So your ex just got into a relationship. What's next?

Your morning ritual of scrolling through Insta is rudely interrupted when you see your ex-bae standing a little too close for comfort with another person.

OK, let's not totally freak out yet, maybe they're just friends?

Sorry bb, that "happier than ever" caption topped off with a sparkling pink heart is not looking too good rn.

Breakups are hard enough as is, but seeing your ex fully jump into the dating world again after you guys called it quits can make you feel like you're back to square one in your healing journey. But trust us when we tell you that your love dilemma isn't going to last forever. Here's how to cope with the not-so-good news (and that pit in your stomach)...

Jealousy, jealousy (it's normal)


We love GUTS as much as the next person, but Olivia Rodrigo really knew what she was talking about in this SOUR  hit. Listen, you and your ex shared memories and a whole past together. And just because you're broken up doesn't mean those feelings will flip off with a switch (no matter how badly you may want them to). Seeing someone who used to be a significant part of your life sharing memories with someone new is absolutely grounds for feeling a little jealous.

What's important here is to ask yourself *why* you are jealous. Is it because you truly still have feelings for this person, or are you hung up on the idea of who they used to be? Are you uneasy about how quickly they've moved on?

DW, you don't need to have answers to those questions right now—but taking some time to find out where these emotions are coming from is the best way to learn how to protect your peace moving forward. 

Introducing your "letting go" ritual

@syd _anastasia_

Your emotions might be all over the place right now. Filling your head with what-ifs (and probably some not-so-great things about your ex, too) is not the way to create the positive energy you need to get through these tough moments. Sometimes, we skim over our feelings because we think we might be feeling something—rather than validating these sentiments as real.

Here's where your "letting go" ritual" comes into play: Seeing your emotions in a more tangible, physical way can help you confront them right in front of your eyes, rather than trying to organize everything in your head.

One of the ways you can do this is with a balloon and a Sharpie (yep, it's that easy). Blow up a balloon, and use your marker to write out everything you feel rn. Be honest—there are no right or wrong answers! Once you're done, you have two options. You can either pop the balloon, or you can let it go and watch it float into the sky.

This simple act will help you release your feelings into the world...and take some of the pressure off your shoulders.

Start spreading love


You've had a girls night planned for the longest time, so why not take the plans out of the group chat and into your living room (BFF charcuterie night, anyone?). Love can be a touchy subject right now, but you owe it to yourself to prove it exists in the tiniest of spaces around you—sans S.O. From adding positive affirmation Post-it notes in your school bathrooms to volunteering at your local pet shelter, spreading a little love can fill your heart in ways other than romantically (and yes, it feels equally good—if not better).

Check in on your healing timeline 


Healing is by no means linear, and everyone's timeline is totally different! One of the best ways to check in on yourself is to spend some alone time in places that give you comfort. Maybe you take yourself out on a café date and journal while sipping on some chai. After you finish your meditative session, look back on what you wrote and highlight emotional words that stand out to you. 

Just because your ex has already moved on doesn't mean there's anything wrong with you or that you're not on track to finding your next boo, too.

And if you're not looking for another love rn? There's no rush, girl!  Not wanting to be in a relationship is totally OK, and as long as you listen to what your mind and body tell you, you'll find your special someone when the moment's just right.

Follow us on IG for more relationship advice @girlslifemag!

Slider image: @_xochitl.gomez
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by Annika Chaves | 11/17/2023