Today I have a special treat for you. Last week I had the pleasure of interviewing Sarah who is one of our success stories. Again, if you haven’t been paying attention I’ve been doing this series where I’ve been interviewing people who have come through our program and have gotten their exes back.

Probably the best part about this is that I’m checking my ego at the door and just looking at what works. This means I don’t even care if they used the strategies we teach in our program.

This is strictly about results.

Well, today’s interview is a gold mine.

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The Success Story Transcript

Chris:
Okay. Today, we’re going to be talking to Sarah, who is one of our lovely success stories who’s come through the program and happened to get her ex back. We’re just going to be asking her questions about what she did that worked. How are you doing, Sarah?

Sarah:
Oh, I’m good. I’m good. How are you?

Chris:
Hanging in there. Hanging in there. You got your ex back and one thing, I don’t know if you know, we’ve been doing this thing lately where we’re trying to record a success story a week where we’re posting it on our YouTube channel. We’re just trying to figure out what are people who are successful doing, versus the people who aren’t successful. Obviously, you and your ex-boyfriend had a breakup.

Sarah:
Mm-hmm (affirmative). Yeah.

Chris:
Somehow, you came into our atmosphere and bought our program. I don’t know if you did any coaching with me, or rather with coach Anna. But, I just want to get your take on like, okay, you go through this breakup. What is your first response to this breakup? Do you go immediately to Google and… reading all the articles you can read on getting your ex back? What was that like for you?

Sarah:
Yeah, that’s what I did, basically. But, I was so anxious at that time. I don’t know what to do. I cried like usual. I cried-

Chris:
You went through the grieving process.

Sarah:
Yeah. Right. Yeah, process.

Chris:
How long did that last for you?

Sarah:
Months.

Chris:
Months? Okay. So, hold on. Give us the dates. When does this breakup kind of occur around?

Sarah:
It occurred end of September last year.

Chris:
Okay. How long does this grieving process last before you hit Ex Boyfriend Recovery?

Sarah:
Actually, I discovered the program around the same time. Early October, like that.

Chris:
Okay.

Sarah:
But, the process of grieving still going on during that time.

Chris:
I see.

Sarah:
I was trying to figure out why did that happen. I blame myself for the breakup and whatnot. Yeah. And then I discovered your program and I said like, “Okay. Why not give it a try?” Because at that time, I still want to be with him.

Chris:
You get in the program, obviously you get into the Facebook group and I noticed you interacting with other people in the Facebook group. Did you get partnered up with one of the Battle Buddies to help you through that grieving process?

Sarah:
Yes. Yes, I did. They paired me up with someone who is near to my region. My Battle Buddy does really help. Then, I read through all of other stories in the Facebook group too. So, I found couple of people who are actually very positive, very following the program at that time, so I tried to add them and I tried to vent at them, I would say. Like vent. But they’re kind of like, “Oh, yeah. I understand how you’re feeling. But we can go through this together.” Things like that. Everything is just positive.

Chris:
Okay. You get into the Facebook group, you start interacting with the people there. Did you do a traditional No Contact Rule at all?

Sarah:
Yeah.

Chris:
Do you remember how long your No Contact Rule was? Because it’s been a while since obviously you started that.

Sarah:
I think I started right away in October. And then suddenly there’s a typhoon came [crosstalk 00:04:15]-

Chris:
Okay, so like a hurricane, typhoon thing.

Sarah:
Yeah. So like I-

Chris:
So you like were worried about your ex in that.

Sarah:
Yeah. Suddenly my ex contacted me and the he asked me, “How are you? I hope you’re okay. This is the center of… If anything happened, you can go here.”

Chris:
Oh, wow.

Sarah:
That kind of thing.

Chris:
It took mother nature to get involved for him to reach out to you. You just need a hurricane, guys. Do you remember how long in No Contact that was? You were ignoring him and then this typhoon comes to head? Were you halfway through it? Were you almost done with it? Had you just started it?

Sarah:
I think it was a few weeks after. I think around two or three weeks, if I’m not mistaken. No, it’s like two weeks I guess. Then I have a eager to actually reply back. I shouldn’t. I know I shouldn’t.

Chris:
So you broke the rules and replied. So you replied back to him because basically he’s saying, “Hey, this is where you go with the typhoon stuff if you’re caught in the typhoon.” What did you say, do you remember?

Sarah:
I just said, “Yeah. Thanks for your concern.” I said. I replied, “Thanks for your concern. I’m okay here. I’m okay alone.” I just said like that. Something like that. I can’t remember.

Chris:
So you literally say, “Yeah, I’m okay alone, without you.”

Sarah:
Yeah. Sort of, but not really. And then I went to the group and I told them the story. Then they said, “No. You have to restart over.” So, I have a [crosstalk 00:06:12]-

Chris:
You restarted, yeah. And did you follow their advice?

Sarah:
Yeah. I did. I went NC right away.

Chris:
Okay. So you went to the No Contact Rule. You started over. Did you make it through fully the second go around?

Sarah:
Yeah.

Chris:
Okay. How long was that? Like 30 days, 21 days? 45 days?

Sarah:
I was planning to do it like 30 days, but then I feel good about it. I focus on myself. I did a lot of reading. I went out with friends. It’s like I haven’t done it for a while, since the breakup. I dressed up. I posted pictures and then I did all the things that I like. But reading does help me a lot at that time.

Chris:
What kind of things were you reading? Are you reading like self-help, like improve yourself type things? Or was it more of just fictional things to distract yourself from the breakup?

Sarah:
Well, it’s more on the files that the Facebook group provided.

Chris:
Okay. So it’s more of the self-help type things like, “Hey, this is what you should be doing with your time.”

Sarah:
Yeah.

Chris:
Did you feel like going through that period of No Contact, where you’re focusing on yourself, really made a difference?

Sarah:
Yeah. Yeah. I feel like, no, the breakup… I realized that the breakup was not my fault. And I realized that actually both of us can work on things out, if he gave more time to me to explain. Because the breakup happened just like ooh, hah, like that. Like suddenly-

Chris:
It was out of the blue.

Sarah:
Yeah. Out of the blue.

Chris:
It was just shocking to you.

Sarah:
Yeah. And he said that, “Okay, that’s it. We’re no longer boyfriend girlfriend. That’s it.”

Chris:
Okay. Would it be fair to say that because you redid this No Contact after the typhoon thing, you started over again, you decide you’re going to do a 30 day No Contact, and you start focusing on you, you think that’s fair to say that gave you more of an outlook on like, “Hey, he needs to respect me more, if we’re going to get back together?”

Sarah:
Yeah.

Chris:
Okay.

Sarah:
I needed him to hear my opinion too. Not just his opinion.

Chris:
Do you feel like your relationship before the breakup was a lot like where you’re sort of letting him have his way?

Sarah:
Yeah. I can say that.

Chris:
Okay.

Sarah:
Then, from 30, then I had a session with Anna.

Chris:
Anna.

Sarah:
And then from 30 days, I extended it to 40-

Chris:
45.

Sarah:
45.

Chris:
45 days.

Sarah:
But it did not… Yeah, 45 days, around that. Then after that I started the first texting.

Chris:
And how did that go when you… Did you reach out to him first? Let me ask you this question. When you do your 30 days, and you extend it to 45 days, did he reach out to you at all through text during that time?

Sarah:
No.

Chris:
No. So it was you having to finish your No Contact Rule, and reach out to him first. And how did that interaction go?

Sarah:
Eventually, it was positive. He just answered my question.

Chris:
Okay, so he just answered the question.

Sarah:
Yeah. And then I tried to end it, the text messages, on high notes. I think the first one went between neutral and positive.

Chris:
Okay. Neutral, okay, so not quite positive but a little better than neutral, okay. It’s in that in between.

Sarah:
[crosstalk 00:10:29].

Chris:
Okay.

Sarah:
Yeah. [inaudible 00:10:33].

Chris:
That was the first interaction you guys had. Obviously you guys are going to have a second conversation at some point over text. How quickly does that happen for you?

Sarah:
Okay. To be honest, I thought No Contact was the hardest for me, like this process I thought. But then I came to-

Chris:
The texting.

Sarah:
… texting, that was the hardest for me.

Chris:
I’m genuinely curious, why do you feel that way?

Sarah:
Because you can’t simply text whatever you want. As you mentioned, you have to go around his interest. I sort of took me days to actually write a strategy. I would say, “Okay, list down his interest,” things like that. It kind of like-

Chris:
Oh, it messed with you. Because you’re like, “Oh, I want to talk about things that I want to talk about, but I know I can’t. I have to talk about things he wants to talk about. And I don’t know the things he likes.”

Sarah:
Yeah.

Chris:
It worked out, because obviously you did engage him on his interests. Or I’m assuming so, right?

Sarah:
Yeah. Yeah. It worked. It did work.

Chris:
Okay. You did engage him on his interests. I’m curious, when you engaged him on his interests, did you feel like he was a lot more engaged in the conversations? Or was it just pretty much in that between neutral and positive approach?

Sarah:
It depends on the topic, I would say.

Chris:
Okay.

Sarah:
Because the first few ones, the first one went okay because it relates to his interest. And then the second one I think it did not went well. He was ghosted on me.

Chris:
Oh, so he didn’t even respond.

Sarah:
Yeah. I mean, he responded.

Chris:
Oh, he just didn’t engage then.

Sarah:
Yeah. Like one or two words, like that. Like the beginning [crosstalk 00:13:00]-

Chris:
Oh, I see.

Sarah:
I wanted to end it. But he ended it first.

Chris:
Okay. But he did respond, albeit it only like a few words, which isn’t perfect. When did things start to kick up momentum-wise?

Sarah:
I can’t remember. I think like after the fifth or sixth text I think, because in between… Okay, with my ex at the time I realized that I read his pattern. I make sure like okay, when is the suitable time for him to actually reply me? Because eventually I realized that if I text him during the day, it took him more than three to four hours to reply, like that.

Chris:
Wow. You noticed if you text him during the day, it’s taking him hours to reply. I’m assuming at night he responds a lot quicker.

Sarah:
Yeah. That’s what I realized. That’s why.

Chris:
Did you find out that it’s because he’s got work throughout the day?

Sarah:
Yeah. Yeah. He’s busy. I kind of understand, because he’s like, “If I work, I need to focus on my work. Don’t bother me,” kind of thing. And then I talked to my, one of the members in Facebook. Then I ask her like, “Okay. What do I need to do? When do you think I should text him? He always respond me about three to four hours. It means I have to mirror him in a way, right? If I wait that long, I already go to sleep. I usually wake up, needs to wake up early. I always leave the conversation hanging. And I don’t want that. I want to leave on a high note. I need to find a strategy.”

Sarah:
That’s when I realized, when I talk about it to my Battle Buddy and she suggested that, “Okay, so why not do it during the night? Texting during the night after he finishes his work. You can just assume what time. And then that’s it. Leave him on high note. That’s all.”

Chris:
It’s almost like you engage him in a conversation at night. And he feels like, “Oh wow, this is fun.” And then he’s thinking about it all day long, hoping that you’re going to text him throughout the day, only… Do I have this right, you’re only texting him at night at this point?

Sarah:
Yeah. At that point.

Chris:
And you’re saying, that’s what really made things go quicker and better.

Sarah:
I would say, yeah. I would say, because there are also days that he’s not engaged at all. Like I say, it depending on the topic. If he really into the topic, he would reply me a lot. And then I always leave him, like after the text I always leave about five or four days, like that. And then as we get used to the texting pattern, I tried to close the gap.

Chris:
Okay. Just so I have this right. You’re saying at first, when you first started texting him, you’d make there, there would be a long period of time before you would have another conversation. But the more you did this, the smaller the gap would become, to the point where you guys are texting every day at some point?

Sarah:
Mm-hmm (affirmative). And then at that point, instead of me starting the [crosstalk 00:17:16]-

Chris:
Ah, he was starting the conversations.

Sarah:
Yeah. Yeah.

Chris:
Beautiful. That’s awesome. Do you feel like, how long… because I think this is a huge question that a lot of the people who listen to this podcast have. And that’s like, “I’m the one, like Chris, you’re telling me that I have to text my ex first. What does it take to make him text me first?”

Chris:
And my theory has always been, well if you do what you did, if you do what Sarah does, where you are starting the conversation and then ending it first, eventually he’ll start to crave the conversation and reach out first. And you’re saying that’s exactly what happened to you.

Sarah:
Yeah.

Chris:
Awesome. What did it take? How long were you guys texting back and forth before you guys eventually saw each other in person?

Sarah:
It took a while.

Chris:
It took a while.

Sarah:
[crosstalk 00:18:07]. It took a while. Okay, let’s see. Roughly October, November. It started between middle of November, we started the texting phase.

Chris:
Okay. The texting phase starts in the middle of November. That’s like two and a half months.

Sarah:
And then I think it gets more interesting until January.

Chris:
You guys were texting for three, three and a half months.

Sarah:
I suppose so, yes.

Chris:
And eventually you guys are… Who pushes for meeting up in person? Do you guys get on the phone next? Or do you go right to that in-person stage?

Sarah:
Oops. Sorry. That was my alarm.

Chris:
Is that your boyfriend right there calling?

Sarah:
No. No, that’s my alarm.

Chris:
He’s calling on air, guys.

Sarah:
No. Wait.

Sarah:
I was the one who tried to-

Chris:
See him in person?

Sarah:
No. Before that I had a video call.

Chris:
Okay, so face-time, video chat, Skype, things of that nature?

Sarah:
Yeah. Because in the conversation, I asked for his help with my tax return.

Chris:
Oh, beautiful. Nothing makes someone pay more attention than the… The fact that he wanted to help you with the tax return is just, that’s a good sign, because no one wants to do tax returns.

Sarah:
Yeah. No.

Chris:
I think it’s a good sign obviously. That’s how you hooked him into doing the face-time thing.

Sarah:
Yeah, because I said, “Oh, I need to do the video call, because I really need you-

Chris:
Like you need to this

Sarah:
… You need to see it.”

Chris:
Oh, that’s so genius. That’s so smart, Sarah.

Sarah:
But in between, during the conversation, because I posted a lot of things. He rarely on his social media, like Facebook or Instagram. So we use the LINE chat application a lot. I posted most of my pictures there instead of Facebook and Instagram. And he thought that I already have someone.

Chris:
Oh, he thought you were dating already.

Sarah:
Yeah.

Chris:
He thought you’d moved on from him.

Sarah:
Mm-hmm (affirmative). Before the video call, he kept asking me, “Are you with someone?”

Chris:
Oh, he’s already worried that you’d moved on from him.

Sarah:
I don’t know, maybe. But he didn’t show that he was-

Chris:
He tried to play it off cool, then.

Sarah:
Yeah.

Chris:
He tried to ask it without coming out abruptly and just being really upfront about it. He was fishing around, I guess is a good way of putting it.

Sarah:
Yeah.

Chris:
That’s another interesting thing that you learned on the face-time chat. After you breach this face-time thing with the tax returns, does that become the new norm where you guys are talking on face-time all the time? Or is it, you go right back to texting?

Sarah:
No, it’s like in between.

Chris:
Okay, so you guys are just doing whatever feels relevant to the conversation.

Sarah:
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Chris:
Sometimes you text, sometimes you do the face-time thing. And eventually one of you guys is going to start pushing for an in-person meeting. Who did it? Was it you that pushed for it? Or was it him that pushed for it?

Sarah:
It was me.

Chris:
Oh, okay. No, that’s beautiful. How did you do it? How did you get him to agree?

Sarah:
After the video call. I tried before the meetup, I already plan on, okay, I should do, when should the meetup be? I put timeline to it. I need to make sure that I have another phone call with him. From the video call about tax, I ended it. And then I tried to continue it again, because it took a lot of process to actually fill in the form. I ended it. I said, “Okay, let’s continue next time.” And then the second time, it was about the tax form a bit, but then I go with his, talking about his interest at that time. He was into anime.

Chris:
You mixed business with pleasure, so to speak.

Sarah:
Yeah. [crosstalk 00:23:20].

Chris:
You weren’t able to finish the tax form the first time. You used that and say, “Hey, let’s do this again next week,” to get him on the phone again. But instead of doing the tax form the entire time, you also start to just have a normal organic conversation with him.

Sarah:
Yeah.

Chris:
And obviously that goes well?

Sarah:
Yeah, eventually. And then I keep on doing like texting. And then I used, the reason for meetup is for him to help me out too, because I engage with him using what we have talk in the conversation. And then I use the same topic for meetup. For example-

Chris:
I love. It’s so clever. It’s smart, because the tax forms, anyone who’s ever had to do tax forms alone, I’ve had to do it and I’ve had help, it takes a long time to get through those tax forms. You’re saying you still use the tax form to see him in person like, “Hey, could I just see you in person so you could help me with this?”

Chris:
And plus, it’s like a damsel in distress type thing. He wants to help you. He wants to feel like the hero.

Sarah:
Yeah. Eventually. Then I set up the meetup. I set up the meetup and then we met in a cafĂ©. He say, “Oh, it’s been a while,” things like that. And then after that I realized, “Okay, I need help with something.” But then eventually, stupid I am, I did not, my laptop was running out of battery so we couldn’t do anything. I was like, “Oh, my God. I messed up,” like that. The first meetup.

Chris:
No. Did it work out in your favor though? Because, it almost forced you to talk about just normal couple things.

Sarah:
Yeah. And then I decided, okay it ended up this way. So I might just have a casual conversation with him, sort of. And then instead of him helping me out at that time, we just had to talk. Like what’s been going on in his life and yada, yada, yada. And I talk about what I’ve been doing yada, yada.

Sarah:
And then it only last about one hour and a half, like that. So I said like, “Oh, I need to leave. I need to meet my friend after this,” I said. Then along the way he always, whenever when we were a couple, he always see me straight to the station. He eld never leave me alone.

Chris:
Okay.

Sarah:
That’s what he did.

Chris:
He walked you to the train station.

Sarah:
Yeah.

Chris:
To protect you, so to speak.

Sarah:
Yeah. Along the way, while we’re crossing the traffic light, he was trying to hug me in a way, like that. But I did not resist. He was trying to hold my shoulder. But I did not resist-

Chris:
Oh, so he’s got like the arm around your shoulder. And you just let him do it.

Sarah:
Yeah. But then I said, and then after he see me at the station, I just say, “Okay, that’s it. Okay we’ll talk again,” like that.

Chris:
Just like that?

Sarah:
Just like that. And then after that I posted everything on Facebook. And then I got a reaction from the mods and then other people too reacted to the situation and whatnot. And then they said like, “Oh, I think it went pretty okay.”

Chris:
No, that went amazing. It’s really smart actually, because your tax form thing puts him in this hero complex position the entire way, through all the phone calls he has to help you with the taxes. Your laptop running out was a blessing in disguise, the battery. I actually think that’s kind of a brilliant thing, because you came in there, and it forces you to just have a normal conversation. And he starts to… Obviously you haven’t gotten him back just yet.

Sarah:
No.

Chris:
What does it take to push the ball over the goal line here? To where he’s asking you to be his girlfriend again?

Sarah:
Okay. Then we went to a second meetup, which I think it was him who initiated.

Chris:
That’s always a good sign. So, he initiates the second meetup.

Sarah:
Yeah. And then I say like, “Oh, I need your help with something.” Again I use the… But this one is a different one, because I wanted to go somewhere which he can help me out with school-

Chris:
School stuff.

Sarah:
… school stuff, because I work in school as a teacher. And then at the same time, I want to go to a place where it’s a bit of romantic kind of place.

Chris:
You wanted a little bit more of a private area where you guys can just connect.

Sarah:
Yeah. Sorry, yeah.

Sarah:
Then he picked the place. He said, okay because at that time it was cherry blossom.

Chris:
Oh, very nice. That’s about as romantic as it gets, Sarah.

Sarah:
Yeah. I said to him, “Oh yeah. Why not? Let’s meet up. You can help me out.”

Chris:
Oh yeah, why not?

Sarah:
Yeah, why not?

Chris:
Let’s go to the blossom trees. Okay.

Sarah:
And then I said, “Okay, you need to help me out with to find baseball stuff for the school,” because he’s into baseball.

Chris:
Okay. That’s pretty good.

Sarah:
Yeah. I said like, “I need help with the baseball team stuff.”

Chris:
Okay. You work at the school. You’re picking his brain for baseball stuff. “Help me pick out baseball stuff.”

Sarah:
Yeah.

Chris:
Wow, you are so smart. I don’t think you… Before we started recording you were just playing it down. You’re like, “Oh I didn’t really do anything that special.” All this stuff is really smart. I just don’t think you’re even giving yourself enough credit.

Sarah:
No. Thanks to my Battle Buddies anyway. We drafted a lot of text, we brainstormed a lot.

Chris:
You had that support system of all the girls and everything like that.

Sarah:
Yeah.

Chris:
And so, the baseball stuff. He’s helping you pick up baseball stuff. And I’m assuming something romantic’s going to happen here.

Sarah:
Yeah.

Chris:
Okay. Let’s get to the goods, Sarah. Let’s get to the goods.

Sarah:
Then before we went to the baseball shop he said, “Okay, let’s go and watch the cherry blossom.” He knows that I’m into photography. I brought my camera-

Chris:
Oh, okay. You brought the camera.

Sarah:
Yeah, I brought my camera along. And then I took some of the pictures. And then I say, “Okay now pose for me.” And I took his pictures. We were walking like normal. And then suddenly he brought me this one place where he said, “Oh, this is my favorite place to view the cherry blossoms.” He said that to me. We were walking and I was struggling with my camera at that time. I was trying to put it back in the case, because I already finished with taking the pictures. Then, as we walk along, he grabbed my hand.

Chris:
Ooh, grabbed the hand, okay. What happens next?

Sarah:
It was just in the mood, where-

Chris:
Okay, you’ve got the cherry blossoms, the wind’s swaying. He grabs your hand.

Sarah:
And it was next to a lake, a small lake.

Chris:
Oh, you’re just setting the scene even better now. Was there like a fence across the lake that you can walk up to the lake?

Sarah:
Yeah. I mean, no. It’s just a walk around the lake.

Chris:
Okay. It’s a sidewalk around the lake. And he grabs your hand. Does he try to kiss you?

Sarah:
No.

Chris:
No. That’s so anticlimactic. You built it up so well.

Sarah:
No. Eventually we just hold hands until the end. Then he brought me to the baseball shop. While holding hands, he didn’t say anything. He didn’t say, “Let’s go back together,” or something. Nothing.

Chris:
Nothing like that.

Sarah:
Nothing.

Chris:
It was just like he just grabbed your hand. He’s like, “You’re mine.”

Sarah:
Yeah. So I just had to-

Chris:
Did you guys at least have a conversation about how you’re going to get back together? Or was it just assumed from that point on?

Sarah:
Nothing. Nothing.

Chris:
Nothing. You guys have been back together without really having that conversation. You’re just boyfriend and girlfriend now.

Sarah:
Yeah. Eventually.

Chris:
Interesting.

Sarah:
Yeah, but then we didn’t talk about it. Then after that, we went to the baseball shop. He helped me out with the baseball thing and whatnot. Then after that I ended the meetup.

Chris:
Wow. And so was he chomping at the bit for another meetup?

Sarah:
Yeah. But because of his work-

Chris:
It took a little while before that happened?

Sarah:
Yeah. Actually it took me about 10 months, like that, in the process, like-

Chris:
Oh from start to finish it took 10 months to get him back.

Sarah:
About that.

Chris:
Wow, you are one committed lady. Holy crap. 10 months.

Sarah:
Wait. October, November, December, January, February, March, April, May, my birthday then. Yeah, around that. Like nine months.

Chris:
So nine, ten months.

Sarah:
Nine months, yeah.

Chris:
Wow. So you got him back.

Sarah:
Yeah. The third meetup was actually the one that I actually… Because he did not say anything-

Chris:
He didn’t say anything. You’re acting like a boyfriend and girlfriend, but you don’t have the label yet.

Sarah:
Yeah. No, like we’ve been contacting every day, we’ve been texting every day, we’ve been calling. And then, but still nothing from him. I just assumed that we are already a boyfriend and girlfriend, but I want the confirmation [crosstalk 00:35:22]-

Chris:
Yes, you need the confirmation.

Sarah:
Yeah. I don’t want to leave things hanging. Then the third meetup, that’s when I asked.

Chris:
How did you ask him? Did you take him to a romantic environment in front of the cherry blossoms and bat your eyes and be like, “Hey, what are we?” Did you do that? Or was it just like a blunt like, “Hey, what is this?”

Sarah:
Well I, sort of like it took advice from Anna, because I’m just afraid that I’m going to ruin it. Because I’m almost there.

Chris:
Yeah, you’re basically there. You’ve got everything except the label.

Sarah:
Yeah. I don’t want to ruin it, I set another, what do you call it, meeting with Anna.

Chris:
You did coaching with coach Anna, who’s been advising you periodically throughout. And you’re just like, “Look Anna, what will help me get over the hump here? How can I get him to… ” What did you guys settle on?

Sarah:
Yeah. Anna is very good in giving me strategies. But not just strategies, she also advised me on a lot of things in terms of psychology and things like that. Then she sort of draft the conversation, how it should ended up. But wait, let me… I kind of followed that.

Chris:
You followed her advice on the real-life conversation you have with him.

Sarah:
Yeah. Anna said if you want to, how do you say, have him engage in the conversation, I couldn’t, like I shouldn’t do it like one-on-one session, because he will feel that I’m interrogating him. Instead of that, I need to do something like while he’s doing something. Like for example, if he’s in the kitchen, so I should have the conversation there.

Sarah:
Then okay, the third meetup was like, I want to celebrate his birthday, so I made a card. Then I gave him the card. Then we were walking in a park at the time. I give him my card. I said like-

Chris:
You gave him the card, you’re walking in the park.

Sarah:
Yeah. I said like, “Oh, happy birthday.” So then… Wait, wait, wait. Let me look for the conversation.

Chris:
She’s looking through her notes with coach Anna right now.

Sarah:
Ah, okay. Right. Before that, sorry before the meetup, something happened. He sort of left me hanging with my text. But from the… Before, I’m the type of anxious person, so I always [inaudible 00:39:34] like, “Where are you? Where [crosstalk 00:39:36]-

Chris:
Okay. So yeah, [inaudible 00:39:38].

Sarah:
Yeah. After I went to the program, I realized that it’s not something good to do.

Chris:
No. It makes you appear a little bit more insecure than you really are. You cleaned that up so you’re not doing that anymore, right?

Sarah:
Yeah.

Chris:
But it’s probably driving you insane inside. It’s like, “What’s going on?”

Sarah:
Yeah. Exactly. Then I realized that, since I joined the program, I can control myself. I kind of control my emotion. I kind of like, “It’s okay. Give him space. He needs it.” I gave him a lot of space in between the text. When he did not reply me, I just go, “It’s okay. I’ll do my things. I don’t have to worry about him, whatever. He will text me if anything happen.” Things like that. So I don’t worry much like before.

Sarah:
Then, something actually happened a few days before the meetup. He went to a bar with his client. And then one of his friends, boyfriend, hit him.

Chris:
Punched him?

Sarah:
Yeah. Punch him.

Chris:
Punched him.

Sarah:
Yeah.

Chris:
Okay. That is a twist in the story.

Sarah:
So, then he told me. And then I got worried. So I gpt worried, but he left me hanging.

Chris:
Hold on. Why did he get punched? Did you ask him like, “Why did you get punched? Why did someone hit you?”

Sarah:
Yeah. This is where Anna actually helped me. Then during the meetup, I did… Before the meetup, I just text him like normal, “Okay, are we going to meet?” Like dah, dah, dah something like that. I did not actually talk about the incident.

Chris:
Okay.

Sarah:
I just said like, “Oh, I’m worried,” something like that, “But thank God you’re fine.” Like that. When the meetup, when I meet him, I hug him and then I said like, “I’m so happy that you’re okay. I was worried for you. And upset that someone hit you.” And then I listen to him. And then he said, “I’m not cheating on you,” or something, he said like that.

Sarah:
It’s just sometimes things like that happen in a bar. And the couple, his friends, the girl and the boyfriend, join them. And then suddenly, out of nowhere, he just punched him. I think that maybe the conversation that they had [crosstalk 00:43:09]-

Chris:
Something set him off. Your ex-boyfriend had said something that set him off to cause-

Sarah:
Maybe. Maybe.

Chris:
All right. You use this as your opportune moment to be the caring girlfriend. How do you get your conversation into asking, to get the labels?

Sarah:
Okay. Then, this is where the part, after I listen to him, and then he said, “The thing is, the reason why I did not text you about it, because I don’t want to talk about it. I want to forget about what happened.” That’s what he said to me. And then I say, “Okay, I accept it.” And then I said, “I believe that you are not cheating on me, because I know that you are loyal.” I said, “But however, the surprise to me was that, that you said you’re not cheating.” So this is when I use it like, “Does that mean that we in a relationship and dating?”

Chris:
Oh, clever. So, what did he say?

Sarah:
So because I just said like, “Okay, I wanted to ask because I thought we were dating. But you have not said so. So I just wanted to make sure, that’s why I said-

Chris:
Coach Anna basically plotted out like, “Hey, this is probably what he’s going to say.” And you just followed the script.

Sarah:
Yeah.

Chris:
What did he say?

Sarah:
Okay, so-

Chris:
Did he say like, “Oh, yeah we’re in a relationship.”

Sarah:
Then we were holding hands at the time. And then he said to me, “I like you.” He said, like in Japanese culture we don’t really say, “I love you. I love you.”

Chris:
Okay. Got you.

Sarah:
It’s always like [inaudible 00:45:01] something like that. So he’s like, “Oh, I like you. But I’m not sure what we are,” he said. Like, “What do you mean that we’re dating?” And then I said that we are in a relationship. I said like I just want to confirm with him. “I just want to confirm that, because we never talk about it. We’ve been texting every day. We’ve been doing stuff like a couple,” I said. And then he said, “Yeah, we are dating.”

Chris:
Okay. That’s it. You got the confirmation.

Sarah:
Yeah.

Chris:
It worked out. Him getting hit by some dude in a bar, helped you get him back. Who knew?

Sarah:
Yeah.

Chris:
Wow. When you look back at your 10 month, or nine month experience, what do you feel like helped you the most? If you just picked one thing, what do feel like made the biggest difference for you?”

Sarah:
To build myself up, I would say this three things. Battle Buddies, a lot of reading, coaching with Anna.

Chris:
Oh, okay. So we’ve got the three there. Battle Buddies, so the support system that that provides. The reading, which is like reading the program, reading any other thing to cultivate your mind. And then having someone be there with you to help coach you through the difficult moments. And you feel those three things made the biggest difference?

Sarah:
Yeah. I would say, because in the beginning I couldn’t control my emotion. I couldn’t. I was like all-

Chris:
How long did it take you to feel like you’ve got a handle on that?

Sarah:
Being UG?

Chris:
Yeah.

Sarah:
After a couple of months. I think doing the NC… Okay, the reason why I want to extend my NC at that time, because I think I still need to control my emotion, not because of him, but because of me at that time.

Chris:
Okay. I’m going to tell you something interesting I’ve noticed. When I do these interviews, the one consistency I see among almost every single one, the one pattern is, people who use their time during No Contact to focus on themselves. And sort of look at the areas they feel weak on. For you it’s emotional control.

Sarah:
Yeah.

Chris:
I’m so happy to hear that you said you extended your No Contact Rule, because that tells me you’re really putting a lot of value into that. And I can’t tell you how much that does help when you get back in touch with your ex, because I think so many people just try to rush through the No Contact Rule without doing that hard work. And it’s not easy.

Sarah:
It’s not.

Chris:
You also, just my initial thoughts on listening to your situation, I actually think it’s kind of brilliant to use the taxes as a way to get his help, and force a natural way of talking on the phone, and a natural way of meeting up. And I also thought it was a really lucky coincidence that your laptop ran out of battery. It almost forces you to have a natural conversation. And I feel like I’m going to start recommending people to have ideas like that to draw, like it’s a hook to get on the phone.

Sarah:
[crosstalk 00:48:26].

Chris:
You’re a trendsetter, Sarah.

Sarah:
No, no. Well-

Chris:
So-

Sarah:
Yeah, sorry-

Chris:
No, no. You go ahead.

Sarah:
I think Anna did help me a lot in terms of that. Like [Kirsty 00:48:45] too, like in the group.

Chris:
Yeah, Kirsty. Some of the mods helping you. You really relied a lot on that support group, that support system in the ERP Facebook group.

Sarah:
Yeah. In the beginning, before, because I’m too afraid of what his response would be. At that time I’m still kind of anxious too, because I kept on looking at his social media.

Chris:
Yeah.

Sarah:
But, less anxious at the time. It’s just a, “Okay, whatever. Okay, you’ve been going here and there.” But that’s it. I don’t worry much. But to initiate the first text was nerve-racking for me, because I cannot imagine how would he respond to it. A lot of draft does really help. And I also make notes of every single thing that [crosstalk 00:49:46]-

Chris:
Oh, so you charted everything, to see the patterns and things like that.

Sarah:
Yeah. I also recorded his response, like in Excel, and all the things that Anna had given me. I kind of followed that. All of my planners are mostly full with the points from the program.

Chris:
That’s beautiful. That’s awesome. Looking back do you feel like, it took a long time to get him back, do you feel like that was, do you feel happy with the outcome and everything, now that you have him back?

Sarah:
Yeah.

Chris:
That’s great.

Sarah:
Yeah, because I see the relationship in a different perspective now. I became less anxious. I gave him more space. And he appreciates that. It’s like I can read his pattern now. Every week, even though we’ve been texting every day, almost every day, but there are also days that he just needs to shut things.

Chris:
Chill. Got it, yeah. He just needs those days to just take a breather, and then come back into it.

Sarah:
Yeah.

Chris:
And you’re just okay with giving him that space, because you feel so secure with yourself.

Sarah:
Yeah. I can like, “Yeah, I’m okay. I have my things to do,” things like that. The program does help me like, “Okay, now I understand what do you need.” And he really appreciates that. I think before the program, I cannot see that. I don’t know what is your need? I think we had a problem in conversation, to have an open conversation like what we need, what I don’t want you to do, things like that.

Sarah:
This program does really help me to actually get to know him better.

Chris:
Well, thank you so much for doing the interview. I’m actually just blown away by some of the stuff that you did. I feel it was so clever. I’m totally going to talk about that in a blog post or something, about using his interest to hook him, or using a favor to hook him into a phone conversation, because it worked so well for you. It’s just really kind of clever. But thank you so much for coming on and doing this.

Sarah:
Well, thank you for having me.

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