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How Long Does It Take to Get Over Someone? A Timeline for Peace

How long does it take to get over someone? A month, a year, two years? There are a lot of factors that determine this, but you’ll get there.

how long does it take to get over someone

There was no magic timeline for how long it takes to get over someone. You won’t wake up one day and feel better. So, how long does it take to get over someone? I can’t answer that. At least not the way you want me to.

A loss is just that. Whether it is a breakup or death, that stays with you. What happens, though, is you get through it. You go from being distraught to living with it, and one day you will realize that it didn’t cross your mind.

Depending on the relationship, the amount of time you spent with someone, and the commitment you made, the timing will always vary. But you can move forward. Sure there might be a scar, and it might last a while, but you will be stronger once you do get over them. [Read: 20 ways to get over someone without falling apart]

Timeline for getting over someone

There is no science or math for getting over someone. You can’t add up the amount of time you were together, multiply it by the pain, and divide by your goals to get a number. It just doesn’t work like that.

But, what is possible, is following a timeline. There will always be ups and downs and good days and bad, but there are some stages of a breakup that everyone goes through. Working through those and staying on track can help you get over someone faster and with a bit less pain. [Read: The harsh truth about getting over someone]

1. Shock

Whether the breakup was mutual or not, there is always a stage of shock. You walk away from them and are not used to this new fact. Your mind and body, and emotions haven’t come to terms with what just happened. This can last one day to one week normally. You need to process what happened.

2. Sadness

Mourning the loss of a relationship is important. If someone tells you not to cry, they are wrong. You were in a relationship. It is over. You lost something that became a big part of your life, and it is okay to cry. Take some mental health days. Stay in bed. Pig out on ice cream.

Just try not to let this go on longer than a week, or you will wallow. You want to let out your sadness but not let it overwhelm you. [Read: How to survive the beginning of a breakup]

3. Denial

Even after mourning, you may try to get them back. You might tell yourself this is temporary or just a break. Maybe you reach out to them and ant to try again with the guise of wanting closure. This won’t work. This period can last from weeks to months, especially if you keep talking to your ex.

4. Obsession

Whether you are talking to your ex or not, there comes a time when you are obsessed. Even if you don’t want them back, you stalk their social media and ask around about them. You complain and vent to your friends nonstop. If this phase goes on for too long, you will struggle.

Continuing to keep your ex in your mind will let them have power over you. Talking about them, keep them in your headspace will overwhelm you. Vent and let it out, but don’t obsess. If you find yourself repeating what you’ve said or driving yourself crazy trying to analyze their posts, you may want to unfriend or block them for your own peace of mind. [Read: Are you obsessing over your ex?]

5. Staying busy

Staying busy is an important step in getting over someone. You go back to work and make plans with friends. You may even go on some dates casually. That is all fine and well. Keeping your thoughts occupied with productive and positive things is a great way to put space between you and the person you are trying to get over.

6. Acceptance

How long does it take to get over someone? This is the first true stage of getting over them. Accepting that it ended and you’re not getting back together is the beginning of the end, in a way. Coming to terms with the facts and knowing you miss them but this is for the best is the point where you are closer to being over them than not.

7. Clarity

You’ve gained clarity. Whether it was from them or not, you have a reason for why things ended. You know that things weren’t good. You’ve been able to analyze your own feelings and the last few weeks or months. You are okay with the fact that things are over and understand it as well as you will. [Read: How to come back stronger after a breakup]

8. Fall back

There is always a point in the breakup timeline where you fall back. Maybe you have a rough night, maybe a friend got engaged, and you’re lonely, maybe you’ve been drinking. You want to call them or text them, and maybe you do. This is normal. You slide back into old ways because part of you misses them or reminisces about the old days.

9. Peace

If you can come back from a slip-up, you will find peace. You realize calling or texting or even seeing them was a bad idea, and it isn’t offering you anything. Keeping this person in your mind is only slowing down your moving on process. You feel good about where you are.

10. Moving ahead

You are looking ahead. You can see the light at the end of the tunnel instead of living in the state of the breakup. Instead of getting through the breakup or getting over someone, you are there. You are ready for the next step. This can take months or years, and that’s okay as long as it feels right to you. [Read: Move on from a break up with a smile]

How long does it take to get over someone?

The hardest part of moving on from a relationship is the roller coaster you go through. One day you can be strong and stand on your own two feet. Then the next, you are a puddle on the floor rehashing all the same trauma you thought you were over.

The good news, over time, the roller coaster comes to an end, and you can get off the ride. So, unfortunately, as much as I would love to tell you after six weeks, you will not even consider your ex, I wouldn’t be doing you any favors.

It isn’t that it won’t happen. It’s just that no one determines that but you. Instead of focusing on a concrete amount of time, focus on those things you can do to help get over someone.

How to get over someone

Even though there is no specific date or time that you will get over someone, there are some things you can do to make it easier and maybe even faster.

1. Stop fantasizing

When something ends, and we didn’t want it to, the loss is usually experienced greater than if we end it ourselves. We focus only on those things excellent about the relationship and negate all those things that were not.

You might daydream about the good times. You will miss all the great things. But the sadness of that is making you disregard all the bad stuff. Did you fight a lot? Were they controlling? Did they ignore you? Were they respectful? Were you actually happy or convincing yourself you were?

Seeing the relationship for what it really was will help you come to terms. [Read: Letting go of your ex: 15 ways to make it easier]

2. Stop talking about it

If you didn’t get the closure you expected, it is not unusual to repeatedly rehash things. No matter what conclusion you come to, it is over. Talking it through continually does nothing but keep you stuck.

Sure, you want to vent and explain what happened to your close friends, but if you find yourself repeating things, you are jumping into obsession terroritiy. This will only slow you down in terms of moving on.

Letting your ex consume your conversations with others only makes things worse. This won’t actually give you clarity. [Read: Unpopular opinion – Why you shouldn’t seek closure after a breakup]

3. Erase their contact

Don’t keep their messages sitting around or risk seeing their contact pop up all the time. When a relationship ends, the best way to move on is to erase the potential you will fall into the trap of contacting them when drunk or really sad.

If you erase their contact info, you won’t be tempted to reach out and get them back. Remove them from the place you are always looking, your phone. This can seem intense, but you know what you might do. Remove that risk. [Read: 12 reasons why the no contact rule always works]

4. Put away memories for the time being

If you were together for a significant amount of time, you might have a trail of memories sitting around your house or apartment. Seeing memorabilia every day is doing nothing but bringing up memories and keeping you stuck.

You don’t have to burn the pictures, rip them up, or even throw them out. Put them in a box somewhere or ask a friend to hold onto them. Seeing a picture of them every day will only resurface your sad feelings. You can’t erase them from your life, but it isn’t healthy to continually upset yourself by seeing your ex everywhere you go. [Read: 8 post-breakup questions you should be thinking about]

5. Take a trip

Immersing yourself in other things is a great way to help you get over someone. Idle time is your worst enemy. If you have saved up some vacation days, take the time to do something you love.

Go on a road trip with friends, or do something alone that you’ve always wanted to do. Enjoying your alone time is exactly what you need to stop being lonely and just be alone.

6. Throw yourself into a goal

Nothing distracts you from a broken heart more than having a goal and working toward it. Being productive is a positive feeling and can override any negative ones.

If you want to further your career, or run a marathon, consume yourself by keeping your eyes on the prize. It is a much better way to blow off steam than drinking someone away. In the end, it helps you feel much more accomplished and will boost your self-esteem. [Read: 15 ways to be someone who always says: I love my life!]

7. Reconnect with old friends

When in a relationship, you might have lost touch with friends. Maybe you didn’t see them too often because you were emersed in your relationship. Reach out to those friends. Let them know you missed them and let your relationship take over.

There are always those friends who you can pick up with after not talking to for years as if no time passed at all.

8. Stay off the social media sites

The worst thing to do is to follow what your ex is doing on social media sites. Don’t be a creeper and stalk them via the internet. It is best to unfriend them or at least hide their posts.

Seeing what they are up to does nothing but make you feel isolated and alone. Live out your real life. Don’t feel like you need to keep up with them online or beat them who looks best in their profile picture. [Read: How to get yourself off of social media]

9. Don’t try to get information about them

Please don’t talk about them or inadvertently get information about them when you are with mutual friends. Likely, your friends don’t want to get in the middle of it and won’t bring them up if you don’t.

You don’t need to know what they are up to or if they have moved on. That information won’t do anything but drive you crazy. Finding out that they are in another relationship will not make you feel anything but more sadness, and like you are missing something.

10. Avoid your old hangouts

If you think going to the same old hangouts is a good idea or want to bump accidentally into them, that isn’t a good idea. Seeing them is only going to set back any progress you made. You can’t live in the past. It is behind you.

Find a new hangout. Let your ex have the old one. I hope you meet new people and enjoy new experiences instead of reliving the past when you are out. [Read: 8 most common post-breakup mistakes most people do]

11. Go out on a ton of dates

Don’t jump into another relationship before you are over your previous one. That does not mean, however, that you can’t date around. The more people you go out with, the better. You may discover dating is far more fun than you remember. And also far more fun than being in your committed relationship was.

12. Work on yourself

Instead of wallowing in what is lost, focus on yourself. The best way to get over someone is to do something to make yourself feel good. Work out, try meditation, practice saying “no,” or do something for yourself that makes you a better person and feel better about yourself. [Read: 16 ways to improve yourself]

13. Exercise

Try to get out of your head. Remove some of that negative energy by pouring it into something good for you, like exercise. Go to the gym, go dancing, or even do yoga. Go for walks, get some fresh air. The best way to fight the blues is to exercise.

This is scientifically proven to increase your mood whether you want to meet someone at the gym or just let some negative vibes out on the pavement.

14. Learn to be alone

Being alone may feel like your new enemy. But thinking of it like that makes you feel like you need to be attached to someone to feel okay. Learn how to be alone and love it. Watch something no one in your life likes. Read a book, take a bath, or just meditate.

You don’t always need to be around someone to feel fulfilled. Practice being alone without feeling lonely. [Read: Is going anti-love the perfect answer to heartbreak?]

15. Be respectful

It is hard to do, but go out with class. When you talk badly about someone, it only prolongs your own agony. There is no sense in carrying on about what they did to you or what a jerk they were.

In the end, it only makes you look vengeful and weak. If anyone asks you what happened, say “it didn’t work” and leave it at that. That way, they won’t ask again, and you won’t find yourself talking about it over and again.

16. Make a list of the things you won’t miss

Surely there are a ton of things you won’t miss. Make a list of the mean things they said, how they left their socks in the middle of the room, and how bad their morning breath was. There are many things you didn’t “love” about them. Make a list to have in writing for when you start to miss them.

This will remind you that things weren’t always as great as your mind might try to convince you.

17. Do all those things they wouldn’t do with you

If you gave up watching “The Bachelor” or stopped going shopping at the mall, engage in those things. Go to that spa your ex never wanted to try. Rejoin guys’ night; there is no one to stop you or make you feel bad about doing the things you love to do. Find the time to partake in all those things that you used to love, but you gave up for them. [Read: Letting go of someone you love – Minus the bitterness]

18. Don’t contact their family

If you and their mom were friends, you have other friends. It is not healthy to continue to date your ex’s family once you have broken up. If you are convincing yourself, it is a good thing, and it isn’t. You are not only inserting yourself back into a situation that keeps you stuck; you interfere with your ex’s family relationships, which is not fair either. [Read: 10 stages of a breakup and how to get through each of them]

19. Go out

The last thing people want to do when they get over a relationship starts a new one. That doesn’t mean you can’t meet new people. You want to stay open but not jump right into something. Have fun. Go out in groups. Keep your spirits up. Use this time to remidn yourself how much there is outside of your ex. Sometimes having new prospects and even new connections makes you feel less alone.

20. Listen to the advice of those around you.

It is not uncommon for people to come out of the woodwork and come clean about how they felt about your ex. Now is the time to listen to them. If they say they were no good for you or that they weren’t good enough for you, go with it.

Your friends are there for honesty, so take it and be rational about what you really lost and what you thought you did.

Losing someone is one of the hardest things we experience in life, no matter the reason. There is no magic time limit where you wake up one day feeling like the loss is over, and they are erased from your heart.

[Read: How to get over someone when your heart does not want to]

So how long does it take to get over someone? Well, really, there is no magic time, and it’s all up to you and how you can handle your own emotions.

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