Here is how you heal.
1. You’re not as interested in what other people think as you used to be.
When the heartache was fresh, you relied heavily on family and friends to guide you, give you advice, get you out of the house and back on your feet again. You were constantly listening to their ideas, constantly trying to heed their warnings, constantly trying to do whatever they thought was right because you were desperate.
Now, you’re on your own journey. You’re letting the past stay in the past, letting the pain slowly fade into the backdrop of your life. You’re no longer concerned with what people think about you, what you should do, or who you should be. You’ve started to focus on yourself and what you want, rather than what everyone else thinks you need.
2. You’re encouraged by other people’s relationships, rather than feeling lonely in their presence.
Where you used to feel broken every time you looked at someone in a healthy relationship, or walked past a couple canoodling on the street, you’re now calm and collected. Happy people don’t bother you anymore; in fact, you’re encouraged by these connections. Every engagement post on social media, every kiss, every man and woman hand-in-hand brings you hope, not heartache.
3. You’re comfortable going to places, or doing things alone.
You’ve finally started going to that little diner on the end of your block, and sipping coffee in the corner booth at the coffee shop where you and your ex used to go on dates. You’re content being by yourself, no longer looking for someone to fill your life, or for your ex to stumble back in. In fact, you’re pretty damn content being your own company.
4. You’ve said ‘no’ to plans or engagements because you want to, not because you’re sad.
You’re no longer dragging your booty out of the house just to try to pretend to be happy. You’ve finally gotten to the point where you don’t feel empty and you don’t need to attend social events to fill your schedule or to try to get over him/her. If you say ‘no’ to an engagement, it’s because you’re fine, you’re content, and you’re simply not interested in going—not because you’re heartbroken and want to curl up into a ball in your room.
5. You’ve created boundaries for yourself in terms of your future love life.
You’ve started to think about what’s really important to you, what you value, and what you’d look for in a future partner. Instead of obsessing over what and who you’ve lost, you’ve actually started thinking about potential boyfriend/girlfriend material. And you’ve set boundaries for what you want, need, and deserve.
6. You’ve realized the steps you need to take from toxic people, and have actively made some distance between yourself and them.
Whether it’s blocking your ex’s new person, removing some crazy friends from your life, or taking time to be with positive, platonic people instead of ones who only remind you of what you’ve lost, you’ve taken healthy steps away from things and people that don’t grow you, build you, or help you move on from what’s no longer meant to be in your life.
7. You’re able to stumble across pictures of your ex and feel peace, rather than pain.
Thinking about your ex with another person doesn’t drive you absolutely crazy anymore. Actually, when you happen across a photo of him/her with another person, you’re strangely happy. Because you know both of you are moving on. And this is okay.
8. You’ve accepted the fact that some things and people aren’t meant to be.
You’ve come to terms with your breakup, as much as you thought you never would. You don’t have the urge to drunk text him/her. You don’t feel the need to check on his/her social media every day. You actually have realized that perhaps the two of you weren’t right for one another, and you can appreciate the relationship for what it was.
9. You’ve made room in your life for things that challenge you.
You are now focusing on yourself—not a relationship, or a broken heart. You now have time and energy to do things that you didn’t have the time for before, or never felt compelled to do. For the first time in a long while, you’ve filled your schedule with everything but your ex: hobbies, passions, plans, and things that challenge you. Instead of dreading your days, you now see each one as an opportunity.
10. You have expectations—for yourself, for your future lover, for life—that you never had before.
You’ve reset the way you look at the world. No longer are you going to settle, going to be miserable, going to let how someone treats you or the way they exit your life define who you are. Instead, you’ve created expectations: for bettering yourself, for letting a new person in, for how you’re going to live from this moment on. And you feel more motivated and purposeful than you ever before.
11. You’re actually okay with the idea of flirting with someone else.
The idea of being around another person, of opening up, of going on a date doesn’t freak you out anymore. You’re no longer clinging to your past lover, hoping he/she’d pop back into your life, or holding out for some sort of sign from him/her. Instead, you’re going about your life without actively trying to pursue anyone or anything. But if the opportunity comes, you wouldn’t hate it, either.