Tips To Master The 'No Contact Rule' Because It's Time To Move On

You know you're ready to move on from a relationship when you realize you'll be better off without them. Oftentimes, it's difficult to move on when you've invested tons of time, effort, and energy into the other person. You don't want to believe your investment has gone to waste. Many people in this situation consider staying wrapped up in relationships that aren't worth their time as a way to reject the dark thought of wasted time. 


At the end of the day, it's your decision to figure out when to call it quits to focus on a brighter future. When it comes to healthy dating, you should always choose people who add value to your life by encouraging you, uplifting you, and making you feel happier in your day-to-day experiences. Coming to terms with the fact that your partner isn't someone you're meant to be with is devastating — but not the end of the world. Here's how you can master the "no contact rule" after breaking up with someone who isn't meant to be in your life for the long haul.

Block their number

The most obvious first step to take when going no contact with an ex is blocking their number. When you block their number, it prevents them from being able to reach out to you whenever they feel like it. If your ex is a toxic person, they may do everything they can to weasel their way back into your life. When you block their number, it becomes impossible for them to send those late-night text messages in an attempt to break you down and win you back over. 


In extreme cases, blocking their number won't be enough because they'll still try to reach out from other phone numbers or texting apps. If this is happening, you should consider changing your phone number. After doing so, make sure any mutual friends you have with your ex are willing to keep the new number a secret. 

Block them on social media

When you block your ex on social media, you revoke their visual access to all the updates of your life. If they still have access to your social media accounts, they can see what you're doing, where you're going, and who you're with. Now that you're single, putting yourself out there with new potential suitors is perfectly fine, and you should feel comfortable posting a stunning selfie with a new match before date night. None of this knowledge belongs to your ex.


In more extreme cases, blocking your ex on social media won't be enough because they'll still creep onto your pages from fake accounts. In this case, it may be in your best interest to temporarily put all your profiles on private mode or take a social media break so they won't have visual access to you. This doesn't mean they have to be disabled forever. You can choose the amount of time you're comfortable with.

Delete old pictures

To avoid the risk of wanting to speak to your ex again, you might want to delete any old pictures you have with them. When you look at old photos with your ex, you'll probably get lost in the moment, thinking about all of your happier memories. Remember that people only ever really snap pictures when things are going well to preserve a positive moment in time. 


You might have several pictures with your ex from the places you traveled to, restaurants you've eaten at, and exciting date nights you enjoyed. The majority of these pictures aren't going to depict any of the negativity you experienced, though. Instead of clouding your judgment by keeping tons of pictures that only remind you of the good times, it's best to get rid of them as soon as you can. This is also an excellent step for your mental health as you heal from your breakup. 

Clear out old message threads

The same reason you'd want to delete all your old pictures with your ex, you should also want to clear out all your old text message threads. Odds are, there are tons of lovey-dovey messages that will have you thinking about the blissful times you shared. Unfortunately, your relationship ended for a reason. When you go through text messages that shed light on some of the sweeter moments, it will distract you from the reality of what you've really been through. 


If your text messages with your ex happen to be full of toxicity, on the other hand, it still isn't the best idea to keep them saved. Difficult conversations you had with your ex that made you feel terrible about yourself aren't worth revisiting at any point. Reading through messages they sent you that were cruel or heartless will put you into a lower vibrational state of mind.

Tell any mutual friends not to update you about the person

It's possible that you and your ex have mutual friends. The mature thing to do is to make sure none of your friends feel like they have to choose between you and your ex moving forward. They should feel relieved knowing that you aren't going to force them to make such a decision. By that same token, you can also ask them to avoid updating you about your ex. 


In other words, mutual friends might know that your ex has started dating someone new. Instead of bringing that information to you, it's vital for them to keep it to themselves. If you're choosing to go no contact with your ex, then staying up-to-date with whatever they've got going on isn't something that makes sense. In fact, their life updates aren't any of your business. Your mutual friends need to respect your boundaries in this department.

Write down a list of their icks

When you're going through a breakup with someone, it's easy to get sucked into a fairytale land where you only remember the good things they brought to your life. In reality, you've chosen to walk away from the relationship for a reason, which you should honor. Whatever your reason, remember that it's valid and should be respected. To remind yourself why the relationship should never be revived, you should write down a list of all your ex's icks


Creating an icks list is a great tool to describe all the things they did that disgusted you, pissed you off, or frustrated you endlessly. Keep track of everything they did that gave you the ick. Perhaps you never witnessed them flossing their teeth before bed, or you hated how they'd get snippy with servers. It doesn't matter how random your icks might sound. It's necessary to write them all down to remind yourself why you shouldn't break your no-contact rule.

Write down a list of your own best qualities

It's equally important to write down a list of your personal best qualities to remind yourself why you're better off without your ex. Remind yourself what a catch you are and how lucky anyone would be to land a chance with you. Your ex might've fumbled the metaphorical bag by blowing it with you, but that doesn't mean you won't eventually meet someone who values you in the way you deserve. 


For these reasons, it's a must to list everything you genuinely love about yourself. Your ambition, ability to bounce back after setbacks, sense of humor, and compassion for others are just a few ideas for getting your list started. The longer your list becomes, the more you'll be reminded that you shouldn't get back into contact with someone who couldn't acknowledge what a wonderful person you are.

Enjoy multiple self-care days

Self-care is nothing to feel guilty about and becomes even more vital than normal if you're going through a breakup with someone in a full-fledged, no-contact manner. Some breakups aren't as dramatic, and maybe you can even see yourself being chill friends with them in the future. Amicable splits don't necessarily need to lead you down the route of a no-contact rule. Other breakups are far more serious, though. 


With some toxic exes, going no contact is the only thing you can do to protect yourself from more ongoing suffering and heartache. Instead of focusing on how difficult it is to refrain from contacting your ex, shift your focus to multiple self-care days filled with enjoyable experiences. Some of the most common forms of self-care to consider include writing in your journal, heading to the spa, getting extra sleep, socializing with friends, listening to good music, and taking personal days off of work.

Sit down with a therapist

Sitting down with a professional therapist is a great thing to do for people trying to honor a no-contact rule while going through the transition of a breakup. A therapist can be so helpful because they will remind you along the way how important it is to remain steadfast and firm in your decision. Therapists are trained individuals who know how to assess different mental health struggles in the people they meet with. 


If you're feeling tempted to respond to an ex you've chosen to go no contact with, your therapist will help you dig into why those temptations are coming on so strong. Is it your fear of ending up alone forever? Is it that you still subconsciously want to prove something to your ex beyond the breakup? Whatever is seeded as the source of your temptation is something a therapist can help you work through and overcome.

Hit the gym

There's no denying that regular physical activity is a game-changer for everyone in terms of physical and mental health. The more you exercise, the more your health will improve. Going through breakups can be incredibly stressful and overwhelming. The good news is that getting some exercise will reduce feelings of depression while enhancing your mood, increasing your energy levels, and improving your sleep. All of these things come into play when you're dealing with an ex you've chosen to go no contact with. 


Instead of basking in your misery, you can opt for different forms of exercise that will heighten the production of endorphins in your brain. Moving your body as often as you can will undoubtedly lead to the release of more endorphins, which are happy hormones. You don't have to punish yourself in the gym on machines like the Stairmaster or uphill-inclined treadmill. You can get moving in Zumba dance classes, Pilate sessions, or water aerobics.

Discover a new hobby

Going no contact with an ex you used to spend a lot of time with is an excellent opportunity for you to discover a new hobby that excites you. Instead of filling your time in communication with someone who isn't supposed to be in your life, you can fill your time with a hobby that's perfect for you. It's up to you to decide which hobbies stand out to you the most. As soon as you narrow down your options, search your local area for events, classes, or recreational get-togethers where you'll be able to explore your interests. 


Some common hobbies to consider include birdwatching, reading, cooking, solving crossword puzzles, and canvas painting. Deciding which hobby makes you the happiest simply comes down to choosing something that improves your life for the better. This means you should probably avoid any hobbies that could lead to self-destructive or detrimental behavior and choose hobbies that are truly constructive.

Fill your schedule with social outings

It's the perfect time to start filling your schedule with social outings. This is especially helpful in distracting your mind when going no contact. While you were wrapped up in your past relationship, you might not have carved tons of time out to hang out with friends. 


When a friend brings an idea up for something to do on a Friday night, your instant response should always be "yes!" as you learn to put yourself out there again. This shows that you're ready to rebuild any connections that might've faded away throughout your past romantic relationship. 

If you don't necessarily have any friendships to fall back on after becoming single, it's up to you to start trying to make new friends in different places by leaning into different opportunities. You can sign up for friend-swiping apps if that interests you. Other solid places to meet good friends include political rallies, church, volunteer groups, fitness classes, and recreational sports teams.

Find a new movie or TV series to watch

It might feel like you've got tons of free time on your hands after going no contact with your ex. There's no shame in filling a bit of that time with a fantastic new movie or TV series. If there's a show that has been piquing your interest for a while, you can start binge-watching each episode without experiencing any guilt. It's your selfish era, after all. Focus on yourself and what makes you happy while you're single! 


It's possible that an extraordinary TV show or spectacular movie franchise will spark endless joy in you. Some popular TV shows with several seasons to start binge-watching include "Game of Thrones," "The Office," "Grey's Anatomy," and "Gossip Girl." Some of the best movie franchises to get hyped about include "Harry Potter," "Star Wars," "Magic Mike," and "The Avengers." Decide if you want to watch entertainment jam-packed with action, romance, comedy, or another thrilling genre. 

Take a trip

Planning a trip is a fabulous thing to do while going no contact with your ex. It's your choice to invite a friend or two to accompany you, but you can always go on your own as a solo traveler. It can sometimes be difficult to get friends on the same page as you about spending a certain amount of money on a certain destination in a particular timeframe. If it's way too difficult to plan a trip with other people involved, don't let that block you from enjoying yourself in a new environment. 


You can plan a solo trip that's incredibly safe if you follow the proper precautions and keep your bases covered. When planning your trip, you need to ask yourself a handful of questions regarding budget and destination. The bottom line, though, is that this trip fuels your desire to remain in no contact.

Write a letter to yourself

It's important to write a letter to yourself about everything you're feeling during this process. This isn't something everyone will feel inclined to do, but if you feel like tons of negative emotions will be released by writing everything down on paper, then this is certainly a step you should take.


Go somewhere that's private and quiet, where no one will be able to interrupt or distract you. Write down everything floating around your head, and make sure it all comes from the heart. Keep in mind that no one else will ever access this letter to judge, blackmail, or throw your own words back into your face.

Once you're finished writing everything down, you can keep your letter tucked away or set it on fire in a safe and controlled manner. You might be surprised at the mental release you'll feel after taking this step. If you choose to hold onto the letter, read it any time you think about contacting your ex, and watch how easy it becomes to refrain from doing so.

Don't think of going no-contact as a way to get a reaction out of the other person

The worst thing you can do is waste precious time thinking that going no contact is a way to get a reaction out of your ex. The purpose of going to contact is for you and you alone. This is a vital step to take in your healing process while trying to move on from someone who isn't right for you. If your desire to go no contact is simply to make your ex feel bad, you're not approaching this with the right mindset. 


This isn't supposed to be an act of aggression. This is supposed to be something you do for yourself to create more peace in your heart and mind. It's true that going no contact may certainly evoke a knee-jerk reaction from your ex, who will possibly try to contact you however possible. Still, this shouldn't be the reason you choose to take this route in the first place.

Understand that your silence speaks louder than any words

Silence speaks louder than any possible words you might think to say to your ex. When you go no contact, you take back all of your power. Anytime you break down and respond to a message they've sent you, you're allowing them to stay in your life a while longer. If they're reaching out to you with messages and phone calls in an attempt to slide back into your life, it's up to you to respect yourself enough not to give in. 


This same rule applies if you have a lot of rage inside you with tons of angry words you want to say. You give your ex a glimpse at how much power they still hold over you if you snap at them and lose your temper. Maintain your composure by staying as calm, cool, and collected as possible. There's more power in restraint, which means your silence will speak louder volumes than any furious utterances you might blurt out.

Define your boundaries for future relationships

You've decided to go no contact with your ex, and you probably don't want to be in this situation again with another partner. That being said, now is the time to define your boundaries for future relationships. What is the reason for your decision to go no contact with your ex? Is it because they didn't respect you enough to remain faithful? Is it because they would talk down to you in condescending and sarcastic tones? 


Think about your reason for going no contact with your ex and define your boundaries for relationships to come in the future. Make sure you'll never be in a position to have to go no contact with another person you romantically involve yourself with down the line. Whoever you date in the future will have to respect your boundaries from the beginning.

Decide on your non-negotiables for future relationships

The same way you need to define your boundaries for future relationships, you also have to decide on your non-negotiables. If you've gone no contact with an ex, chances are they did a few things that you didn't appreciate in the relationship. These are things that you won't be willing to negotiate about in the future. Jotting down these non-negotiables while they are fresh in your mind during your no-contact stage may prevent you from making the same mistakes in the future with similar partners.


When moving forward with someone new, the issues from your past relationship should be absolute non-negotiables moving forward. When you solidify your non-negotiables, you stop making excuses for bad behavior. As soon as you stop making excuses for others, you start thoroughly showing yourself the love and respect you deserve.

Understand that the healing process takes time

As much as you might wish you could be over the pain of everything in one day, it's essential to understand that the healing process takes time. No one is able to move on past a breakup in 24 hours or less, no matter how much they wish they could. The good news about going no contact with your ex helps the healing process speed along a little faster. 


The more time you waste keeping lines of communication open with your ex, the longer your breakup will last. And when you continue staying in contact with your past love, you drag out the breakup longer than needed. Going no contact is an ideal way of making a clean break. There's no reason to fall back into old patterns with an ex who isn't good for you after the lines of communication have been completely cut off.

Never cave to the pressure if they're continually reaching out

You'll have to refrain from caving into the pressure from your ex if they're continually trying to reach out. It's your job to stay strong and avoid giving in to any temptations when you see messages from them pop up on your phone. Reasons you might feel tempted to cave into the pressure include loneliness, boredom, and curiosity. None of those reasons are worth your happiness and peace of mind, though.


You might feel lonely for a moment, but if you stick with your no-contact rule, you'll open the door for the right person to come along at the right time. Since they probably brought a lot of misery and pain into your life, you can expect more of that to come when you allow them to keep coming back.

Understand that you may never get the closure you want

The harsh reality is that you might never get the closure you're hoping for when you go no contact with an ex. Getting closure is beautiful, but it's not necessarily something to hold your breath for. Instead of holding out hope that the two of you can walk away amicably, it's better to let go of any expectations.


If you have to go to the extreme measure of going no contact with someone, it typically means they have narcissistic, selfish, or toxic qualities that you simply can't be around any longer. Or, perhaps you don't trust yourself fully to refrain from replying to their messages post-breakup, so your only option is to cut that line of communication completely. Regardless, please know that it's okay to let them go without closure so you can move on with your life.