By Chris Seiter

Updated on February 7th, 2021

Today we’re going to talk about one of my favorite topics – the no contact rule.

Specifically, we’re going to look at why it’s one of the most effective and recommended strategies out there. How are we going to do this?

Great question, we are going to look at both the psychological reasons it works and merge it with the real life applications I’ve noticed my clients have seen.

Let’s start with the basics.

What Are Your Chances of Getting Your Ex Boyfriend Back?

Take the quiz

What Is A No Contact Rule?

The no contact rule is a period of time where you ignore your ex on purpose with the intent of making them miss you, while at the same time reshaping your life in whatever image you want.

So the standard no-contact whatsoever version of the no contact rule works for just about everyone out there, but there are always exceptions.

For example, you can’t really ignore your ex 100% of the time if you work with them or if you have kids together.

So the no contact rule can be adjusted according to your situation, but for MOST people out there, a typical basic no contact rule is the most effective way to go.

Is The No Contact Rule Actually Effective? 

Recently I’ve been interviewing success stories of people who went through my program and got their exes back because I wanted to get to the bottom of what actually worked for them.

Here’s what I learned:

100% of those success stories report using some sort of no contact rule.

To put it in even broader terms, 95% of women in our private Facebook support group (accessible only to people who purchase our program) have used a no contact rule as well.

So there’s really no question in whether the no contact rule is effective, but here’s the deal – the no contact rule alone cannot guarantee that you’ll get your ex back.

There’s a lot more than goes into this process but the no contact rule is the perfect foundation that you can build upon for getting your ex back.

Why our no contact time frames make the most sense.

Here at ex-boyfriend recovery, we approach the no contact rule in a really unique way because we’ve come up with three specific time frames for ignoring your ex:

  1. 21 days
  2. 30 days
  3. 45 days

Now, I don’t want to get into the specifics of which no contact period is perfect for your situation (because I’ve already talked about it a lot on my website and youtube channel), but what I do want to talk about is why we don’t recommend longer periods of no contact.

And that really boils down to a concept that I like to call the habit rule.

The habit rule – on average it takes about 70 days to make or break a habit.

What does this have to do with the no contact rule?

Think of this 70 day average as a time crunch for you because after that point your ex might get too used to not having you around. In other words, if your ex truly wants to get over you, the fastest, on average, they can get over you by is about 70 days.

This is why we don’t recommend anything close to a 60-day no contact rule or a 90-day no contact rule because those longer periods are like giving your ex a great opportunity to get over you. The closer you get to that 70 day average, the more likely it is that your ex will stop reaching out to you or stop caring about whether you’re ignoring them.

What Are Your Chances of Getting Your Ex Boyfriend Back?

Take the quiz

I personally believe that a lot of the success we’ve had at ex-boyfriend recovery is because our no contact rule is built around this foundation of timing. We simply don’t take the unnecessary risk of ignoring an ex for so long that they move on.

So yeah, whether you like it or not, timing is critical in your situation because your ex isn’t going to wait around to change their mind for you. You have a limited window of opportunity and the no contact rule needs to be used in a way that understands this.

The 70 day clock to get your ex back starts ticking right after your breakup and to get your ex back, you’ll always need to have satisfying conversations with them. We talk a lot about those conversations on our website, but today is about how and why the no contact rule helps to give you an edge in those conversations. After all, if your ex dumped you, you need to build up some confidence and power before you talk to them again.

Three Key Psychological Concepts On Why No Contact Works

After really sitting down and thinking about it I determined that there are three key concepts that power the no contact rule.

Most people only care about the end result,

A no contact rule making an ex miss them

But they fail to grasp WHY that happens.

That’s what this section is all about.

Let’s begin.

Concept # 1: It Taps Into The Theory Of Reactance

The theory of reactance states that if you ignore someone or take away a behavioral freedom from them, they will try to re-obtain that freedom.

We see this all the time with small children.

Let’s say you give a child a cookie.

They’re really excited about this cookie, then all of a sudden you take it away. What are they gonna do? They’re gonna try to get it back, right?

I agree that this may not be the perfect analogy because your ex isn’t a child (even if he acts like one), but the fundamental idea of wanting something back that was taken away from you is very relevant to the no contact rule.

You might be thinking that if you’re the cookie in this analogy, why would your ex react if he dumped you? Well, your ex might have thrown the cookie down by dumping you, but that doesn’t mean he was ready for you to take the cookie away completely.

By completely removing yourself from his life during the no contact rule, you can drive your ex nuts because he sees that he’s lost any future opportunity he could have had with you.

But what’s interesting here is we’ve also learned that most men who go through breakups will not reach out to you during a no contact. Don’t let that discourage you because it doesn’t mean no contact is ineffective, it just means they are prideful and stubborn and are waiting for you to reach out first.

Concept # 2: It Allows You Time To Let Go

Last week I talked about one of my favorite concepts – why letting go of your ex may be the key to getting them back.

I know it’s not exactly the most revolutionary idea but even I was surprised at how prevalent this “moving on without moving on” mentality was in all our success story interviews. Each success story reported having a paradigm shift during the no contact rule because they used their time in a productive way that helped them get over the breakup.

They were able to get to a point where they truly could not care less whether their ex came back or not. Getting to that perfect “take it or leave it” mindset, where you’re willing to lose your ex, is the ultimate key to unlocking the confidence necessary for your ex to want to be a part of your life again.

This is easier said than done though because women put men on pedestals, especially after a breakup – pedestals that they don’t deserve to be on.

What Are Your Chances of Getting Your Ex Boyfriend Back?

Take the quiz

Most of the people that work with me are getting broken up with. In other words, it’s their ex thinking they can do better and that “hard to get” concept will automatically make you want your ex more.
After all, you had him and he slipped through your fingers.

Here’s the thing though, if you keep believing this (and showing him you believe it), why would he come back? It’ll just reinforce his notion that he’s better than you.

We find that to get your ex back, you need to be on an even playing field, and getting to this concept of letting go gives you that power. It not only helps you move forward but enhances your overall “Ungettable mindset” as well, which is the key to a successful no contact rule.

A lot of times, people just use a no contact rule, expecting an ex to miss them and come running back. Yeah, sometimes it works, but for the most part, it isn’t that simple.

Most of the time you need to use your time with a no contact rule wisely so that you allow yourself to have this paradigm shift of looking at your situation in a more hopeful way by spending the no contact period on yourself!

Concept # 3. Unpredictability Raises Your Perceived Value

This concept stems from the two things that I believe all humans need out of relationships: stability and mystery.

I know these are on the opposite ends of the behavioral spectrum and sound like a paradox but having a healthy balance between them is critical to a healthy relationship.

On one hand, we want stability – someone to just Netflix and chill with and rely on.

On the other hand, we want a bit of unpredictability and excitement in our lives too.

More often than not, relationships fall apart because there’s too much focus on one aspect (usually stability). This is when people get so used to stability that they become complacent and stop trying to make any efforts to experience new things.

This is why one of the most common reasons guys break up with you is because they feel like they have already peeled back all the layers and know everything there is to know about you.

Your ex might have realized that cozy Netflix marathons and fireplace wine sessions just aren’t cutting it for him anymore. What he wants and craves is the unpredictability.

Well, what’s more unpredictable than implementing a no contact rule and completely ignoring your ex?

Your ex probably expected you to respond to the breakup in one of two ways: wanting to stay friends or crying and pleading for him back.

But you’re gonna take him by surprise and not say a word to him, even if he reaches out to you.

This will make him super curious and confused because he did not expect you to do this. You’re being unpredictable and our brains love unpredictability because the highs are higher than if we got the desired reward all of the time.

This unpredictability factor is a huge reason why the no contact rule is so effective on exes because there’s no explanation for why you just up and ignored them. That way, when you actually start talking again, your ex will be on his toes and pay extra attention to you!


The no contact rule works incredibly well because of these three factors:

  1. It taps into the theory of reactance – when you take something away, they want it more.
  2. It allows you time to focus on yourself and possibly move on
  3. It’s unpredictable and that intrigues your ex.

What to Read Next

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

13 thoughts on “Why Is The No Contact Rule So Effective?”

  1. Jaina

    November 5, 2020 at 11:11 pm

    So my ex and I broke up about week ago after dating for about 10 months, and we work together. He’s planning on moving to another city within the next year (only a few hours away from where I live), so he broke up with me because he felt like long distance wouldn’t work because he’d miss me too much, and he just has a bad perception of long distance relationships from what he’s seen from other relationships. I was and still am willing to move with him at a later stage (I’m studying whilst working, so I want to finish that first), but he said he’d feel guilty that I would move just for him and thinks that I said it as an in the moment thing. He can be quite stubborn, so I know he has a pretty fixed mindset. I want him back, but I don’t know what to do…I haven’t spoken to him outside of work, but how would the no contact rule work if I have to contact him at least a few times a week for work?

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      November 8, 2020 at 10:11 am

      Hi Jaina, so when you are in would you would speak to him on a professional level – do not engage in small talk just work topics when you need/must. Otherwise attempt to keep your distance.

  2. Anni

    October 31, 2020 at 11:08 am

    We are in 6 years of relationship. About 2.5 month ago he brokeup with me because i said hursh word to him for not meeting me and left town for work. I was so hurt that he didn’t meet me. Then he said because of my hursh behaviour he couldn’t concentrate and lost his project. So he doesn’t see future with me. He couldn’t tolerate me. I always create problems and fight. Giving pressure for marriage. And when i tried to reach him he blocked me from everywhere possible way of contacting. I kept trying to contact him for 2.5 month was saying sorry but he just went angry every time and said dont try to contact. Now i am in no contact for 15 days. I just miss him i cant imagine my life without him. How long I should continue NC period?

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      October 31, 2020 at 3:58 pm

      Hi Anni, so I would suggest that you follow the 30 days No Contact for now, and re assess how you are feeling around day 28 and extend to 45 if you feel you need more time to work on yourself. Read more articles about how to be the ungettable girl and work on yourself. Read articles that apply to your break up or relationship and follow the advice given to become the best version of yourself before reaching out to your ex.

  3. Stephanie

    October 18, 2020 at 8:03 pm

    Does no contact work with someone you were only seeing for a short time? Like 3 weeks? I screwed up early & he took it as a red flag & wished me the best of luck. It was weird though because he reiterated that his feelings were real during the goodbye. I haven’t said anything since.

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      October 19, 2020 at 8:14 pm

      Hi Stephanie yes it can work but you need to make it a 21 day NC and make sure that you do not cause any more red flags for him

  4. Sarah

    October 7, 2020 at 9:26 am

    Should I continue no contact if my exes mom died and he’s grieving? She passed away over a month ago. I went to visit when she passed away.

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      October 7, 2020 at 11:38 am

      Hi Sarah, yes go into a no contact. You’ve paid your respects, and shown you were there at the time. It may feel heartless but now you need to follow the program

  5. Rachael Hunt

    October 1, 2020 at 7:51 am

    My boyfriend broke up with me 5 weeks ago because he didn’t see a future anymore. We were together over 2 years and still loved each other very much. I have been implementing the NC rule but he doesn’t have social media so isn’t able to see if I post about my life being so ‘great’. I also am too scared to ignore his messages because we’re on good terms so it would be very rude of me to do so. I really want him back because we were perfect and he doesn’t know why he doesn’t see a future anymore. Any idea if I can change his mind because he doesn’t have a reason why? Thank you

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      October 4, 2020 at 9:05 pm

      Hi Rachael, if you want to follow this program then you need to start with a NC so keep this in mind. If you work on yourself and your Holy Trinity then you can show him how great you’re doing and not hung up on the break up

  6. Sarah

    September 10, 2020 at 11:41 pm

    My ex and I took a break after 3 months because we kept arguing. But a few weeks later his mom got sick and then he couldn’t date so we never figured out our break. We kept in touch throughout his difficulties. But it’s been 4 months since our relationship ended and he was busy dealing with the parent’s illness. We kept in touch and I tried to be supportive. But his mom passed away 2 weeks ago and I went to visit once. But what do I do now? No contact? How do I get him back? Or do I have to wait because he’s in mourning?

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      September 11, 2020 at 9:13 pm

      Hey Sarah you go into a no contact, but you need to take into account that he is mourning. Focus on yourself for the time being

  7. S

    August 28, 2020 at 5:12 pm

    I am in NC, 40 days for now and I’m not ending it until he speaks to me, if that happens. He’s in a crazy rebound relationship (three months, long distance and, despite having seen each other literally three times, she’s gonna leave everything, house, permanent job and all to move with him) and because of certain circumstances, the Being There method can’t be used. So I remain in NC.
    He kept checking my social media until a few weeks ago, when he stopped watching my snapchat stories. However, lately he liked a few pictures of my instagram. I’m not liking his, even if he’s barely posting, just a couple of pics lately; he used to be very active in social media but since he’s with her he is not keeping touch with almost anyone except for her and her friends (but she does and posts a lot about how perfect their relationship is). The honeymoon period should have ended but doesn’t seem to do it (at least, she is always showing off that their love is amazing, the healthiest relationship ever and all that).

    I will remain in undefined NC. But can I do anything else? Being the best UG (I’m getting good at that) is not working if he does’t check my stories. That recent likes were weird (also, it was from #tbt pictures from the times we were better, nothing to do with “us”, just pictures of me at that time), the only “contact” we had in a month and a half, but if he doesn’t even check my snapchat anymore to know what I’m up to… I don’t know.