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No Contact Rule: What It Is, How to Use It & Why It Works So Well

You just broke up with your ex, and you are pretty upset about it. So, what’s the best strategy to use? You should try the no contact rule and follow it.

No Contact Rule

Friendship can turn into love. But can love ever turn into friendship? Someone once said it can. And it’s true. But all you need to do is avoid that ex-lover of yours for a few years! For now, you should use the no contact rule.

A break up always leaves us in a confused state of mind. On one hand, we’re hurting because we’ve lost a big piece of our heart to someone else. And on the other hand, we still want to stay in touch with the same person that broke our heart and walked all over it!

No wonder it’s been said that love is sweet misery. We want something so bad even though we know all it’ll do is hurt us more.

Honestly, it’s understandable that you want to stay in touch with your ex. They’re a big part of your life. But sometimes, avoiding all contact with an ex is possibly the best thing to do, even if staying in touch feels like a wonderful consolation prize to win after a breakup.

[Read: Does my ex still miss me? 23 signs your ex is clearly not over you yet]

What is the no contact rule?

Very simply, the no contact rule is a rule where exes stay as exes and don’t become friends.

They don’t try to stay friends, they don’t wish each other ‘happy birthday,’ and they definitely don’t stay connected on social media and ‘like’ each other’s posts!

Both exes who were once completely in love with each other now avoid each other purposefully and greet each other with awkward smiles like distant acquaintances when they invariably bump into each other.

It sounds harsh, but well, that’s what the no contact rule is all about.

Why is the no contact rule a wise choice?

There are two kinds of endings to every relationship, a happy ending and a sad one.

If both of you decide to part ways because you’re both bored and there’s no real love in the romance anymore, it’s a happy ending *wow, the irony of it all!*.

If you’re still in love with your lover, and yet, your lover arm twists you into a breakup because they don’t care about you anymore or are dating someone else, then that’s a sad ending for you and probably a happy ending for your soon-to-be-ex.

If your breakup ends with a happy ending for you, then the no contact rule will be meaningless to you, because you’re probably in another relationship or enjoying the single life anyway. [Read: 16 signs your ex still loves you and wants you back]

But if you’re the one left nursing a broken heart in your lonely room while your current ex flits and jumps from one happy hookup to another, then the no contact rule definitely applies to you. You need this much more than your happy ex does!

Why some people need the no contact rule more than others

Know this, the person who cares enough to desperately try and stay friends with their ex wants to stay friends only because they’re still in love with their ex.

There are almost no other reasons for two exes to stay friends *unless they still have something in common that binds them – friends, work, family, etc.*

If you’re having a hard time moving on from the breakup, you need to realize that the only reason you’re still hurt and miserable is because you want your ex back in your arms. Even if you don’t want to date your ex again, the fact that you’re hurting means you feel empty in your heart and want more love in your life.

The more you’re in touch with your ex, the more you’d realize just how empty your heart is with no love in it. [Read: I miss my ex – Why you honestly miss them and 20 ways to get over them for good]

How to follow the no contact rule

The best way to disconnect emotionally and heal the hole in your heart is by avoiding your ex completely. It’ll help you move on without having to constantly remember just how lonely you are each time you see your ex flirting with someone else.

Resist the temptation to stay in touch or call your ex just to say hello. Don’t spend your idle hours searching online frantically for any new pictures or any news of their new relationship status.

And for crying out loud, avoid looking for ways to bump into them just so you can shake hands or exchange a warm-but-awkward hug. [Read: Bumped into your ex? 14 super-cool ways to show them YDGAF anymore!]

If you’re hurting inside after the breakup, you really need to follow the no contact rule and avoid your current ex completely. It’s the only way you can ever bring that natural smile back on your face again.

12 very valid reasons why the no contact rule is the best choice

Are you still uncertain about the fact that the no contact rule is the best way to overcome your ex? Here are 12 good reasons why the no contact rule has to be your best friend for now.

1. You can’t move on without it

You can’t move on if you’re stuck in the same spot in your love life.

As long as you stay around your ex, you’ll constantly remember how much you miss your relationship. Only when you take an emotional step away will you be able to look around and find new things to fill that emptiness you feel in your heart.

2. Your feelings will always be rekindled

If you’ve been dumped by someone you still love or even if you’ve parted ways mutually, the relationship status changes overnight, but your feelings for your ex won’t be able to keep pace with it.

If you meet your ex often, there’s a big chance that you’ll end up falling in love with them, even if they’ve moved on.

You can’t kiss them or touch them anymore, and that makes that all the more irresistible and desirable. Why would you want to put yourself through all that torture when you can just follow the no contact rule instead? [Read: How to make someone miss you and regret ever leaving your side]

3. Focus on the healing

It’s easier to focus on the healing when you don’t have to keep staring at that annoyingly perfect face of your ex.

Memories have a sneaky way of cropping up each time you see your ex. And the more you see your ex, the harder it’ll be to stop loving them.

4. You’d be more forgiving

Your ex may be a selfish, narcisistsic animal who only has their own interests in mind. If your ex cheated on you or dumped you to date someone else, and all of a sudden, they decide to come back to you, you can’t stop yourself from accepting their apology when you’re always in touch with them.

After a breakup, all your heart wants is someone to fill the emptiness in it. Don’t be around your selfish ex or you’ll end up hurting yourself again some other day. [Read: Your ex wants to be friends? 15 questions you have to ask yourself right now]

5. You can’t fall in love with someone else

When you disregard the no contact rule and stay in touch with your ex, you’d feel like it’s morally wrong to date someone else.

And even when you’re trying to find someone or something else to distract you, the thought of your breakup will always linger in your mind, making you feel uneasy and miserable all the time. [Read: How to use a rebound relationship to get over a breakup]

6. Your life is cluttered with broken memories

You need new memories and experiences that don’t involve your ex if you ever want to get back up on your feet and sense a sliver of happiness again. The more you see your ex, the more you’ll remember the old times.

7. The dreaded on-off relationship

When two exes ignore the no contact rule and stay in touch, almost all the time, they end up getting back together because they’re both lonely and need a relationship to feel complete.

Even before you realize it, both of you may end up getting back together in the heat of a private moment when no one’s around.

And if a relationship isn’t really meant to be because of so many different expectations, you may end up experiencing an on-off relationship which will hurt you a lot more, and leave you feeling worse than ever before. [Read: On-off relationships and all the reasons why you should never stay stuck in one]

8. You can’t be yourself around you ex again… ever

Let’s face it, a breakup changes everything about the relationship. You can’t just wrap your ex in your arms or kiss them goodbye when you feel like it.

There will always be an awkwardness in the air unless both of you are completely over each other. Can you really handle the awkwardness all the time? Is staying friends with your ex worth more than your peace of mind?

9. An ex’s touch leaves you more vulnerable than ever

When you’re in a relationship with someone, there’s bound to be a lot of sexual chemistry in the relationship. But after you break up with them, there’s a complete restriction on the things you used to do with them, sexually or romantically.

And when any activity becomes a taboo or a restriction, it ends up becoming an addiction because you want it more badly than ever before!

If you’re still in love with your ex, every single touch or a goodbye hug could end up electrifying the air with sexual tension. And you’d feel more pained each time you touch each other. [Read: Do you want to have sex with your ex again?]

10. You’d get hurt if you stay in touch

This is especially true if your ex has already moved on. Each time you try to get warm with them or try to remind them about those special times both of you shared, your ex may just call you nasty names or walk away with an annoyed expression on their face.

And there you’d be, standing all alone with a broken heart that’s filled with helpless humiliation.

11. Sad frustrations

Even watching your ex flirt with someone, or staring at a few happy pictures of your ex on Instagram hugging someone else can annoy you.

And the worst part, not a single person in the world would truly understand what you feel at that moment. You’re all alone and miserable, all because you decided to stay in touch and avoid the no contact rule. [Read: How to let go of someone you love by hating them]

12. You’re missing a piece of your heart

A piece of your heart is missing because you’ve given it away to your ex. And let’s face it, after the breakup, you can never get it back.

You need your space to either let your heart heal or have it filled with love from another person.

Staying connected will always remind you of that gaping hole inside you, and it’ll never heal as long as you’re constantly around the person who took it away from you in the first place. [Read: Does my ex miss me? 23 signs your ex is not over you yet]

How to get through the no contact phase and follow the rules

If you have broken up with your ex, but you didn’t want to, then the no contact rule is even more important. We’ve discussed those reasons already.

But that doesn’t mean it’s easy. You might be wondering what you should be doing or focusing on during this time. Here are some ideas that will make you feel better.

1. Go out with your friends

You don’t want to sit at home and devour a gallon of ice cream or a bottle of wine crying your eyes out every night. Sure, you could do that, but that is not productive. It will just make you feel worse.

So, get yourself out of the house and go do something fun with your friends as often as you possibly can. Sulking by yourself will just get you thinking more and more about your ex.

Go to a club and meet new people. Dance away your sadness with good music and better friends. See some movies, or take up some new hobbies.

The point is that you need to keep yourself busy so you don’t pine away for your ex too much. Distractions work wonders during the no contact rule time period. [Read: Will my ex come back? 26 reasons and signs they regret leaving you]

2. Get on a dating app

Get back out there in the dating pool. How else are you going to move on from your ex? You don’t need to find another relationship right away, because that poor person you date next would just be the rebound. And that’s not fair to them.

But you can still date casually. Meet up with new people for lunch, coffee, or a cocktail. Meeting new people that you could possibly see yourself dating will do wonders for your ego. It will make you realize that you really are still desirable because other people want you. [Read: Rebound relationship – 15 signs, rules and how to have fun in one]

3. Work on your self-esteem

When we go through a breakup, it takes a toll on most people’s self-esteem – especially if your ex broke up with you. The thoughts of not being good enough or “what did I do wrong?” will pop up a lot for you.

But don’t let those negative thoughts get the best of you. There is absolutely nothing wrong with you. It’s just that your ex is not the right person for you. Don’t take it personally, and allow the no contact rule to help you understand this with time.

Instead, write down all the good qualities you have. It can be that you’re smart, funny, a good friend, or anything that you like about yourself. Then, only allow yourself to think about those things. Don’t allow your ex so much power that it takes down your self-esteem. [Read: Dating someone with low self esteem – What it’s like for the both of you]

4. Look back and learn

So, you should look back at your relationship and do a post-breakup analysis. What did you like about it? Are there things you didn’t like about it? Did you do something wrong? Did your ex do something wrong?

You could see it as a “failed” relationship, but don’t look at it that way. Failure is such a negative word. Instead, you should see this as a learning experience.

After you have looked back at the pros and cons, then take what you learned and do it better in the next relationship. Choose a more compatible partner, and be a better one yourself. Use this time to reflect and do some self-improvement. Get clear on the type of person you really should be dating. [Read: 16 lessons to recover from a breakup one day at a time and move ahead]

5. See a counselor if needed

Sometimes, a breakup is so deeply painful that it is difficult for a person to get through it by themselves. And maybe the help of their family and friends isn’t even enough.

If you find yourself in this situation, then you should probably try to seek professional help if you have the means to do so. The pain of a breakup isn’t supposed to last forever. Eventually, almost everyone heals from it. [Read: How to come out of a relationship stronger than ever when it ends]

So, don’t feel weak if you need a real counselor to help you through it. It’s not weak to admit you need help. In fact, it’s a sign of strength.

Trust the no contact rule

You love your ex, and you can’t ever imagine not talking to them or seeing them every day. Your heart hurts, and you feel lost without them in your arms. But you know what, unfortunately for you, you really have no choice here.

You can’t heal your heart unless you walk away and follow the no contact rule to the tee. It’s a miserable and pathetic feeling, but your shattered heart will heal sooner than you think.

All you need to do is give your heart a safe chance to heal itself by avoiding the person who breaks your heart every time they walk into your life.

Take a step back, and as much as it hurts, stick to the no contact rule. It may hurt *A LOT!* to ignore someone you love, but you’ll start to feel better in weeks. Until then, just hold on!

[Read: How to love again after being hurt by someone]

The no contact rule is very hard to follow. But for your own happiness, you need to learn to deal with your addiction. It won’t be easy to avoid someone you love so much, but a few months down the lane of lost love and you’ll realize that this was the best decision, after all.

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Vinod Srinivas Serai
Vin Serai
Vin Serai is the founder of LovePanky.com, and has delved deep into the working of love and relationships for almost two decades. Having dipped his feet in almo...