“I need help. Is it even possible to get over and stop caring about someone you still have to see regularly e.g at school or at work? How?”
First, let's change your understanding of the word “caring.”
It has several parts.
Here are 3…
- Liking and appreciating a person.
- Being sexually attracted to a person.
- Having great memories with a person.
And here are 3 more…
- Constantly thinking about a person.
- Wanting to be with a person.
- Imagining you cannot be happy without a person.
Do you see the difference?
There are positive forms of "caring"
The first 3 parts should never change, unless you change fundamentally as a person- or the other person changes in some drastic way - physically, lifestyle, behavior, or values.
It won’t help you to fight that, or to try to “forget” those things, because they are not about that person, they are about who you are.
Simply embrace those feelings and memories, they’re yours to enjoy. Accept that they tell you about yourself, and what you want in your life, and who you’d like to connect with. Use your attraction as a compass to guide your decisions in your social life, not as a magnet that makes you feel “stuck” to one individual.
And there are negative forms, too
The second 3 parts aren’t helping you at all, and can absolutely be changed,
Here are five important tips to help.
#1 - Learn what it is that you liked, and seek that in others
First, your mind keeps reminding you about this person because there are things about them it likes. Figure out what those things are, and go find them in other people. Male and female. Friends and romantic-potentials.
Once you start meeting other cool people, your dopamine and oxytocin levels will chill out a bit, and soon you’ll realize that your ex really isn’t as special or unique as you imagined them to be. Remember, “love is blind” - dopamine and oxytocin warp your perceptions in a big way.
#2 - Eliminate "scarcity"
Your mind also keeps reminding you if it doesn’t see any other romantic “possibilities” in your world. Surround yourself with them. People you think are pretty cool, interesting, fun, or attractive… once your mind sees “possibilities” it will relax. When it sees no possibilities, it will panic- and that perception of scarcity will overwhelm you.
#3 - Find your own happiness, yourself
Go find what makes you happy- it is never about another person. It is about you organizing your life around the things and activities that you enjoy and value. I know, that might puzzle you until you find it but then you’ll go “oooh, THAT’S what Mike was talking about…” Others should add to your world, but not BE your world.
#4 - Get perspective. Your ex isn't perfect
It may also help you to write down a list of the qualities & things you feel about your ex- both PROS and CONS. The PROS are the things you appreciate, and desire in a partner- and the CONS are the things that weren’t ideal, or didn’t work for you at all. It depends on your experience, but this might help you get perspective.
No one is perfect, including your ex.
#5 - Learn as much as you can, about YOU
Throughout this experience, observe your mind, and your emotions, and learn how they work.
This feels like a very hard experience, but 99.9% of what makes it feel hard is the stuff that's going on inside your head, not outside in your world.
There’s a ton to learn about how your mind works, and the more you learn, the better. It will make your a better person, and it will make your next relationship 10x more awesome.
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