So you recently split from your boyfriend or girlfriend, and the pain of your breakup has you feeling lonely and heartbroken, missing your old flame. Before you start planning how to get your ex back, there are some deep questions to ask yourself about your mindset and relationship habits, especially when it comes to the way you fall in love.
After breaking up with a person they love, some people fall into depression and refuse to get out of bed in the mornings — or even in the afternoons, for that matter. Others spend their days on social media, analyzing and dissecting their ex’s every move with friends (“What was he doing at a wine bar? He’s a beer guy!”).
Regardless of what breakups look like for you, it’s only human to want what you had when it was good. As the old saying goes, “You never know what you have until it’s gone,” so it’s natural to want to stop the pain by rekindling your past relationship and falling in love with your ex all over again.
Breakups hurt, and the pain of heartbreak isn’t something anyone wants to feel.
So just like you pop an aspirin when you have a headache, your painful broken heart might have you thinking about how you can get back together with your ex, if only so you can stop hurting so bad. The Internet knows this, of course, and that’s why everyone and their goldfish has a blog filled with promises of mind tricks that are sure to get your ex eating right out your hand.
You can watch video after video about how to make an ex jealous or how to make them want you more than they ever have before. You can read step-by-step guides on leaving them seething with jealousy or regretting the day they told you it was over.
But creating a second chance isn’t about schemes and games — it’s about rediscovering the love you once had. And the way you do this is to discover yourself first.
Yep, you heard that right. It’s about you, and not them.
Instead of asking, “How do I get my ex back?”, ask yourself, “Why do I want my ex back in the first place?
Now, your answer might be a bit of a tricky one. Some people pursue an ex merely because they want the comfort of a partnership. They might not want to be with their ex, but see that as a better option than being alone. This is a common reason to reunite with a former partner, and it’s also a trap you must avoid.
To make sure you want to reunite for the right reasons, be completely honest with yourself about why you want to get your ex back. Slow down and think — really think — about why you want to reconnect with your lost love. If any of your answers, even a sliver, have to do with fear — like the fear of being alone, the fear of not having a date to the Journey concert in July, or the fear of having to hire a personal escort to pick you up from your wisdom tooth extraction — rethink your plan.
No one, including your ex, wants to be used. Once you remove fear from the equation, your motivations grow true and clear. They grow into a foundation you can build upon. So, that’s the first step — recognizing why you want to reignite the flame. If fear is an issue, you must face it before you can proceed.
Wanting your ex back because you’re afraid of being alone doesn’t necessarily mean you don’t really love your ex, it just means you want a real partner, too. They’re not mutually exclusive. But if you just want a relationship to avoid feeling alone and your ex simply seems like the easiest choice, you have a major issue to resolve.
A relationship with your ex, if you do reunite, will exist precariously. Any hint of conflict will be enough to affect it. Let’s say that you want both — your ex and a partner.
How do you make certain you’re not reacting out of fear?
By facing that fear and getting comfortable being alone with yourself before you set “Operation: Reignite” into motion. Face your fears first, and then you can focus on coming from the most important place you can, the only place you can: the place of love.
This isn’t to say that there’s a quick fix — there isn’t. Reigniting the flame with an ex the right way typically devolves into a void of games, manipulation, and other band-aid like answers. When it comes to second chances, work is required. But, when it comes to real love, the work is worth it.