Throughout the years, I’ve found that people tend to overlook emotional affairs.
If there isn’t anything physical, what’s the problem? But, there tends to be a pretty big problem that is hard to overcome.
For those reading this, you probably know what I’m talking about.
You probably really clicked with your lover, right? I know I did. It felt like they understood you and could share in your pain as no one else could. And around the same time, you started to realize everything that was “wrong” in your current relationship and how your partner has “let themselves go”.
That might have been quite tough for you to read. But I promise it’s a necessary step to getting over your emotional affair. To realize that’s what you were doing is huge.
I’m proud of you. You’re not quite done yet though! There are a few more steps to go through to allow yourself to fully move on from your emotional affair.
Right, there’s no time like the present!
1. Romance vs. Love
Put plainly, forbidden fruit tastes the sweetest. So, when you’re lusting after the connection of your lover, you tend to be blind to the wondrous, fantastic, monogamous relationship you have by your side.
Think of it this way: brushing your teeth isn’t exciting. Brewing tea isn’t exciting. But they are both humble activities that bring you and your partner’s love into the real world.
It symbolizes how you are willing to share your everyday life with someone — and that is incredibly special.
I bet you have been fantasizing pretty heavily about your lover. I get it. An emotional affair is a heavy thing after all. But now it’s time to bring your frisky thoughts back to your significant other.
Whenever your mind starts to wander to your ex-lover’s naughty passions, bring your thoughts back to your partner. Try to imagine making love with them and see how that works to rid your brain of your lover.
3. Cherish Memories With Your SO
Before your emotional affair came to be, you will have had some amazing times with your partner. Reconnect with these memories!
Do whatever it takes to bring those feelings, sounds, and smells back. Whether you look at old pictures, listen to your guys’ song, or even take a trip to where you first met. Try to relive all the fun times.
4. Invest In Your Relationship
Now is the time for you to truly put your time and effort into your relationship.
The way I think about it is that I would never expect a plant that I haven’t watered to grow. So, why would I expect my relationship to recover and even become stronger if I don’t nurture it?
In my experience, just saying sorry doesn’t get through nearly as much as showing them you’re sorry. This could be taking them out for dinner or giving them a back massage. You know your partner better than me so do whatever they’d appreciate.
5. Replace It
Trust me, I know how it feels when you end an emotional affair. You’ve lost an important relationship so it’s bound to hurt. The best way I’ve found to deal with this is to pour my heart and soul into a new challenge.
Don’t get me wrong, I know how crucial it is to feel everything but a guaranteed way to move forward is to get stuck into something new.
6. Outsmart Your Brain
When you’re infatuated (like you are with your lover), the brain releases a boost of dopamine and norepinephrine. This makes you do ridiculous things. It’s science.
You just need to outsmart this spike of hormones. Regardless of how you do it, make yourself aware that it’s all physiological.
7. Treat Your Addiction
Calling your emotional affair an addiction helps a lot. It makes it far less personal and it gives you viable steps you can take to get over the relationship.
Why is it similar to drug addiction? I’ll tell you.
Your affair has allowed you to separate yourself from pain, guilt, and any other negative emotion that you feel. You’ll have bought into the whole sense of fulfilment and connection. Like it or not, this is exactly what drugs do.
8. Re-Engage With Your Partner
I’ll let you in on a secret. I used to find out where my lover was going to be at various times during the day and just happen to be there. It allowed me to spend time with them. This sounds familiar, I imagine.
All that needs to be done is to do this to your partner. If you know he/she goes to lunch at Taco Bell on Wednesdays, happen to go there yourself and see how delighted they are!
9. Be Around Friends
Right now, friends are non-negotiable. I promise you that you’re going to need them around you to keep on trucking.
Try to make sure these guys and gals have nothing to do with your ex-lover. Otherwise, someone will inevitably bring him/her up and it will prevent you from entirely moving on. I don’t want that for you! So, I suggest you find some “safe” friends.
10. Write It Down
There was a study done several years ago that showed writing about your feelings towards physical wounds can help them heal faster. Journalling, or starting a diary primarily for your penned thoughts and feelings, can enable you to work through them. And yep, you guessed it, you’ll start to heal and get over it much quicker.
There’s no doubt that the relationship with your lover was intense. Therefore, you need to grieve the loss. Like your friends, this is non-negotiable.
Sometimes, you’ll find that guilt gets in the way of this. But be as gentle with yourself as possible and allow yourself to grieve. I promise it’s the only way to really overcome this tough time.
I know this sounds a bit like I’m preaching. But I trust — I’ve been there, done that and worn the tear-stained t-shirt. It sucks, but you can get through it. I believe in you!