How to Be Alone After a Breakup

If your relationship just ended, now is actually the perfect time to discover who you are and what you love. You can express yourself, pick up new skills, and focus on your health. There are truly so many ways you can recover and learn how to be alone after a breakup, so we’ll share how to take care of who matters most—yourself.


[Edit]Journal about your feelings.

  1. Writing out your thoughts can give you some relief. Vent about whatever emotions you have. Maybe you feel anxious, angry, or heartbroken. If you take the first step to scribble down your story about the breakup, you’ll understand yourself better.[1]
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    • If you journal every day, your perspective about the breakup will become more and more clear.
    • Over time, you’ll actually be able to come up with some solutions to your problems. For example, you can write, “I never felt like they listened to me. I need to find more people who value my opinions.”
    • Research shows that journaling can help you manage the most difficult emotions that follow a breakup, like grief.

[Edit]Make a breakup playlist.

  1. Choose meaningful songs to express yourself and process emotions. Think about what music would feel the best to you right now. Do you need a good cry, or do you want to get in touch with your inner fighter? You can go for emotional melodies, or you can throw in a bunch of power ballads. Your playlist will be a great outlet for you to let it all out.[2]
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    • Shuffle songs if you have mixed feelings. The random song choice can help you get in touch with every way you feel about the breakup.
    • Make separate playlists, too. For example, you can make one that says “Cry It Out” and another that’s titled “Single Vibes.”
    • Add some throwback hits, too. Research suggests that you’ll feel best when you listen to songs that were popular when you were younger.

[Edit]Call someone and check in.

  1. Reach out to people if you're feeling lonely. Talk to anyone who you trust, like your friends and family. Be vulnerable and share what’s on your mind, then share if you have any specific needs. For example, maybe you’d really like a hug soon. Your loved ones will be happy to comfort you.[3]
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    • If you only have a little energy, you can talk for just 10 minutes. Your mood will still improve a lot.
    • Ask the person you’re calling if it’s a good time to chat. If you need to, you can reschedule with them and check in with someone else.
    • Try to join a support group and talk to others who just went through a breakup. You can attend these meetups online and in person.

[Edit]Make plans with friends and accept invites.

  1. Get your mind off things by going out and socializing. Think about your energy level and then arrange some hang-outs that feel good to you. For example, maybe you’d like to grab coffee with your best friends and chill out. Also make sure to RSVP on social media or via text to anything that sounds fun at the time. You’ll give yourself a lot of fun distractions.[4]
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    • Schedule time with people you can be yourself around and who are really kind to you.
    • Both you and your friends will really benefit when you all go out. When they see you smile or laugh, they’ll love that they can show you a good time.
    • Research suggests that 6 hours of social activity is really good for you. Even if you just talk to people at work or school, those interactions help your emotional health.

[Edit]Go on a nature walk.

  1. Enjoying the outdoors helps you see the bigger picture in your life. Go anywhere that is so gorgeous that you will be swept away with all the details. You can go to a community garden, or you can go on a hike in the woods. When you see beautiful scenery all around you, you’ll realize that your past relationship was just one short chapter for you.[5]
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    • Bring a friend or two if you’re going somewhere more remote, like a forest. You can all collect pine cones or leaves, then arrange them and take a picture to capture the connection you all have.
    • Make sure to dress for the weather so you can really relax. If it’s cold out, put on a coat, and if it’s warm out, wear less layers.
    • Studies show that nature walks stop “rumination,” or any thoughts that you can get stuck on, like worries about your breakup.

[Edit]Work out and eat well.

  1. Taking care of your body will prepare you for your next stage. Create some routines that are easy for you to follow, and make sure to focus on both movement and nutrition. For example, you can go on a jog and eat five servings of fruits and veggies every day. You’ll feel a lot more energy, and you’ll be really proud that you invested in yourself and your future.[6]
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    • Stock up on healthy foods you love and stick to exercise regimens that excite you. For example, maybe you prefer instant oatmeal in the morning and a hip-hop dance routine at night.
    • Make some fun social events, too. For instance, you and your buddies can go to the farmer’s market, throw a potluck, or join some gym classes together.
    • It’s a fun adventure to find out what you like the most. You can try Pilates one weekend, and then rock climbing the next.

[Edit]Redecorate your space.

  1. Giving your space a visual refresh is a fun, distracting project. Take down any mementos from your old relationship, like romantic pictures. If you have any of your ex’s items, ask a friend to give them back to your past partner. Now that your space is totally yours, you can try out a whole new color palette and spruce everything up with tons of fun decor.[7]
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    • You can also breathe new life into your space with just a little bit of effort, too. For example, if you’re on a budget or just want to keep things low-key, you can pick up one potted flower.
    • Decorate your room with a theme that captures the new “you.” For example, if you’d like to be more bold, you can put up some posters of rock stars and frame quotes about courage.
    • If you still live with your ex, try to get out as much as you can. You can go to a cafe, then make a vision board of the new room you’d love.

[Edit]Try guided meditation.

  1. Mindfulness techniques can help you find some peace. Once a day, sit in a quiet place, breathe deeply, and repeat a “mantra,” or hopeful phrase. For example, you can tell yourself, “I will get through this, and I will be okay.” Then, try a “loving kindness” meditation, which lets you wish you and your ex well. Over time, you’ll release your discomfort and attachments.[8]
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    • You can say another mantra like, “I am strong. I am full of love, and I am surrounded by support.”
    • Some “loving kindness” meditations focus on how to forgive your ex. For instance, you can say, “I no longer hold onto my feelings about how you treated me. I wish you peace on your path.”
    • You can also design a “loving kindness” message for yourself. You may even tell yourself, “I forgive myself for my struggles in that relationship. Now, I’m moving forward.”

[Edit]Create some personal resolutions.

  1. Setting goals can help you feel more optimistic about the future. Think of one big vision and then break it into realistic steps. For instance, maybe you’d like to go back to school. You can look up your favorite program, then call up some admissions officers. Make all kinds of new standards for yourself, too. You’ll be so focused on self-improvement that it’ll be really natural to keep looking ahead.[9]
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    • Your milestone might relate to a physical challenge. For example, maybe you’d like to run a 5K in six months. Increase the distance you run over time and you’ll hit that goal.
    • Your new standard might connect to emotional health. For instance, maybe you want to be present. You can focus on “active listening” skills.
    • Your goal might be related to your career path. You may say something like, “I would like to be a social worker one day.” You can look up any job requirements for your ideal position.

[Edit]Try out fun activities.

  1. Exploring new or favorite hobbies can boost your mood. Focus on any interests of yours that relieve your stress and let you unwind. For example, maybe you love a good round of competitive frisbee because it’s a total blast. Also try out some interesting experiments, like a painting class. You’ll totally lose yourself in all the creative ways to spend your time.[10]
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    • A good trick is to picture what it looks like to “goof off.” If the activity feels silly or care-free, then make lots of time for it.
    • You’ll also feel grateful for your own self-care. It’ll feel really nice to focus less on what you think you “have” to do and more on what you want to do.
    • Studies show that if you participate in any activity you are excited about, you’ll lower your blood pressure and “cortisol,” a hormone that creates stress.

[Edit]Learn something new.

  1. Learning a new skill is a healthy way to distract yourself. Research a topic you’ve always been curious about. For example, maybe finally have the opportunity to figure out how you can stream video games. You can study your favorite vloggers, read about the best equipment, and make a blog about your journey. You’ll be so busy finding all the right details that it’ll be all you obsess about.[11]
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    • Try a DIY project, too. It can be for beginners or it can be more advanced. For example, you can make an air plant terrarium, or you can even build a bookshelf.
    • You can sign up for a class, too. Your local city college or community center probably offers a lot of interesting courses. You can take one at any time of the day, from the morning to the evening.
    • You can even teach someone a new skill. For instance, maybe you’re great at knitting. It also takes a lot of focus to mentor people.

[Edit]Volunteer in your community.

  1. Supporting others is a rewarding way to spend your free time. Check in with your friend group and ask how you can help anyone. For example, maybe one of your friends needs a pet sitter for the weekend. Look out for ways to assist even more people, too. You can cook some meals for a local shelter or clean up a beach with a volunteer crew. You’ll value the opportunity to make a difference, and you can make lots of new friends.[12]
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    • The more you and your friends are there for each other, the more you’ll build a sense of trust and your own tight-knit community.
    • You can find a whole new sense of purpose when you help out. For instance, if you tutor some local kids, you may find out you have a passion for education.
    • You can also support people who are far away. For example, you can donate some money to organizations that are overseas.

[Edit]Give yourself time to heal before dating again.

  1. Rushing back into things can sometimes do more harm than good. Devote all the time and mental energy that you’ve freed up to yourself. When you continue to pursue your passions and expand on your skills, you’ll develop lots of independence. There’s always time to meet another special someone later in life, so just enjoy yourself now.[13]
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    • It can be really rewarding to have a lot of time to yourself. You can spend it in so many ways, and you’ll only have to focus on your own schedule.
    • Keep coming up with new challenges to empower yourself. For example, you can say, “I’ll be even more independent when I learn how to drive.”
    • Commit to your own happiness. You can even tell yourself, “I’m ‘the One’ in my life.” Then, just pursue what’s best for you.

[Edit]Reach out to a therapist if you’re struggling.

  1. Breakups are hard and it's okay to ask for help. If you aren’t going outside at all or if your sadness has lasted for months, schedule a session with a therapist. A trained expert will give you a safe space to talk about the ways your breakup affects you. They’ll also teach you strategies to cope with the changes in your life and create new patterns that will benefit you.[14]
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    • There are even therapists that specialize in “breakup counseling.” They’ll know exactly how to help you in your situation and create a recovery plan with you.
    • Share all your challenges with your counselor. Tell them if you struggle with sleeping, eating well, or socializing. They’ll be able to advise you about how to improve your health.
    • If you really click with your therapist, you can keep seeing them even after you’ve healed from your breakup.