Is it possible to completely cut off ties with your ex if social media still exists? Whether your ex has a Facebook page, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, or even LinkedIn, their lives still exist on the internet, and if they are the type to update regularly, you have full access to what's going on, even if you're not speaking directly.
We passively communicate things to our exes through our social media profiles as we own the narrative. Whether you're posting photos with your crew talking about how wondrous life is or posting a Boomerang of you popping that Champagne cork in celebration of getting your dream job, we see the moments we miss out on. But what happens when it begins to become too much? Social media leaves much to the imagination; we see the photos, videos, and job updates but are left with little context. Sometimes the questioning can make us spiral out, and next thing you know, you're addicted.
So how do you get off the social media stalking drug? Here are five things to consider when cutting off ties with your ex for real this time.
1. You have to want to stop
First step is most important, because if you don't want to stop, then you won't. So let's start there. Typically it takes seeing something quite painful or annoying to make you want to stop, even when it's still addicting. If you have found yourself crying at 2 a.m. from something that you saw on their page, then be real with yourself and know that this is not healthy. In the words of Kanye West, "admittin' is the first step."
2. You have to send them love
Now look, I know this might sound crazy. But think about it. When you hate someone, that hate sticks around, it lingers. Love is liberation. Consider sending love and light to the person, otherwise, you'll always have an inclination to see what they're up to — after all, hate is obsessive. You know what I'm talking about. The first thing you say when a hater reveals themselves to you is, "Well, they're clearly obsessed with me to be concerned with my life." So don't be a hater, boo. Send love. Wish them well. It doesn't mean you have to reach out. You don't need the other person to heal your wounds for you.
Just appreciate your ex for the lessons they taught you, honor the good times, honor the reasons they're not the one, and then drop it.
3. Remember that Instagram is not reality
Even once you're over everything and moved on, it's still wise not to let your curiosity get the best of you. Because while you may think, "Who cares what's on their profile? I'm going to check anyways, I'm just curious to see . . . " you run the risk of letting unnecessary negative thoughts into your mind.
We all create theories in our heads when we don't have all the facts, which is why Instagram is misleading. You start digging through every caption and comment, deciphering what they meant when they posted a lyric to that Frank Ocean song or that book you bought them, or sometimes they even post a photo of your eye and call you their soulmate after they've been blocked for five months. (OK, that's from personal experience, oops). The point is, what's posted online is open to public interpretation because it's in a public space. So in reality, what you find on social media isn't going to be the truth anyway. We only share the things we want to share; we only build a perception of how we want to be perceived.
4. Post with intention
When you post something with the intention of hurting your ex or trying to get their attention (like the guy who posted a photo of my eye on his Instagram page), you can expect uncomfortable results. Your intention informs the outcome. I mean, honestly, who cares what you post — it's your life — but this is more of an internal thing. It's not about anyone else or what your followers think. Thinking about your true intention for posting something can save you time spent wondering how it will affect your ex if they see it. Post about your new relationship, your new job, or that song you wrote about the breakup, just don't let the intention be focused on trying to hurt them; make it about sharing your truth. Let it come from a pure place.
5. Fill yourself up with love
Instead of keeping yourself full of love, you were letting this ex take from your cup. Think of it this way: every time you go to creep, it's tipping your cup over. You gotta keep your cup full! Be kind to yourself. It's OK to still think about the person. What's not OK is to feed into the thought that what they're doing or posting about is relevant to who you are now. Stay in your truth, and stay in the present. As you continue to do that, love will find ways to rush in your life, and the idea of creeping on your ex will no longer sound like a drug you'd like to partake in.