‘Detox’ is probably one of the most commonly used terms in the fitness industry but have you ever heard of ‘ex-detox?’ If you haven’t, you’re not alone, as most women out there don’t realise how beneficial it can be for their emotional health.
Every time you’re in a relationship, you consciously or unconsciously, give away parts of yourself but also adopt certain behaviours as you often mirror your partner. Romantic couples are attuned to one another which is completely normal as it’s a part of our fundamental nature as social beings. When you’re in a happy relationship this exchange is a sign of comfort, trust and good communication but what happens when you break up with someone? What happens to all those emotional parts of you that are still attached to your ex and to those habits and thought processes you adopted while you were with them?
An ‘ex-detox’ is all about rediscovering yourself and reclaiming your old self. It’s about celebrating your independence and growing into a new and improved version of yourself.
Visualise yourself as a rainbow. You start out bright and colourful and as you go through different relationships, you start getting a bit duller and less vibrant. An ‘ex-detox’ is all about ensuring that you shine brightly once more!
So how long does the ‘ex-detox’ last? I’d say that you need at least a month to reclaim yourself after the end of a relationship before starting any new serious relationship. You can continue to have sex and flirt if you want but I strongly believe it’s important to focus on yourself during this period. Sounds hard? I’m sure you can make it if you put your mind to it. After all you’re a strong woman!
So here are the key steps to doing a complete detox from your ex:
Plan it. Pick the least busy month when you won’t be distracted by too many social engagements.
Commit. Adopt the following mindset: ‘I make a promise to myself. I will get rid of everything that belongs to my ex(es), and I will reclaim myself and get my life back.’
Clear your living space of any reminder, photos, belongings relating to your previous relationship etc. If some memorabilia is really important, put it away temporarily in a box and get it out of sight. You can always get rid of it later, once you feel strong enough. This will also give you the inspiration to reclaim your personal space and make it all about you. If your ex hated plants in the house but you love them, this is the right time to fill the house with plants. Think about what would make you happy when you get back home after a long, tiring day and make it happen.
Learn how to be happy by yourself. Go to the cinema on your own, have dinner out on your own. This is an extremely empowering experience. Don’t be fazed when they ask you if you’re waiting for someone to join you. Smile at them and say ‘Do I have to?’ It’s time to start enjoying own company.
Do something for yourself. Yes, you may have a great job and amazing friends but when was the last time you took up an exciting new hobby or acquired a new skill? This is the time to challenge yourself and try something new. This will not only be fun but will help you to become more self-confident.
Find a mantra that will help you transition into this new, beautiful phase in your life. Repeat your mantra aloud every day, for example: ‘I am free of past relationships and I am ready to embrace my brand new life!’ The key is to keep reminding yourself why you’re doing this and what your end goal is.
Celebrate the end of your ‘ex-detox’ with a ‘cleansing’ ritual. It may sound like a cliché but having a long bubble bath (perhaps with a glass of bubbly) will not only help you feel relaxed but will also help you feel lighter with all your worries going down the drain. Get an early night and in the morning you will be ready to put yourself back out there as a whole new amazing you!
Olga Levancuka is a world leading life coach and is the author of ‘How To Be Selfish’. She has coached some of the UK’s most prominent entrepreneurs, celebrities from all across the fame spectrum as well as household political names.