“107 Healthy Things to Do After a Break Up,” or “How Andrea Became a Happy, Functioning Human Again”

  1. Be responsible — i.e. wear sunscreen. And wash your hands after you apply it so it doesn’t get in your eyes. (Thank you, lady who works at Gateway of India in Tacoma!)
  2. Blast this song on full volume over and over and over.
  3. In fact, create a break-up playlist on Spotify, and ask your friends to contribute to it.
  4. In fact, tweet to Rozzi to tell her how much you appreciated that song. She just may reply. Screen Shot 2018-05-13 at 11.01.41 PM
  5. Buy yourself a kick-ass dress that makes you feel like a woman, and wear it out on the town.
  6. Go out and do things with friends. Seriously. Go to that vintage show, even if you have no intentions of buying anything. Go to your friend’s roaring 20s birthday party and rock your aforementioned F-ing amazing new dress (thank you, Ross!).
  7. But also know when to sit in silence.
  8. Enjoy nature.
  9. Be self-aware. Adjust your thoughts and behaviors accordingly.
  10. Acknowledge that this is a process of self-discovery. You’re still not completely out of the woods yet. And know that that’s OK. It’s a journey.
  11. Stop contacting him.
  12. When your friend offers to charge you 50 cents each time you say his name, take her up on it. And follow through when you do.
  13. That said, still talk about happened. It’s healthy. Just don’t say his name.
  14. Write poetry, but keep some of it to yourself. Write letters to him, but keep them in your journal, where no one else will read them. You may get a chance to say them to him in person one day. You probably will not. And that’s OK.
  15. Wear make-up and jewelry, and do your hair however you damn well please.
  16. Love your body, and what you put in it. But eat snack food occasionally. “Everything in moderation, including moderation.” — Oscar Wilde.
  17. Go to work, and love the conversations you have with customers.
  18. Do a crossword puzzle, read the Dear Abby column, complete the Celebrity Cipher word puzzle, read your books, read books recommended to you that you’ve been meaning to read for a while. Because those are things you enjoy doing.
  19. Do what makes you happy, just not manically.
  20. Watch Frasier (especially this episode), The Great British Bake-Off, John Mulaney’s comedy, Tig Notaro’s comedy, and whatever other shows make you happy.
  21. Refrain from posting certain things to social media. Delete the posts and poems and blog posts you really shouldn’t have posted in the first place.
  22. Apologize, formally, to those you need to.
  23. Listen to your friends. Their advice is sound. They saw — and see — things that you don’t.
  24. Be alone when you need to be. In part because you need to wallow, as Lorelei told Rory in Gilmore Girls. In part because you need to be still and sit with certain thoughts.
  25. Shower and take baths regularly. Read. Don’t watch a ton of TV. Listen to music, not quite so much news. It’s true what they say: music heals.
  26. In fact, do whatever self-care steps you need to. Whatever is right for you.
  27. Drink water. And limit your coffee intake.
  28. Pray. Meditate. Listen.
  29. Post happy things to social media, like cute animal videos and inspirational quotes and funny TV-show quotes.
  30. But maybe limit the number of things you post in one day, to, say, five. To avoid the manic tendency.
  31. Get out in the sunshine.
  32. Uplift your friends.
  33. Wrestle your nephew to the floor in a bear hug until he yells, “Mom, get me out of here!”
  34. Be present.
  35. Enjoy time with family.
  36. Laugh.
  37. Acknowledge when you look damn beautiful. And don’t apologize for thinking or saying it.
  38. Feel more confident in yourself as a human and in your body than you ever have in your life.
  39. Sing loudly. In the car. In the shower. Wherever.
  40. To paraphrase Taylor Mali: “Write, write, write, and then read.”
  41. Don’t give a damn about the thoughts of people who don’t matter.
  42. Believe in yourself.
  43. Plan a future — just for yourself. The rest will fall into place.
  44. Be happy.
  45. Listen to Kate Winslet and other body-positive people.
  46. Compliment yourself — and mean it.
  47. Listen. Listen to God. Listen to the important people in your life.
  48. Be OK with the fact that you probably will never see or hear from him again. Sincerely, be OK with this. Your life will move on.
  49. Don’t worry about being too happy.
  50. Listen to your parents.
  51. Live your best life.
  52. Follow your own advice.
  53. Be grateful for the little things — like finding tissue paper to wrap your friend’s birthday gift. Or finding the perfect gift for your friend in the first place.
  54. Don’t be concerned with perfection. Seriously, don’t.
  55. Listen to those God whispers, as Oprah calls them.
  56. Revisit the sanctuary that is your old choir room. Be present in the music.
  57. Treat weekends like weekends.
  58. Consider learning ASL. After all, you’ve always wanted to learn. Or Norwegian. Or Italian.
  59. Get up early. Be productive.
  60. Show your loved ones your appreciation for them.
  61. Be open and honest with your loved ones. They want to help you, but you have to tell them how.
  62. Take care of yourself when you’re well (mentally or physically) to ensure that you stay well.
  63. Take care of yourself when you’re unwell (mentally or physically). Cancel appointments if necessary.
  64. “The more you praise and celebrate your life, the more there is in life to celebrate.” — Oprah Winfrey
  65. Collect inspirational quotes.
  66. Don’t be afraid to live your life, exactly as it is right now.
  67. It’s OK to be a little angry at him, and a little bitter. Rejection always stings, even if it is for the best. Just don’t let it make YOU bitter.
  68. Lip sync passionately. Preferably with hand motions. In the mirror.
  69. Keep things readily available in your car for your self-care.
  70. Don’t take him back. Don’t.
  71. Don’t ask him to take you back. Don’t.
  72. Be open to just about everything. But not quite everything.
  73. When it feels like everything is falling into place, accept it. Don’t question it.
  74. When you’re taking anti-depressants, consult your doctor adjust them as needed. And talk to a licensed mental health counselor (LMHC).
  75. Because, as your friend said, going from upper to lower to upper to lower is physically exhausting. Your body can’t keep doing that. Your mind can’t keep doing that.
  76. Don’t be so self-critical about things like your parking, or other — more important — things. No one cares about them as much as you do. So why are you so concerned by it?
  77. Swear a little bit.
  78. Find presents and cards that fit your friends perfectly.
  79. Acknowledge courteous drivers.
  80. Be a courteous driver.
  81. Be a safe driver.
  82. Don’t be reckless. In anything you say or do.
  83. Tell the young people in your life that you didn’t get kissed until age 26, and you did not have a boyfriend until age 28, and that that is perfectly OK.
  84. But don’t go into too much detail with those you shouldn’t.
  85. Manage your time wisely. Don’t be late. But don’t beat yourself if you’re a little late from time to time.
  86. Tip well and often.
  87. Acknowledge that clichés about life and love are true.
  88. Don’t sweat the small stuff. Seriously. It will only hurt your health.
  89. Find the things that bring you catharsis, and then do them. Go for a run, take a shower, spend time with animals, punch a pillow, sing, go for a drive in the sunshine, spend time with friends, cook something healthy, etc., etc.
  90. Enjoy being an adult.
  91. Treat yourself. Buy that iced coffee.
  92. Acknowledge that despite everything, your ex did make you feel closer to God, and be grateful to him — and to God — for that.
  93. Feel God’s presence.
  94. Pursue the man you’ve been wanting to ask out for two years. However, accept the fact that he may not be the one, and know that that’s OK.
  95. Drive down backcountry roads in the sunshine.
  96. Laugh at the sunscreen you cannot get off of the paint of your car. Or your steering wheel. Research ways to remove sunscreen from one’s car.
  97. Take your former student’s advice and keep your positive energy.
  98. Trust your gut. Always.
  99. Be the designated driver.
  100. Don’t drink when you’re sad. And don’t numb yourself in other ways.
  101. Listen to the blues when you have the blues. Listen to break-up songs when you’re going through a break-up. Listen to Christian music when you need to hear Christian music.
  102. Say what you mean, and don’t apologize for it.
  103. Drive with the window down and turn off the air conditioner.
  104. Text yourself the affirmations you need to hear so you won’t forget them.
  105. Listen to God when he says, “I put you through all of those things so that you would become who you are today.”
  106. Listen to God when he says, “I have someone better suited for you.”
  107. Give people the benefit of the doubt. Especially him.
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About Andrea Nicole

NZ enthusiast in the PNW. Internationally published writer, educator, grammar nerd, genealogist, and all-around storyteller. Recovering homebody. @Whitworth and @WGU alumna. #edchat
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