When a relationship ends, it’s all too easy to fall back in love, whether that means going back to your previous partner or finding someone new. If you’ve ever sought relationship therapy, you’ve probably been told that you must first love yourself before you can truly love another person. So what do you do when the relationship counseling has failed and you find yourself alone and unattached?
The best relationship advice you’ll ever hear is this: take care of yourself and the rest will follow. There are a multitude of things you can do to keep your mind off of love and avoid falling back into it. Unless, of course, that means falling in love with living your own life by your own standards. These 25 ideas will help you get started on embracing life without falling back in love.
- Take up the whole bed. Go ahead and spread out. Sprawl! That bed is all yours, so sleep big and take up the whole thing. You might just get the best sleep of your entire life.
- Get in shape. Join a gym. Get up early and run every morning. Find something you enjoy and get in the best physical shape of your life.
- Learn a foreign language. Choose a language you’ve always wanted to learn. It doesn’t have to be one that’s practical. Remember, this is for you and only you. Take a class, invest in Rosetta stone or download a free app. Dedicate yourself to 30 minutes or more every day and before you know it, you’ll be speaking like a bilingual pro.
- Volunteer. Donate your time to a good cause, doing something that you enjoy. You’ll be appreciated and gain self-esteem along with the warm fuzzies that inevitably come from volunteer work. In fact, studies have shown time and time again that people who volunteer regularly are actually happier than those who don’t!
- Become an expert. Pick a topic that has always interested you and dive head-first into researching it. Read up online, visit your local library or even take a class.
- Visit a friend. Finally take a trip to visit that friend who moved away. You know the one. You’ve been promising to visit for months or even years, but just never quite made it. Call them up, make the arrangements and do it now.
- Get a hobby. Take up painting. Learn how to knit. Build model cars. Just pick a hobby and give it a try! If you don’t like one, move on to another. You’ll soon find that there’s something out there you really enjoy doing that you’ve been missing all along.
- Learn to play an instrument. Pick up a new one or become reacquainted with an instrument you played in high school. Music has a way of lifting the spirit like nothing else.
- Fly a kite. Okay, maybe not literally. Just do something silly. Take yourself back to being a carefree kid, unhindered by worries of what other people thought. Re-learn silliness. Teach yourself to play with abandon again.
- Get a pet. If you’ve always wanted a furry friend, adopt the new love of your life from your local shelter. Just be sure that you have the time to care for a pet and that you’re willing to make the commitment of caring for an animal for the duration of its life before you take the plunge.
- Take up yoga or meditation. Learn to relax and quiet your mind. You might even get super flexible while you’re opening up your chakras.
- Go back to school. Lots of adults are going back to college, so chances are, you’ll fit right in. Find an evening class at your local community college and enroll. What have you got to lose?
- Write a book. Put your memoirs on paper or work on that novel you’ve always had in the back of your mind. Spend a little time writing each day and let your story develop.
- Play the field. Satisfaction is healthy and natural. Be safe and have fun. It’s perfectly okay to fall into bed without falling in love.
- Plan your future. Make plans, daydream and do it in a big way. Make a map of your future life as you want it to be.
- Spend some serious time with your family. Go home for a lengthy visit. Take the time and focus to really get to know your family, both as adults and as friends.
- Become a stop on the couch-surfing circuit. If you have the space, open your home up to couch-surfers. Travelers do have the best stories to tell, after all. You’ll be surprised the things you might learn and the amazingly interesting people you’ll have the opportunity to meet!
- Join a meet up group. Choose an activity you enjoy and join a group so you can take part in meetups. You’ll meet new people and make friends with others who share your interests.
- Learn to dance. Sign up for dance lessons and give it a try. You might even turn out to be good at it! Dance lessons are a great way to stay active and social while learning a new skill that will come in handy when you’re ready to get out there and date someone new.
- Practice random acts of kindness. Carry a stranger’s groceries to for them. By a latte for the next person in line at the coffee shop. Any act of kindness—no matter how small—affects others in a big way.
- Learn to cook. Take a class or reach yourself from a book. Learn to make a few really killer meals and host dinner parties for your friends and family.
- Do something that scares you. Whether it’s facing a lifelong phobia or finally striking up a conversation with that stranger you’ve had your eye on at the coffee shop every morning, go for it. You’ve got nothing to lose and plenty of self-confidence to gain.
- Redecorate. Embrace your space and decorate it just like you’ve always wanted to. It’s all yours and there’s no one to stop you so go ahead make it your own!
- Advocate a cause. If there’s any cause (like cancer awareness or preventing cruelty to animals) become an advocate. Join in on charity walks and recruit friends and family. Doing good will make you feel good.
- Identify the traits your ideal partner would have and cultivate them in yourself. It’s no secret that you’ve got to love yourself before you can truly love another person or expect another person to love you. After all, you and yourself are stuck with each other for life, so there’s better time than the present to foster your friendship with yourself and become your own perfect companion.