You’re in a bad place. Not only has your girlfriend dumped you – she’s moved on. She has a new boyfriend. You want her back. What’s your best strategy for stealing her from the new guy?
First, let’s back up a little. Are you sure you want her back? Or are you just like one of Pavlov’s dogs, crazy for her just because she dumped you? During the first days, weeks, even months after the breakup, you can’t trust your own thoughts and emotions when it comes to your ex. Trust me. [RELATED: Why Your Ex is Sending Mixed Signals ]
That’s why the first thing you need to do is take some time to clear your head (and your heart). I recommend, as do other top relationship experts, at least a full month of no communication with your ex after the breakup. Not only does this give you time to be sure you still want a relationship with your ex – a real relationship, based on sincere attraction, friendship, fun and compatibility – but it also gives her time to miss you and wonder what you’re up to, or even wonder why she dumped you in the first place.
During this month of silence you haven’t been staying home all day with the curtains drawn, sobbing or drinking too much. No, you’ve been out having fun, taking a trip, joining a new club, working out at the gym. Those things are all good for your emotional state and your self-esteem, and they’re also the things that make you a more attractive person. So if you hope to attract your ex back, or anyone else, those are all good things to do, even if you have to force yourself at first.
Take going to the gym, for example. It isn’t really what you think, that you’ll go to the gym and get totally fit and ripped and she’ll take one look at you and want you back. Not in a month, anyway – fitness like that takes months. But in just one workout you can give yourself a much more valuable weapon in the fight for you ex – a positive attitude, particularly about yourself and your own life. She’ll see you happy, well-adjusted, and emotionally stable and that’s much more attractive than muscles. Trust me. She’s not interested in dating a couch potato, and not just because he has love handles, but because couch potatoes aren’t very interesting. [RELATED: Will He Take You Back? How to Tell if Your Ex-Boyfriend Still Wants You?]
Get up off your couch, open those curtains, let the sunshine in, and get some exercise. You’ll feel better and happier, and that shows in your body language, your speech, and your smile.
Now, back to your strategy. It’s likely, if your ex is already dating shortly after she dumped you, that she’s on the rebound. This is a commonly used term that refers to the tornado of emotions everyone feels after a breakup. Like I said, you can’t trust your own thoughts and feelings during that time. Many people think a new relationship will save all their problems, and they reach for it like a drowning person clutching at a life ring. Better to solve your own problems, if you ask me, than to think dating someone is going to fix your life for you. But don’t get me started.
You’ll feel better when I tell you that statistically speaking, most rebound relationships don’t last more than a few weeks, and that they rarely develop into a long-term, significant, deep relationship. So it isn’t likely your ex is going to stick with this new guy anyway. And that’s your strategy – to focus on yourself during that month of silence and during her brief rebound. When she breaks up with this guy, you’ll be there – not the old you she dumped, but the new, interesting, happy, healthy you who joined that sailing club, or took those cooking classes or learned to SCUBA dive.
Keeping the focus on yourself during those months after a breakup is important. It seems contrary to what Hollywood’s romance writers tell us, where you see guys winning girls by smothering them with overwhelming, constant, romantic attention, showering them with amazing, thoughtful gifts every day. Remember, guys, movies aren’t real. Romance as portrayed in movies is just as fake as fights in movies. If you’ve ever been in a real fight, you know it ain’t like in the movies. Whenever the hero has to fight a bunch of bad guys, for some reason they all politely attack one at a time, rather than just dog piling on him.
Contrary to those movie romances, real women don’t want to be smothered – there’s a fine line between romantic attention and creepiness. If you come across as a guy who thinks only about his girlfriend 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, she’s gonna wonder if something’s wrong. Why don’t you have any hobbies, why don’t you have any other interests than her?
So that’s why you focus on yourself during that month of silence. You’re not trying to create a fake, phony you, don’t get me wrong. What you’re trying to do is remind yourself that you’re a great, fun guy who goes out and has fun and learns new stuff. Reminding yourself about that is the surest way to impress your ex, or if she doesn’t come back, your next girlfriend. Trust me.