5 signs it’s time to unfollow your ex on social media | Mitzi Bockman


Have you spent a lot of time since your breakup watching them via social media, wondering what they’re doing and who they’re doing it with?

You probably know this isn’t a healthy thing to do, but you’re wondering when is the best time to unfollow. You don’t want to be seen as having a temper tantrum and not following through to make a point, but if you hang on for too long it can be unhealthy and even obsessive.

Luckily, there are signs you can look for that indicate the time has come for you to let go and move on.

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5 signs it’s a good time to unfollow your ex on social media.

1. It interferes with your life.

Do you find that you are making choices about your day because you are harassing your ex on social media?

Are you invited to the cinema but decline because you don’t want to risk not being there if they contact you? Do you keep your phone handy at all times so you can check every alert that sounds? Do you stay up too late, scanning social media, desperate for just a whiff of what they’re up to?

If you answered yes to any of the questions above, or something similar, then following your ex on social media has an unhealthy influence on your life, one that could profoundly affect your present and your future.

As I was writing this article, I decided to check up on an ex (from 5 years ago) and see what he was up to. And that put me on a downward spiral. We had some unfinished business that I pretty much learned to accept, but watching him live his life drove me crazy. And it practically destroyed my beautiful summer day.

So if you notice that your time on social media is starting to affect the quality of your life, it’s time to stop following your ex.

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2. It keeps you from moving forward.

I have a client who broke up with her boyfriend of 8 years. She didn’t want to but she knew the relationship was going nowhere no matter how hard she tried. They broke up, she moved out, and she was ready to move on with her life.

Unfortunately, she couldn’t resist the temptation to continue following him on social media. And what she saw was BAD.

Within weeks, he began dating a friend of his sister’s. This friend was very active on social media so there were pictures of them everywhere. Then she found out he was moving to Texas, then she found out they were pregnant.

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And, with each news, she was devastated.

My client was trying to move on. She was going out, being active and traveling, but she wasn’t going anywhere. Her obsession with her ex was interfering with her ability to let him go, move on, and live a good life. She was so busy seeing her life change that she forgot to change hers.

Are your interactions with your ex preventing you from moving on? Are you dating, but only halfway? Does every time you see something about them on social media you go into a spin?

Back then, before social media, when a relationship was over, it was over. You could physically stalk your person, but it was dangerous, so with time and space, we forgot about our ex and moved on. Things aren’t like that anymore.

So, pay attention to whether stalking your ex on social media is holding you back. If so, it’s time to unfollow them.

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3. It affects your mental health.

Breakups are horrible. Social media gives us FOMO. The combination of the two things can only lead to one thing: depression.

I am 57 years old and every time I go on Instagram I feel depressed, for various reasons. As a result, I quit Instagram. I know if I was on Instagram and saw everything my ex did, I would be obsessed with questioning it. Wondering how he could have taken care of me if he had moved on so quickly. I would feel less than and wonder if I would ever love or feel loved again.

I know these feelings would lead to feelings of hopelessness which is the hallmark of depression. And, for me, once I’m depressed, I have a really hard time getting out of it.

So, how about you? Do you wonder who you are in the world? Do you feel unlovable? Are you consumed with FOMO? Do you believe that no one will ever love you again? Are you starting to isolate yourself or is your work affected?

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If you answered YES to any of these questions, you’re probably depressed and it might be time to seek help. At the very least, if you’re feeling down, it’s definitely a sign that it’s time to unfollow your ex on social media.

4. You find it a habit rather than a need.

So it’s tricky.

When we break up with someone, stalking them on social media is not unusual.

We’re on our phones all day anyway, so why not just see what they’re up to. So we do it. Regularly.

Over time, however, sometimes the qualms about checking in on what your ex is doing on social media become more of a habit than a need. And that’s a habit you might not have noticed or a habit that might be hard to break.

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A lot of people have a routine on social media. They pick up their phones before getting out of bed and check Instagram and TikTok. They check again at breakfast, on the way to work, etc. And most people have a sequence they use to check things out. And checking up on their ex is one of those things they check out.

So ask yourself. Do you really want to keep checking on your ex or is it just part of your social media habit? You may not really care what they have to do, but you do, like you check your horoscope and the weather every morning?

If the answer to the above question is yes, then checking up on your ex on social media is a habit, not a necessity.

And the easiest way to break this habit is to unfollow them on social media!

Do it now! Break the habit! Watch some cute puppy videos instead!

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5. You have too much to do.

That’s the goal after a breakup. That we start living our lives to the fullest, traveling, working, spending time with friends and family, and maybe even dating again. And, as our lives become more and more full, there is no longer any space in them to waste even a moment with our ex.

I hope you have now arrived at this place, where you live your life fully, without being held back by the past. Even if you don’t feel like you’re reaching your full potential, you know you’re trying hard every day.

I know that after my breakups, the best way to move on was to live — to travel, start my business, spend time with my kids, and meet new people. And while I was still on social media, I knew that the time I was spending watching my ex was wasted time, time I could spend building the life I wanted.

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As you can see, there are many signs that it’s time to unfollow your ex on social media.

As a life coach, unfollowing your ex on social media is something I recommend doing right after a breakup. Going “contactless” is the best way to move forward. Every day that you don’t know anything about them or their lives, you are one day closer to healing.

That being said, I know this is very difficult for some people. And I guess it might have been difficult for you since you read this article.

I encourage you 100% to agree to unfollow your ex on social media NOW. Life is too short, there is too much fun to be had and love to be found to waste even more minutes with an ex.

After all, your ex is your ex for a reason — the relationship just wasn’t working out.

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Mitzi Bockmann is a certified life coach and mental health advocate based in New York City. She works with all kinds of people to help them move from depressed and overwhelmed to confident and happy in their relationships and in their world.

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