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Five Ways to Move on When You Still Love Your Ex

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I love writing about relatable, insightful articles that helps people understand relationship dynamics and how to get the love they want.


It’s not an easy task to move on when you still love your ex but it is possible. While time is the best healer, it is not a passive process, it is an active one. You need to put in some work before you can really move on. This means, there are certain steps that you can take to move on from your ex that you are still in love with. At first, it might seem like a hard journey especially if you didn’t want things to end and you still have very strong feelings for your ex. It can be a real struggle to move on but with time you will look back and see the progress you have made.

If you find yourself thinking, ‘oh my God! I'm still in love with my ex,’ you might be wondering how long it will take to finally get over him or her. If you just broke up, it makes sense that you're missing your ex at first, but if it's been a while, you could be getting impatient with yourself for still having these feelings. By taking one day at a time, you would definitely get to that point where you can finally move on with your life. All you have to do is take things slowly, one day at a time.

These are five ways to move on when you still love your ex.


1. Know That it is Okay to Still Love Them

As much as it can be hard for you to accept this, it is absolutely okay for you to love them. In fact if you don’t, it shows that you never really loved them when you were in the relationship. This means that, depending on how long you were in a relationship, the reason for the breakup and whether it was your choice or theirs, you may find that you still have lingering feelings and love for that person. Therefore, it is important for you to know that it is okay to still love them, you are not crazy or dumb if you still nurse some feelings for them. What matters is how you pull yourself through and get your life back to shape.

When you find yourself thinking of your ex from time to time, don’t beat yourself up over it, mainly because it is a normal response to a breakup, especially if you've shared a deep connection with that person. Hence, bear in mind that it is normal to still love your ex and remember the good times you shared with them. After all, this person was once very important to you at a point in your life. So, your feelings don’t need to disappear, and they probably can’t. Your feelings just need to transform into something else. Just like friends that we have grown apart, ex-boyfriends/girlfriends can just be people we used to love, or still love, but in a different way.

In this vein, love is one of the greatest gifts we have been blessed with as humans, therefore it is okay to have love in your heart for someone you are no longer in a relationship with, all you can do is to try not to let it consume you.

2. Accept What Has Happened

A lot of people most times are still in love with their ex mainly because they have refused to accept that the relationship is over and that their ex is never coming back. However, there is a need for you to grow and accept the reality that you are not meant to be and cannot be with all the people you love in life. This is a very important step in getting over a relationship and moving on from an ex love.

We all know that letting go of someone that you still love is hard but the truth of the matter is, you cannot receive something new when you are still holding on to the past. At this point, you need to get to the level of understanding that, there is nothing you can do to restore your relationship. You have to accept the reality that it is all over. Not accepting what has happened and denying this fact would not help you at all. That is why you need to condition your mind that your ex is not coming back. Sometimes, this process can be difficult. It can be blunt. Ultimately, you might need to accept that it takes two people to be in a relationship and you might just be the only one still sulking about them coming back. Don’t allow yourself to be the pity party.

On the other side of the spectrum, as you find yourself accepting what has happened, you need to let go of the memories and all the things that reminds you of them. Avoid songs, places, things, and stuff that reminds you of them, at least for the time being. You need to courageously let go of the things that connects you with them, so that you can have a breathing space to think about something else in order to move forward with your life. At this point, you want to stop reminiscing about your good times together because you thinking about it can make the acceptance process a little bit hard for you.


3. Activate the No Contact Rule

Activating the no contact rule simply means that you cut off all contact with them. This step might sting and seem harsh since you are still in love with your ex but bear in mind that this is for you and your sanity. Now, once you activate this rule, you must follow it. If you feel like you can’t do it on your own, you can have an accountability partner that would always keep you in check whenever you violate the rule. So, no matter how badly you want to hear their voice, see their face or even wish them happy birthday, you do not make any contact. No contact means no contact.

The reason why you need to activate and follow this rule is because any contact with them would only hinder you from the moving on process. At this stage, don’t try to act all cool and nice by staying as friends. You can be friends after you might have gotten your act together but not when your heart still skips a beat anytime they are around you. If they contact you, nicely tell them that you need some time alone and to please not interfere with that. For your own peace of mind, ignore any future attempts made by them to contact you. If you must remain in contact because of children or other shared obligations, know that there is a distinct difference between being friendly and being friends.

While the no contact rule is in place, if you feel the need to cut off social media ties with them so as to help you with the process of moving on, by all means! Do what is best for you in order to move on with your life. At this point, you should know that the no contact rule is crucial in your recovery efforts. By removing the temptation to contact them, you are protecting both yourself and your dignity. So, whatever you do, be intentional about staying away from your ex. The more contact you have with your ex, the more difficult it would be to move on from your ex.

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4. Divert your energy to other important areas of your life

Once you have successfully activated the no contact rule, there is a need to divert your energy into something else. That way, you don’t spend your time obsessing over your ex. Hence, it is vital that you divert your energy and focus in to some other important areas of your life. Other areas such as career and personal development. Find a new passion: you can discover your talents and interests. Use this opportunity to find what you are good at.

You can also focus on other people that you love and those that are important to you, since your ex is not the only person you love. Remember that, you still have your family and friends. You can as well direct your effort and care to these people. They are the ones who stay with you no matter what, so they deserve to be treated special. Spend time with them, especially your family. In addition to that, you as well deserve self-love, so pamper yourself and treat yourself to a good time. Eat healthy, get enough sleep and avoid stress. Focus on loving yourself. Do things that makes you happy, inspired and alive.


5. Give it Time

While you just want to get over all the love and passion you have for your ex as soon as possible, it is pertinent to note that it does not always happen that way. You have to be patient with yourself and not rush the process of moving on. We all know how hard it is to still be in love with someone who doesn’t want to be with you. It is painful and you just can’t wait to get rid of the love you have for them since you feel like you can’t cope with it. However, if you rush through the process you might end up hating the person which is a negative feeling that you do not want to feel. Hence be patient with the process, understand that when you truly love someone and have become attached to them, figuring out how to move forward in your life without them is not necessarily a simple prospect but it is possible.

Finally, it is essential that you seek therapy if things get too heavy for you to carry alone. You can always seek out for a licensed professional who is well equipped to help you with the process of moving on when you still love your ex.

© 2020 Marissa


Marissa (author) from Nigeria on October 13, 2020:

Yes, you are absolutely correct. Love is a messy emotion that only time can sort out. Thank you for reading and leaving a comment.

Anuoluwa Olufowose on August 22, 2020:

It can be really difficult to move on, because love is a powerful emotion, but I think #5 does the trick... Time heals all wounds.

Thank you Marissa

Marissa (author) from Nigeria on August 22, 2020:

You are absolutely correct dashingscorpio. My favorite part was where you said 'In order for your (ex) to have been "the one" he/she would have had to see (you) as being "the one". At the very least a "soulmate" is someone who actually wants to be with you! (And vice versa)' I love this part in particular because it's the absolute truth and I feel like a lot of people need to know this.

Thank you for reading and leaving a piece of advice behind. I appreciate your comments as always.

dashingscorpio from Chicago on August 22, 2020:

Another excellent article!

I personally believe #2 and #3 are extremely important if one truly (wants) to move on. You can't get to "second base" if you insist upon keeping one foot on first base. You have to let go.

It's also important to {keep things in perspective} and not "romanticize" the past by wearing "rose tinted glasses" and having selective memories. People choose to remember the good times.

In order for your (ex) to have been "the one" he/she would have had to see (you) as being "the one". At the very least a "soulmate" is someone who actually wants to be with you! (And vice versa)

"Never love anyone who treats you like you're ordinary."

- Oscar Wilde

Kin-Kin on August 21, 2020:

Thanks for this insight Marissa. I believe When there is life there is hope. Which birth the power of Positive word usage...

Marissa (author) from Nigeria on August 21, 2020:

Thank you Kin-kin and Victor. Please don't break up with your girlfriend Victor.

Obaro Emmanuel Victor from Nigeria on August 21, 2020:

I feel like i should break up with my girlfriend right now, so i can apply this principles and see how it'll work... Lol!

Well done Marissa

Marissa (author) from Nigeria on August 21, 2020:

Thank you Tayo and Topps for your kind words and thank you for reading.

Topps Kezia on August 21, 2020:

These are practical steps that can be actualized in moving on from an ex. Thanks Marissa for the In-depth expository.

Tayo on August 21, 2020:

Nice one here,

Its better to divert your energy to other important areas of your life. Its very important,instead of breaking down.. Though its not eas.

Marissa (author) from Nigeria on August 21, 2020:

Thank you Daniel for your kind words and thank you for reading.

Daniel Idowu from Lagos, Nigeria. on August 21, 2020:

Some helpful advice for the hurting.

Well done Marissa

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