time. She’s having a really difficult time because she just cannot stop thinking about her ex, about the breakup, everything that’s relating to it.
It just seems her mind is struggling with thinking about anything else. She can’t concentrate.
So I wanted to record this episode to not only explain to her what to do, but explain to you what to do, because this is one of the most common effects of a breakup, where you’re constantly obsessing about your ex and you can’t think about anything else or get anything else productive done in your life.
I wanted to talk a little bit about why we do that, why we obsess about our exes, some of these symptoms of obsessing about an ex, and most importantly, the three most important factors to help you calm your emotions after a breakup.
This is kind of a universal topic that we’re going to be covering today.
But first, if you’re kind of struggling about what you should be doing with your ex, I highly recommend that you stop by my website, and take the Ex Recovery Chances quiz.
The biggest question that I get from almost every single person listening to this podcast or reading any of the articles on my website or even watching videos on my YouTube channel is,
“Chris, do I even have a chance of winning my ex back? And if so, what do I do?”
Well, I put together a special quiz on my website, that is designed to answer this exact question. It’s divided up into three parts that asks you questions about you, your breakup and general situations that you find yourself in, and also your ex and what’s going on with him.
And then based on your answers and everything that we’ve learned so far about breakups, we give you kind of an approximate idea of what your chances are so that you know if you should be even wasting time trying to get an ex back.
So with that out of the way, let’s hear MJ’s question.
“Hi, Chris. This is MJ. It’s been two weeks since my boyfriend of one year and I broke up, but we’re going to see each other next week so he can return my laptop to me.
I was the one who initiated contact because I really do need my laptop back and couldn’t wait, so I chatted with him for the first time since the break up to talk about when to meet up, and he was very casual about it.
I mean, I was being casual too, because I wanted to have a positive non-stressful conversation with him, and I know he can’t read emotions in a chat box, but I just felt that he isn’t taking it as hard as I was, that he didn’t even miss me at all in those two weeks.
At one point in the conversation, I even asked him if it’s okay if his best friend be the one to give me the laptop instead. And then he said, “You don’t want to see me?” And I answered, “No, you just might be busy. Ha ha.” And that’s the thing. He sounds busy. I mean, I’m busy too, but why is it that it seems to be easier for him than for me.
I think about him 24/7 and he sounds like he hasn’t thought of me at all. I don’t know. I would really appreciate your help.”
You know, it takes a lot of courage to open yourself up and be vulnerable when you’re asking these questions, and you can definitely tell MJ is struggling with this breakup.
It’s been two weeks since her breakup, and she just cannot stop thinking about him.
But I think what irks her the most is that she feels that she’s constantly obsessing about her ex and what he’s doing, and probably nitpicking every single little action that he’s basically engaging in, and it seems like he’s not doing the same thing to her at all.
She’s struggling with the fact that maybe he’s not thinking about her at all.
Well, I’m here to tell you, MJ, that your ex is thinking about you, and I think what you’re doing is a little bit putting your own internal assumptions about how you’re approaching the breakup onto an ex.
Everyone has a different, unique way of approaching a breakup and I think it’s really common for exes to act like your ex is acting, like everything’s cool, nothing’s bothering them, but you don’t know what is happening during the private moments when you’re not around, and that’s usually the part with the most impact of the whole process.
So I wouldn’t worry so much about what he’s doing. I’d worry more about what you’re doing, and specifically I wanted to tackle this issue of,
“Is it normal to not stop thinking about your ex?”
And to answer the question, really to the point, yes, it is completely normal to go through a wide variety of emotions after a breakup.
I often relate to this or make an analogy of the fact that this is a little like having a pendulum swing from one end of the spectrum to another end of the spectrum.
It’s completely common for you to see exes be really into you one minute and then cold the next. It’s really common for you to be into an ex one minute and then really angry at them the next.
You will notice it’s kind of like you go from one wide range of emotions to another wide range of emotions at the drop of a hat.
It’s like the pendulum is swinging back and forth and back and forth.
But many of our clients, or many of the clients that I’ve worked with experience kind of similar symptoms, and these are kind of the symptoms that are common and present throughout a breakup.
So what are some of those symptoms?
- No Motivation
- Mood Swings
- Lack Libido
- Immune system weakens
- Inability to Concentrate
Well, you may find yourself have a lack of motivation. Nothing really motivates you. Work doesn’t motivate you, because you can’t stop thinking about your ex.
And I’ve been through breakups where you go through the breakup and you’re just so frustrated or so kind of messed up emotionally that you can’t think about anything else other than what your ex is doing and when they’re going to contact you.
Every time you try to motivate yourself or engage in some sort of sport, for example, you don’t even care about it. You just lack the motivation to continue.
Another really common side effect of thinking about an ex too much or experiencing a breakup is having overwhelming fatigue and obviously the mood swings.
So anyone who says that a breakup is only internal and doesn’t take on any physical characteristics, I would submit that they’ve never been through a real difficult breakup.
It’s really common to get fatigued and even to lose your appetite, but probably the biggest thing that I’ve noticed happen is people who get sick after a breakup.
So what happens when you go through a breakup and it’s affecting you really, really internally and you’re taking everything in, you’re really stressed about the whole thing, you’ll notice that your immune system weakens, and it leaves you susceptible to colds and things like that, which obviously brings you further down into the depths of despair.
You lack your libido sometimes. You have an inability to concentrate.
I feel like a broken record here, but I think I’m kind of getting the point home to you guys.
If you’re feeling any of these things, it is completely normal. It’s completely normal to not think about anything else other than what your ex is doing. But luckily, over the years, we’ve found that there are three really important factors that you can engage in or do to help calm your emotions after a breakup.
So anyone listening to this, if you’re going through a breakup, there are three things that I would recommend that you do that can help calm your emotions.
I cannot guarantee that you will stop thinking about your ex. I actually think it’s impossible to have anyone say like,
“Yes, you will stop thinking about your ex if you do this, this, and this. If you meet someone else, you’ll stop thinking about your ex.”
I don’t think that’s true. I don’t think anything that you can do will make you stop thinking about your ex, but I think what you need to understand is some of the science behind what’s going on.
When you go through a breakup, all sorts of emotions and chemicals get released into your body, and it’s kind of like your body has a natural regulation of how it regulates all of these chemicals, but when you go through a breakup, the regulations get thrown out the window and the chemicals take control of the party, so to speak.
So it’s simply a factor, if you want to get back to more of a playing regulated level, you need to do some things to help with that.
And there are three factors that I want you to consider
Factor number one is diet
When you eat like crap, you’re going to feel like crap. You see, your body cannot properly balance the chemicals that I’m talking about that are going crazy if you feed it crap food or if you don’t feed it at all.
Remember I said loss of appetite is a really common breakup behavior that we see, or breakup symptom. So make sure that you’re feeding it properly so that you can balance how you are feeling, and I think there’s another way that this can go.
Sometimes people, when they go through breakups, they have no problem eating, but they’re just eating the wrong types of food, which in turn make them feel worse. So make sure that you’re taking care of your body with the right type of diet.
Now, when I say diet, I’m not saying that you need to lose weight.
This has nothing to do with that.
What I’m saying is that you need to be eating healthy kinds of foods, or the very least eating normal foods, that you can help stack the odds in your favor to help your body regulate all of the crazy chemicals going on inside of your body.
Factor number two is exercise
Now, Newton’s first law of motion states that an object at rest stays at rest, and an object in motion will stay in motion.
Out of the two outcomes here, the worst thing you can do is stay at rest, and this is the biggest issue I see with most of the people when they start working with me. When you go through a breakup, there’s a tendency to kind of fight or flight, if you look at it in those kind of terms.
Some people want to avoid the breakups so they do everything they can not to think about it, or do anything productive. Some people want to fight, so they lash out at the thing that’s causing them the most anger, which of course is their ex.
They’re the catalyst for why they’re feeling this crazy way.
What you need to understand is inaction is your enemy when it comes to breakups. You always want to be in motion.
Motion is better than no motion, and exercise is a great way to start that motion. Now, when I also say and cite Newton’s first law and the fact that an object at rest stays at rest and an object in motion stays in motion, and the fact that I believe as long as you are acting and doing something positive, you’re going to end up in a better place.
What you need to understand here is that if you sit around and rest and just wait for your ex to come to you, you feel like you’re not doing anything productive, which can allow you to have some time to sit and think, and oftentimes you really get down on yourself.
That’s why I say inaction is your enemy
If you’re not doing anything, if you’re just waiting around, you’re going to end up talking yourself out of things, and the chemicals, that internal conversation in your head, will release the negative chemicals that will just continue this negative spiral that you’re on. So I want you to not just look at it as,
“Oh, I need to exercise.” Look at it as, “I’m always going to be doing something productive at every single moment.”
That’s factor number two. It goes beyond exercise.
Basically, I want you to do something productive at all times so that you feel like you’re kind of moving towards a goal as opposed to just waiting and hoping the goal comes to you.
Factor number three is environment
Now, we find that your mind tends to reflect your surroundings. If you allow clutter and junk to pile up around you, you’ll likely have trouble organizing your thoughts.
The same goes for your outward appearance.
If you clean up your appearance and your environment, then you could effectively trick your brain into being more optimistic and processing things more clearly.
Environment can have an impact on your life
It’s amazing what environment can have and the impact it can have on all facets of your life. Now, we’re talking about things like, okay, when you were really depressed, you just kind of don’t care about cleaning things up, and you know that godliness is next to cleanliness type idea comes into play here, but I think it’s a little bit more than that.
If you think about the correlation that environment has to love, I would argue that environment can have a gigantic impact on how you can fall in love with someone.
Think of it like this.
You’re not going to fall in love with someone at the drive through of McDonald’s. You’re more likely to fall in love with someone at the most romantic date you can possibly think of. That has to play a factor, so don’t really throw environment out like it’s not this big thing that you can focus on.
I would actually argue it’s one of the most important things that you can focus on. If you make sure that your surroundings are really, really stacked, and the fact that you have a good handle on everything, you’re probably going to feel a little bit better about yourself.
See, I think that’s one of the greatest features of life.
If you really think about it, entropy, the second law of thermodynamics, is always inaction. The universe tends towards a state of disorder. In fact, many of the best scientists believe that life was created out of the fact that the universe is in disorder.
The fact that the universe has created, and the world was created out of the fact that everything is tending towards entropy, and that only in this span of time can life exist.
My point here is, without getting too philosophical or sciencey, is the fact that entropy is a real thing.
Your surroundings, your life will always tend towards disorder. The greatest fact or the greatest ability of human beings is to create order from the chaos. You’ve gone through a breakup. You have entered into a phase of your life where chaos is reigning.
There are two ways that you can handle it
You can give in to the chaos and allow it to reflect your surroundings;
- your mind,
- your environment,
- your appearance,
or you can attempt to create order from the chaos by;
- taking control of your appearance,
- making sure that you look better than ever before,
- by taking control of your environment,
- making sure that you’re not letting clutter pile up,
- by finding ways to organize your thoughts in a better way
That’s what this is all about. Creating order from chaos.