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How To Get Over Your Ex (When You Still Obsess Over Them)

Betrayal. Anger. Heartbreak. These emotions are normal in the wake of a breakup. But often, especially if we feel we’ve been mistreated by the person we broke up with, anger lingers long after it’s productive. 

In today’s video, I share the best ways to move on from a gut-wrenching breakup . . . and my answers may surprise you! (Plus be sure to stay until the end if you’d like to go deeper with me on this topic.)

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. . . And that part of you that is mad and upset and disappointed and frustrated, feels so overlooked by that response to it. It feels so invalidated by that response to it. “So he just gets to go off and be f**king fine and I’m supposed to just go, ‘OK, wish him the best. Keep going, keep moving forward.'”

This clip is taken from my Love Life Club, a private session I did for my members where one of my members on this session asked me a question about how to move on from a particularly painful breakup, and she was wondering, “How do I get over the anger that I feel towards this person for the way that I’ve been mistreated in this relationship?” Anger can be an incredibly corrosive thing and we can hold onto it for a long time and people come along and they give us this atheistic advice like, “You just have to keep going. Living well is the best revenge .” And some part of us feels like we’re not acknowledging what this person has done. They’re really just going to go off and get away with the way they treated me, with everything they did with the betrayals, and I just have to live well as the best revenge. That’s fairness?

Have you felt angry like this? Is there some part of you that feels like there is this terrible inequity in the way that you have had to part ways with someone in a relationship and it’s just not fair what happened to you? If you’re struggling to move on from this watch, this clip, I think you’re really going to enjoy it. This clip would normally be reserved only for my members. It’s a small piece of a much longer session, but I know it’s going to help you today if you resonate with this and stay till the end because I have something to tell you about.

Julia says, “How to forgive and let go after a painful breakup? After a rather ugly end to a 15-year relationship with two great kids I’m wondering how to let go of resentment and anger. Ultimately, I know I have to forgive to let go of those wishes of revenge and the ugly thoughts that come with the fact of being hurt, but in this stage, only to hear that the best thing would be to wish him well just provokes a knot in my belly. How to make small practical steps towards letting this go? How to stop confusing between forgiving, accepting what they did and being OK with what they did?” Thank you so much for this question, Julia. Look, I don’t think that it’s fair for anyone to suggest to you, especially it sounds like this person has really hurt you and done some things that have given you reason to be angry. I don’t think it’s fair for someone to take the position of telling you you should wish him the best.

Who knows? Maybe you’ll arrive there one day. I don’t think today has to be that day. I think today is a day where you have to say to yourself, my responsibility is not to him in wishing him the best. My responsibility is after all the hurt that I have been through to give myself the best. I had years with that person where I perhaps endured more pain than I should have. Where I suffered more than anyone should suffer in a relationship and in the pain of the exit from that relationship and all of the ugliness there, I have been through so much. I deserve some happiness. I deserve some peace. I deserve a rest. I deserve some fun.

What are the things that after all this, after all this pain, all of this ugliness, what are the things that you right now deserve to have? That becomes the reason, that becomes the motivation for not living in a place where you’re thinking about this person all the time. I’m not saying you shouldn’t be angry. Be angry. Feel angry. Feel what you feel. You don’t have to deny your anger. You don’t have to deny . . . One of the big problems we all have is that we’re not good at expressing our feelings about these things. We’re good at complaining about what someone did, but expressing the feeling of I feel so fing angry. I feel so hurt. I feel so betrayed. I feel so disappointed that what the relationship I thought I was in is not the relationship I had or the dream I had of where my life would be did not materialize.

I’m so fing disappointed by life in that way. I’m so disappointed by this person. I’m so deeply angry at this person for how they treated me or for what they made me feel. I’m so deeply hurt for myself that I had to go through that. There’s nothing wrong with expressing those things and the more we can just express not in terms of complaining about someone, “And you’ll never guess what he did after that, and then after all that he did this,” that is complaining about someone and keeping it alive. That’s an unproductive way to keep stoking these same vicious memories we have. If instead we just actually acknowledge our feelings, not what they did, but what do we feel as a result, and we do that in some doses where we use that to express and then to heal having expressed. Like crying, that feeling of crying, Pete Holmes said, “Crying is like throwing up. It doesn’t feel good when you do it, but afterwards you feel better.”

That’s what expressing feelings is like. We express so that we can feel better. So don’t deny yourself those feelings. What you say has almost the tenor of someone who is not . . . You’re almost angry and resentful because you’re being told not to feel your feelings. You’re being told to just keep going and wish him the best and keep moving forward, and that part of you that is mad and upset and disappointed and frustrated, feels so overlooked by that response to it, feels so invalidated by that response to it. “So he just gets to go off and be fing fine and I am supposed to just go, ‘OK, wish him the best. Keep going, keep moving forward.’ ” There’s a part of you inside that, of course, is going to deeply resent that, so allow yourself to feel it. And then in the moments where you’re not feeling that, allow space for a different feeling. And the other feeling is the one where you say, “I deserve, after everything I’ve been through, a good life.”

Whatever that means to me today, it may not mean the same things it meant to me 10 years ago. Maybe I was hanging on to that relationship because I was hanging onto an attraction I had or a fear that I would never be OK alone and now in my life what I value is peace. Now in my life what I value is stability. Now what I value is just my great friendships or my relationship with my kids and the way I’m watching them grow. Or the way that I’m experiencing new things in this period of my life and having adventures and doing the living that I didn’t do then. Somethnig else . . . you can value something else now.

And tell yourself, “I deserve to feel good. I deserve to have a good life, and I’m not going to have a good life if I give more airtime to someone who’s already had more than enough airtime in my life,” because at a certain point what we realize is I could spend my whole life rehashing what this person has done to me, and all it does is rob the good time I have. It allows the bad time to rob the good time. And you don’t owe him anything, but you do owe yourself the good time.

So that’s how we start to move on is we just say, I’m not giving this person the airtime in my mind. I’m not giving them the bandwidth because my future is about me. I am the star of the show and by continuing to think about this person all the time, I’m making them the star of my show and they’ve already had enough of my time. They don’t get any more.

Before you go today, there’s something I want to tell you about. So many of the questions that I have been asked over the last 15 years are about very practical dating issues. “What do I do in this situation with a person? How do I deal with this stage of early dating? What do I say when someone says or does this?” And you know if you’ve been following me for a long time, that I give very practical solutions to those things, but those practical solutions don’t work for a lot of people. Now, why is that? Because underpinning these behaviors that we have and these things that we’re doing that trip us up or sabotage us are much, much deeper belief systems wiring from childhood, from trauma, whether it’s regular trauma or whether it’s CPTSD, complex trauma, we all have these things that have happened in our life that we’re trying to heal from, that we’re trying to overcome.

Some of us don’t even know what it is that created that issue in the first place, but we just know that “‘m not confident. I don’t believe in myself. I don’t think I’m worthy. I keep going for bad people.” It’s like there’s something in our wiring that continuously sabotages us in this area of our life no matter how hard we try, and you may find that that wiring is tripping you up in other areas of your life too. I’m here to tell you that unless we fix that wiring, nothing is going to change. No amount of techniques or tools or resources are going to make the difference until we do the deeper healing on ourselves.

That is exactly the work that I do on the In-Person Retreat, and it’s coming up this October between the 9th and the 15th. It’s a six-day immersive coaching program that I devised 15 years ago now because I knew if I didn’t work on the deeper things that were affecting how people went about their lives and how confident they felt and how worthy they felt, they were never going to have successful love lives. They may have some initial success with their technique, but sooner or later they would always find themselves returning to their center, and if their center wasn’t aligned, if they weren’t feeling good in themselves, then their center was always going to sabotage them.

If you’ve been watching this channel for some time and you enjoy the content, but it’s become very apparent to you that there are some deeper things going on with you, internal barriers and conflicts that are holding you back, this is my invitation for you to come and do the deeper work with me. We are much more full than normal at this stage. We’re over 85% sold out, so this is my invitation to you. If you’re serious and you want one of the remaining seats, come over to MHRetreat.com and join us in October while there’s still the chance. And you and I will get to see each other in person, which will be a delight because maybe for years you have followed me here digitally and we’ve never had the chance to actually be together in the same room, so that would be a very special thing for me. We’ll see you soon. Thanks for watching.

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1 Replies to “How To Get Over Your Ex (When You Still Obsess Over Them)”

  • I really enjoy everything I see of your work, Matthew. Hope my comments aren’t too over the top. I’ve had a colourful life. Maybe one day I’ll do a virtual retreat (no money to travel overseas). At 69 I still get a kick out of guys (& girls) telling me I’m amazing, or an inspiration, whatever!

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