Normal Adventures

Heidi's Patented 12 Steps To Getting Over Anyone (or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Be Single... but later, not single)

   Wed, November 8, 2006 - 8:44 AM
Heidi's "12-step"* Relationship Recovery Program
*note: may not actually be 12 steps

1. allow yourself one (and only one) self-indulgent crying-and-drunk snotfest. Go ahead, mourn and get messy. Cause the next day, no more of that.

2. get a haircut/color change or change some other personal appearance/grooming habit... get that tattoo you've always wanted, start getting brazilians - whatever it is you've been thinking you may want to try. Do this in the first week after the breakup if possible.

3. this is a crucial one... pack your social schedule, far in advance. Call all of those friends you've been meaning to see more of, and even some you're only 'eh' about. Accept every party invitation extended to you, and *go*. Your only acceptable excuse for not going is if you got sucked into some other social event. Seriously, go out (or stay in) with friends every single night for at least the first 2 weeks after the breakup. You want to get to where you're looking forward to a quiet night home with the dog.

4. no drinking. OK, minimal drinking - but definitely no getting drunk, after step 1 has been completed. For the first 2 weeks (possibly the first month, depending on how you feel), you may have no more than 1 drink/night - none is preferable, but those social situations you've set up in 3 may get awkward/boring with nothing. I'm totally serious, limit yourself to one max.

5. endorphin replacement. You must do at least 30 minutes of meaningful exercise (you'll know what's meaningful to you) every single day for the first two weeks, and at least 5 days/ week for the two weeks after that. An hour is better. You want to be endorphined-up, tired, and wicked busy. I'm sure Diva would love some runs...

6. eat healthy. Eat really healthy for at least the first two weeks - lots of veggies, light on the fattening stuff... the goal here is 3-fold: 1. avoid consoling yourself with chocolate/sugar/fat 2. feeling better when you're eating better and 3. combined with steps 4 and 5, you'll find the next step easy...

7. get back down to dating weight. This step is not, of course, relevant to everyone, but many of us put on a few pounds when we're in a long-term relationship, and getting those back off will make you feel good. You can also look at it as symbolically losing the baggage of the relationship. Of course, do this in a healthy way, not by starving yourself or just eating grapefruit for a week or something stupid.

8. once you've made good progress on step 7, reward yourself with some retail therapy (note: if your finances do not permit retail therapy, sorry, but please please skip this step - don't put yourself in debt, that'll make you feel bad, which we're trying to avoid). New clothes may be in order, or perhaps it's some new furniture, a new bike -

9. not necessarily in order here, but... clean your house. get rid of 'his' stuff (whether actually his or not), pull down his photos, etc. But also, really, clean the house - it's nice to come home to a clean house, it will stop smelling like him faster, and you'll be more psyched to have friends over if it's put-together.

10. if relevant... are there things that you like to do but he doesn't, so you haven't done them in a while? Or maybe it's something you want to try, but he wasn't interested or you didn't feel like you had time? Maybe it's signing up for and training for a marathon, maybe taking an art class at Berkeley Extension, maybe doing more yoga or traveling outside the country... maybe going to restaurants that he was too broke to go to... I dunno what it is for you, but try to identify those things and go do them.

11. this one's crucial to completing the program, but the timing is really hard to control... you need to find some other guy you find hot and at least make out with him. Sometimes this takes a week, sometimes 3 months.. but it must be done. Accept it and keep your eyes open to possibilities, and don't necessarily pass over a guy you think is hot but not someone you'd want to be in a relationship with.. that's not really the goal here ;)

12. throughout the program, there may be times when you want to fall off the wagon and call him (not drinking will prevent the ever-dangerous drunk-dial scenario, but we're all still human). For this reason, it's important to have a sponsor - or preferably multiple. Your sponsors are people who you can call anytime (preferably not at 5am, but if you're gonna call him if you don't talk to your sponsor, then call your sponsor - she'll forgive you), and they'll help you figure out what you need - maybe your plans for the night fell through and you need someone to come over and hang out, or you're gonna cry and want some sympathy. Ask the folks you'd like to be your sponsors if they'll play this role for you, then make sure their numbers are in your cell. You probably won't call them nearly as much as you may think you'll want to; it'll be comforting and will help keep you on the program just to know that you *should* call a sponsor instead of calling him.

You probably see the goals behind the program: keep busy, so you lose the habit of thinking about him and spending time with him; redirect your energies elsewhere; and get your self-esteem back up so you find that after a couple weeks without him, you feel better than you did with him. After all, you didn't break up because you made each other happy and fulfilled... and/but you need to be happy and fulfilled with and by yourself before you can be that way in a relationship, so get your own house in order.


add a comment
Wed, November 8, 2006 - 8:51 AM
This is actually pretty good stuff. I even did some of this myself. Is there a male version or should we just up the amount of vodka?
Wed, November 8, 2006 - 9:19 AM
This is really good, where were these 2 years ago? lol

I understand the not getting drunk, that way you are not prone to depression or worse yet, drunk dialing or e-mailing! VERY important!!!!

Speaking of miss you and so when are we going to go have a couple of drinks???
Wed, November 8, 2006 - 10:21 AM
That Heidi -- she's a smart one.
Wed, November 8, 2006 - 5:31 PM
thank you
LilShadow pointed me to this, and I'm going to post it in my lj to remind me. You're completely right.
Wed, November 8, 2006 - 6:52 PM
right. I can't seem to get past stage a-1: Lie in bed staring at the ceiling.
I appreciate this list and will endeavor to integrate some of these things.
I am still functioning at work, at least the heartache hasn't penetrated there.
However, i'm in rinse-repeat mode of lie on floor/lie in bed/move to computer/lie in bed/lie on floor.

Wed, November 8, 2006 - 8:19 PM
Heh, I've actually seen this twice today. I've already started on (2), but that plan had been set in motion prior to the breakup. Also, I'm going to skip out on (4), me and the booze are comfortable with our relationship...
Thu, November 9, 2006 - 9:49 AM
who else posted it? It's not an internet forward and it literally *is* heidi's... was it attributed?