The no contact rule is among one of the most important strategies that you will need to employ if you want to have success getting your ex back.

It’s also among the most difficult strategies to complete.

According to my own internal research I estimate that about 80% of men and women who attempt the no contact rule will end up failing it.

Therefore, you’ll have a lot of individuals who attempt the no contact rule a second time around.

But will it work?

Can it still be as effective?

Well, that’s what we are here to find out.

Failing A No Contact Rule And Trying It A Second Time

Having me sit here and write an article about what to do if you fail the no contact rule is counter productive.

The answer is simple,

You try again and do your best not to mess up

The more interesting question has to do with if the no contact rule will still work the second time around.

There’s a lot of debate out there with this and I thought you’d be interested to hear an actual experts take.

So, here’s everything we are going to be talking about in this article,

  • What The No Contact Rule Is
  • What Failing It Looks Like
  • If It Is Still Effective If You Have To Do It A Second Time
  • Some Tips On How To Not Fail It The Second Time Around

Let’s begin!

What Is The No Contact Rule? 

In case you’re new I thought this would be a good section to include.

If you’re already an EBR veteran than you can probably just skip this and move on to the next section.

What is the no contact rule?

Well, quite simply it’s a period of time where you ignore your ex on purpose.

For those of us who are visual learners,

We’ve found success with three different time frames,

  1. The 21 Day Rule
  2. The 30 Day Rule
  3. The 45 Day Rule

If you want the full low down of which “time frame” you should be employing for your situation I highly recommend you pick up the no contact rule book that I wrote.

The only rule with the no contact rule is that you can’t break it.

(There are actually a few circumstances where you have to alter this but for the most part you can’t.)

So, that means that if your ex asks you something like,

You can’t respond.

If they call you and leave a voice mail.

You can’t respond.

If they threaten to “never talk to you again” if you don’t respond.

You can’t respond.

That is the no contact rule in a nutshell.

 Here’s What “Failing” The No Contact Rule Looks Like

At the beginning of this article I made a pretty bold statement.

Do you remember what that statement was?

I estimate that around 80% of individuals who attempt the no contact rule will end up failing it at least one time.

Now, what do I mean by that?

Simply put, they will break that one rule of not responding to their ex.

Here’s how it usually goes down.

You get really excited to try the no contact rule out on your ex. You come to our website, read our stuff. Heck, maybe you even buy my best selling book and read about it there.

The point is that you are sold on it.

Things seem to be going pretty well until fear starts to grip you.

What if my ex forget about me while I’m ignoring them?

This fear only becomes compounded more by the fact that contrary to what you thought would happen your ex hasn’t made an attempt to reach out to you at all.

In fact, by the time they do reach out you have worked yourself up so much that you just throw caution to the wind and decide to respond to them.

I’ve seen about a dozen variations of this exact situation over the last six and a half years and it never ceases to amaze me the internal dialogue going on in my clients head that prevents them from completing the no contact rule.

Now I know, from afar the no contact rule seems like an easy thing to complete.

You’re sitting there thinking,

Wait, all I have to do is ignore my ex for 30 days? That’s it?

But this is a naive statement to make.

Completing the no contact rule is extremely difficult because the odds aren’t in your favor. In fact, according to my research there is only a 20% chance that you’ll be perfect you’re first time around.

Now, this leads us to the inevitable question of,

What happens when you fail the no contact rule and have to attempt it a second time? Will it still work?

Let’s find out!

Can The No Contact Rule Work If You Have To Attempt It A Second Time?

I get asked this question a lot when I do Facebook Lives in our private facebook group.

And I always answer it the same exact way,

Each time you have to “restart” the no contact rule it loses a bit of effectiveness.

Think of it this way,

This graph is probably the best representation of what failing the no contact rule looks like.

Notice how the very first time you attempt the no contact rule you are going to get what I call “maximum effectiveness.” In other words, the no contact rule is going to work best on your ex the first time you try it.

But let’s say you fail at staying consistent throughout your whole time frame.

What then?

Well, the second time you try the no contact rule it’s going to still be effective but not quite as effective as the very first time you tried it.

It loses a little bit of the magic that made it so powerful the first time around.

But why?

Well, quite frankly human beings are wired to notice patterns.

One can certainly make the argument that our whole lives are patterns.

Your ex isn’t dumb and they will eventually catch on to the fact that every once in a while you seem to be flat out ignoring them.

The most naive statement I’ve ever heard in my time here on EBR is that it’s ok to fail the no contact rule.

I’d argue very heavily against that because of the fact that you are “watering down” arguably the best strategy for getting your ex back.

Take a look at the graphic I created above.

In this particular case you have a person who has failed the no contact rule 3 times.

Look how ineffective the no contact rule can become by that fourth time they attempt it.

It’s lost almost half of it’s effectiveness.

So, the question now shifts to how you can stay in the no contact rule.

My Best Tip On Staying Strong During The No Contact Rule

I’m not going to sit here and give you what you are expecting me to give you.

Most people expect for me to make a list of tips to “keep them strong.”

Truthfully, making a list and journaling to keep your thoughts focus don’t work for staying strong during the no contact rule.

Shocking, right?

In fact, in all the years I’ve been doing this I’ve only seen one thing make an impact on “staying in no contact.”

  1. Finding a way to hold yourself accountable

In case you didn’t know, whenever you coach with me or one of the Ex Recovery Coaches you’ll gain access to all of our products including our private Facebook support group.

Now, I know that doesn’t seem like a big deal but it is.

You see, on our Facebook Group we institute something called,

“Battle Buddies.”

For any who want it.

Essentially we partner you up with someone else who is going through a breakup and allow you to support each other through each of your situations.

It’s especially great at keeping you strong during the no contact rule.


Because any time you have a desire to contact your ex you’ll end up contacting your battle buddy instead and they can keep you strong.

35 thoughts on “What To Do If You Fail Your No Contact Rule (Will It Work A Second Time?)”

  1. Avatar


    June 12, 2019 at 1:52 pm

    I need some coaching. Me and my ex has been in a relationship and lived in the same roof for 6 and half years. He broke up with me and went to rent a place to where his co workers are staying at. It was already too late since I read this no contact rule since i had been bombarding him with text and call for 2 weeks since we broke up. I started the no contact rule for 8 days but he sent me a message he needed to come home to get some clothes. After that I started with the no contact again but on the 7th day my sister texted him about the bills so I had to text him back not to worry about it and I will take care of it. 2 days after, I needed to call him about the tv cable service since his name was written as the owner of the service.

    Now I’m worried because on July, I’m planning to move to another unit condo, and we have to settle the things here.

    Will the no contact rule wears down and became not effective? I’ve been really wanted for him to come back and realise that we could still work out our relationship.

    Please help me.

    1. Chris Seiter

      Chris Seiter

      June 12, 2019 at 6:52 pm

      Hi Jean…. you may want to check out our Coaching Services on the website. I think Anna, lead Senior Coach, would be excellent.

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    May 25, 2019 at 4:20 pm

    I dont even know where to start but I need help. My boyfriend and I have been together for about 5 years. I moved to another city and moved him here as well to restart our lives together. He got himself together and now it seems as though since he got himself together now he wants to experience this city being single. Last week I left him because I felt that things weren’t right with us. It seemed like we were together just because he didnt want to tell me to leave. When I grabbed all my things to go, he didnt stop me. The next day I came back begging and pleading only for him to tell me that he is done with me and slammed the door in my face. I came to his job to talk only for him to tell me to leave. I sent him several text messages that he never responded to. He made it clear that he doesnt want anything to do with me and he wants me out of his life forever. I’m just left with hurt. What will it take for him to love me again like I love him?.. All he did was accuse me of lying and cheating and I never did any of that but he is strong in his accusations. Anytime I try to prove anything else to him otherwise, he says I’m lying when i know I’m not. He is the only person i have now, i have lost everything i have trying to hold on to him. What do i do?

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    May 20, 2019 at 9:40 pm

    Me and my ex boyfriend broke up a week ago and I still want to be with him. His uncle died at the same time so he hasn’t wanted to talk to me which is understandable. We have had many arguments and nearly broke up. He said his looked at things differently now since losing his Uncle, he said he doesn’t think I’m going to change (I was very needy and suffocating) and that he doesn’t want to be with me or give it another try. It’s took me actually losing him and being blocked off social media to realise that I want to change, he said it’s too late for him and that I should change for someone else. I started off no contact and I broke it today, I told him I want to change and show him. He said he doesn’t want to and that our relationship is over. Do you think I should attempt no contact again? I feel like I’ve completely lost him.

  4. Avatar


    May 1, 2019 at 10:27 pm

    Hi Chris,

    I would like some advice really. My relationship has just ended after 6 years and I have already done no contact once, we starting talking two weeks in and met up the week after, I am feeling I came on too strong again however he has major life changes to focus on at the minute. He seems to be given loads of mixed signals…. I’m so confused. He messaged about 2 weeks ago but I ignored him and haven’t messaged him since, i feel awful for doing it. He seems to be doing different things every 2 weeks which makes me think I’m still on his mind. Do you think no contact will work again and for how long?

  5. Avatar


    April 15, 2019 at 12:14 pm

    Hey Chris ,
    So I had been doing no contact for a week when my ex contacted me and asked me how I was and I said I was good and asked him how he was. He said he wasn’t good at all and I asked him what’s wrong. He said it doesn’t matter and I should leave it. Then he completely changed the topic and tried to keep the conversation light and breezy. After that, I insisted on asking what was wrong and he wouldn’t tell me. So I gave up and started talking about what he wanted to. He read my messages but hasn’t replied. Ik I broke the no contact rule. I started it again and its been 11 days. I am not sure it’s working at all. Did I just lose him forever? Will he ever talk to me again?

    1. Chris Seiter

      Chris Seiter

      April 15, 2019 at 2:24 pm

      Hi JoJo…so I think you are on the right course with No Contact. Just tap into my Program so you are up to speed on how to implement it fully and correctly.

  6. Avatar


    April 13, 2019 at 10:16 am

    Hi Chris my boyfriend broke up with me, he said that his anxiety was too much and that he couldn’t be in a relationship feeling like that, I tried the no contact rule but after a few days cracked and text him to see if he was ok, I text him 3 times in the week, I was wondering if I start the no contact rule now will we still have a chance of getting back togeather

  7. Avatar


    April 4, 2019 at 11:56 pm

    Hi Chris
    We broke up 1.5 weeks ago after I discovered he had lied repeatedly about something which he knew would totally destroy my trust. He tried to make amends but he has a history with this and I had had enough. He then turned around and did the whole ‘You can’t fire me, I quit!’ thing, so as far as who broke up with whom, it’s a bit mixed up. But he wanted to keep our friendship, i.e. he wanted all the benefits of my support, my company etc but didn’t want to feel guilty about doing bad ‘relationshippy’ things. I don’t want that as it’d just end up messy (we had a very close friendship and he always says I am the most important thing in his life).
    We talked for a few days but I told him we couldn’t stay friends as he’d destroyed that foundation. But he kept texting me. Romantic poems, updates about his life with nothing to address what had happened, wanting to chat, all over several days. I didn’t respond to anything. Then he sent something which seemed like he was trying to diminish what he’d done. Later he texted asking if I was ok, maybe I wasn’t coping… I didn’t want him thinking I wasn’t responding because I was too sad to talk. In the past, I’ve always said a lot, so I think this approach really threw him and I think that he sent it with the aim of making me bite.
    So, I stupidly bit and replied that I am fine and then my typical need to express myself came out and I said I didn’t want to hear excuses for his lies, I’d had enough. So, I broke NC and said too much which I think was playing right into his hands. He didn’t respond but I think he will be in touch again. I feel like I’ve undone things and I don’t know what to do next. I love him and am not sure about getting back together but I do want him to acknowledge what he’s done to our friendship and how much he’s lost – maybe that’s being selfish and not the right aim of NC but it would help me whether it was in us getting back together or in me moving on from him. Do you think NC will be ok to continue with now or have I ruined it?

  8. Avatar


    March 31, 2019 at 10:05 pm

    I need help. I was able to complete my 30day no contact rule. We broke up last Feb.15. He blocked me on facebook. On March 20, he started sending me messages. Yes, i’m still in love with him and still hopes to get him back. We exchanged messages for a few days. I thought things were doing great. Until i was able to get an access on his facebook messenger 2 days ago. There, i saw that he was flirting with a couple of women while he was talking to me. I also saw that he’s in a secret relationship with someone while he was flirting with others. All these happened after my 30day no contact. I am still blocked on his account. He doesn’t know that time that i knew those things until i think he got a hunch that i have been spying on his messenger so he changed the password. He was talking with me normally the night he got that hunch. And then he suddenly stopped everything. No messages from him. And honestly, i have been so anxious. I am not myself and i do not know what to do. I don’t know if i should reach out and message him. I dont know if i should do no contact again and until when. We had plans on meeting up this coming april 27th. But no messages from him since the change of password. If i did the no contact rule again, i will have to cancel that plan. I am lost and i do not know what to do. Please help. thank you.

    1. Chris Seiter

      Chris Seiter

      April 1, 2019 at 10:35 pm

      Hi Ampy….it sounds like you need to spend a lot more time on “you” and your healing and recovery and personal growth. You will want to find that emotional balance so you can better deal with everything that comes along. Before deciding to go into No Contact, just wait awhile and see how things unfold.

  9. Avatar


    March 7, 2019 at 11:04 pm

    Hi Chris! My boyfriend of almost 2 years broke up with me about 6 months ago. We’ve continued interacting, and it felt like everything was going great. However every time I ask to get back together, he claims that he only sees me as a friend. I couldn’t take it anymore and we started fighting a few weeks ago because I believed he was using me as a backup. We haven’t really talked since then, and when I did reach out to apologize a few days ago he was very cold and aloof, refusing to meet and saying it’s best if we don’t talk for a while and that he won’t change his mind. Would NC still work in this situation?

    1. Chris Seiter

      Chris Seiter

      March 8, 2019 at 2:28 am

      Hi Jenny!

      So yes, if the past tactics have gotten you little traction, time for a change and NC could be the right medicine.

  10. Avatar

    Please Help

    March 3, 2019 at 6:19 pm

    Hi again Chris, I broke NC to tell my ex to stop viewing my Snapchat stories & screenshooting them (selfies of me) we broke up a week ago but I did it through text and blocked him immediately after my sister saw him at her work with his ex before me (she and I are going to court in a week over her physically assaulting me) with that being said he texted me saying to get my stuff. I told him to throw it out. He asked even the wallet? I said yes. (I have all my cards with me the wallet had rewards stuff) then he demanded he wanted his sweater back and to tell someone he wants it back. I told him I will have a friend drop it off somehow to him if I give his number to correspond. He got really upset and said no he just wants me to figure it out and get my stuff back. I told him I don’t want it and I’ll figure it out. Last thing he said was “you didn’t even ask me what I was doing that day so I find this all funny” then I ignored that part of the message and told him I’ll figure out dropping off his stuff to him and blocked him. He still seems very angry and in denial of doing anything wrong. Millions of things are going through my head like she is pregnant and that’s why he’s with her, seems only logical explanation why he would hurt me by being with her again and why he freaked out whenever I wanted to go to her town to this restaurant. It’s eating me up when I been nothing but honest and faithful to him and I thought he felt the same way by telling me he wanted us to build a future and family to this. I started NC again but what if he somehow messages about his things again. Or goes into the subject of “that day?”

    1. Chris Seiter

      Chris Seiter

      March 3, 2019 at 6:28 pm

      Hi there…yep…our minds can race with all kinds of thoughts about all kinds of crazy scenarios when we are in the vulnerable state following a breakup. Just know that your worst fears are seldom right. Keep your focus on those things you should be doing during NC. I cover them all in great detail in my 485 page eBook, “Ex Boyfriend Recovery Pro”, so pick that up if you haven’t already as it will serve as your Companion Guide during the NC process and afterwords.

  11. Avatar


    January 22, 2019 at 8:27 pm

    My ex gf dumped me I tried everything to get her,she promised me she will return when ill be well settle person will good job I did for her everything she contacted me reached out to me,but slow slow she ignored me and later on I found she looking someone else and she start drinking alcohol I inform her parents,and her sister her sister tried to help me out for getting her back but later on my girlfriend manipulate her then her sister against me she insult me and all me and my ex gf was in 9years strong relationship strong connection,I feel like she still missing me because her friends inform me she sits alone and all the time she thinking something, please help me what should I do? please help me I didn’t try no contact rule yet

    1. Chris Seiter

      Chris Seiter

      January 22, 2019 at 10:29 pm

      Looks like you would benefit from NC.

  12. Avatar


    December 8, 2018 at 2:58 am

    Hi Chris,
    You’re right. We had a good 2-3 days where things felt like we were getting back to normal but now again he said we shouldn’t talk. He says he needs alone time to focus on himself in order to be happy again. This past month he has been so depressed with losing his job and he feels like a stranger in his own home. He’s from new york and moved to australia at 22 to play rugby. He loved it so much he decided to stay and has been living there for the past 4 years. He came back to live in new york in April because he thought he missed his family and that he would get a job and do better over here. He was dating a girl over there for 3.5 years and they actually have a house together that is still being fixed up. He keeps going back and forth about whether he wants to stay here or move back to Australia. How do I win someone back who wants to move away?

  13. Avatar


    December 2, 2018 at 4:49 am

    Hi Chris so once again me and my ex are back together. On Sunday he said he wasn’t feeling this anymore so on Monday I sent him a clean slate text. We have so far broken up 2 times. On Wednesday he calls me 9 times in 12 minutes and texts me non stop. The last text he is very angry at me. I finally text him on Thursday saying that I just need some space and I wasn’t trying to be rude. He answers back that he overreacted and that he would like to call me. We speak and he’s like i miss you so much. I care about you and love you and think you are a good fit for me. We wind up doing dinner and everything goes back to normal but then again 2 days later he’s acting weird and keeps saying something is missing. I’ve been a little distant because I don’t want to come off as needy and he accused me of not being into him. He’s so lovey dovey when we get back together and then goes back to being his normal self the next day. He got laid off a month ago and ever since then things have been so weird between us. I don’t know what to do anymore. What the heck with all the back and forth? Why does he keep doing this and what should I do?

    1. Chris Seiter

      Chris Seiter

      December 2, 2018 at 5:10 pm

      Hi Michelle…its kind of crazy isn’t it for a guy who isn’t “feeling it” to invest so much time and energy trying to contact you. He does seem emotionally unstable and perhaps he should consider exploring some counseling for his own good as this back and forth is not emotionally healthy. You should consider doing a longer period of no contact. Perhaps he will come to realize that his behavior can not be tolerated or he can lose you forever.

  14. Avatar


    November 19, 2018 at 4:09 am

    Hey Chris,
    We were looking at my facebook together and he saw that I posted something and read what I posted. We’re together now but he is acting differently, like less lovey dovey and being a little distant. I don’t know why I have it in my head that he is talking to another girl. What do I do if i’m actually in a relationship with him? Give him space? Thank you!

  15. Avatar


    November 17, 2018 at 5:56 am

    Hey Chris,

    So after 2 days of no contact my ex contacts me. He calls and texts and is extremely angry saying he wants to drop my things off and that I’m being very rude. I answer saying we both decided on space and that I was focusing on myself. He says he wants to see me and talk and see if there is still a spark. We wind up seeing each other and he is very lovey dovey saying that he misses me and wants to get back together. We get back together. I actually posted in the FB group earlier that day explaining my situation and what I should do about it (because he kept calling and texting) and he actually happened to see it. So he now knows my game plan was to do a 21 day no contact rule. He wasn’t mad but I think in his eyes he thought I was so strong when I was ignoring him. I’m just thinking if he breaks up with me again he knows what I will do. That makes me really nervous and I don’t know if its in my head that he’s now acting differently. I don’t know if it’s because he read my post in the EBR group, or that we are now back together, or i’m just overthinking everything. Any adivce?

    1. Chris Seiter

      Chris Seiter

      November 18, 2018 at 7:35 pm

      Hi Michelle!

      Well, he must be some super duper detective to have found you on the ERP Group as it is very hard to find and he would not be able to read any post you made unless he was a member of the Group.. What matters is sticking with your ex recovery plan and focusing on your own healthy recovery.

  16. Avatar


    October 19, 2018 at 2:16 am

    Hi Chris.

    I was with my fiance for over 2 and half years and we have a baby together. We ended up in long distant relationship and in the last 3 months he has been hot cold with me. 2 weeks ago he said it was over and i started the nc he made contact and ignored him except when he asked about baby. Last night we ended up talking but it the conversation was mainly based on our baby. Will i need to start the nc all over ?

    1. Chris Seiter

      Chris Seiter

      October 19, 2018 at 3:07 am

      Hi Natasha!

      When you share a baby, it is important that some communications occur…so in those cases NC becomes limited No Contact. No, you won’t need to extend NC. Maybe extend it a bit. Its a flexible principle and has to be adapted for your situation.

  17. Avatar


    October 16, 2018 at 12:15 pm

    Hi Chris!

    Long story short: he broke up with me, we saw each other 3 days later to exchange our things and he told me that he would prefer a break and to let him know if I would also like a break instead. 1 week later I told him that a break was a good idea because he told me that he regretted breaking up and that he wanted us back. I was so happy. We talked for 1 week on and off(and got intimate, big mistake I know) and he went back to not wanting to be in a relationship, but still wanting the break. 3 days later I decided that the break was too hard on me and that it was better if we broke up for good but we decided together to reevaluate in 3 months after some time apart.
    Now I’m scared that I messed everything up by not doing NC properly the first time around and have been doing NC for 10 days, but I have to see him on day 14 because of an event.
    Is it too late to get my ex back?

    Thank you for your help

    1. Chris Seiter

      Chris Seiter

      October 17, 2018 at 1:19 am

      Hi Sam!

      If you are not confident in how you are executing your No Contact Rule strategy, then consider picking up my eBook, “The No Contact Rule Book”. Its 247 pages in length and goes into great detail.

  18. Avatar


    October 13, 2018 at 3:28 am

    Hi Chris,

    So I’m still in the middle of my NC contact period. I know you recommend on your site moving on without moving on and trying to maybe go on a date with someone else while in NC. I’m not really ready to meet someone new. So I was wondering if it would be ok to go on a date with another former ex? (One I’m completely over.) Or is that a really bad idea? This former ex asked me to meet up. And I don’t know, it would just be nice to have a distraction and I rather hang out with someone I know. Thanks.

    1. Chris Seiter

      Chris Seiter

      October 14, 2018 at 9:58 pm

      Hi Kristen!

      Its up to you. What matters is what makes you happy. if it stirs up a little jealousy, fine. But the key is your emotional health and gaining some perspective and enjoying life’s moments. Also, feel free to pick up my 247 page eBook, “The No Contact Rule Book” if you want to take a deeper five into the NC process

  19. Avatar


    October 11, 2018 at 11:28 pm

    Hi I’m already on my 28th of NC when he contacted me, so I replied him. Is this considered as “failing”? Also, how do you determine if you should apply 21 days, 30 days or 60 days of NC?

    1. Chris Seiter

      Chris Seiter

      October 12, 2018 at 3:03 am

      I don’t think so. NC periods can range 21 to 45 days. You should go pick up one of my Ebooks so you are up to speed on all aspects of the process.

  20. Avatar


    October 10, 2018 at 6:05 am

    Would it be considered “failing” if I have gone completely no contact on him for almost a full year? Neither of us has tried initiating contact and i’m too stubborn and worried that i will seem needy if i’m the first person to contact him. I truly miss him and want to give us a shot but i dont want to look weak

    1. Chris Seiter

      Chris Seiter

      October 11, 2018 at 4:46 am

      Hi Sylvia!

      You should pick up my eBook and take a close look at my program! I think 1 year of both people being stubborn leaves too much in the uncertainty department. Better to reach out softly in the way I discuss in my books to get a read on where things stand.

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