While breakups are never easy, it can be even harder to deal with the mess they leave behind. Based on the wisdom of Chinese astrology, here are six important things to avoid after the split so your situation doesn't become any muckier than it needs to be.
1. Communication with your ex.
Seems obvious, right? But, we often start calling, emailing or texting soon enough. Sometimes it's out of loneliness, or maybe things seem unfinished and we want to hash out the details -- again. Either way, don't do it. If you're a Rat, you might be more prone to pick up the phone (you love to talk); resist this urge. Rabbit also may feel the pangs of loneliness more than others. If you get the itch to dial, call your best friend -- or even the operator! -- instead.
2. Hanging onto romantic mementos.
Those ticket stubs from the baseball game you went to together last summer? His oversized college jersey you adopted as your loungewear? Toss it all! Pig in particular might become upset over getting rid of sentimental objects, but it's the only way to truly move on. You can't make room in your life for anyone new if you're hanging onto the old.
3. Going on a slew of immediate dates.
Your friends may tell you to "get back out there," but you're in no position to start dating until you've given yourself time to heal. If you're a Horse, you might jump the gun a bit and want to move on -- fast. But it will probably only be depressing and exhausting trying to juggle a new romantic interest while you're still getting over your ex.
4. Trash-talking your ex.
Yes, you might wish a horrible death on the person who broke your heart, but do your best to avoid telling anyone that. While you might feel strong negative emotions about your ex, gossip and trash-talking will only bite you back in the end. If you share the same friends, be careful about getting others to choose sides. Snake might find this difficult -- you slippery creatures sometimes act deviously without even knowing it. Rooster, too, might have a tough time keeping their opinions to themselves.
Whatever you do, don't hole yourself up alone at home every night. It's fine to take some time to deal with your feelings, but try to get out with friends and make an attempt to have fun on occasion. If you're a Tiger, use that boundless energy to try new things and socialize your pain away. Before you know it, you'll be out of your sweat pants and off the couch -- for good!
6. Beating yourself up.
Breakups are never a one-way street. Even if you were the one who caused the relationship to end, resist the temptation to blame yourself for the things you did wrong. Sensitive Dragon and fragile Rabbits have to be careful about falling into negative self-talk. If things were meant to work out, they would have; for now, just focus on yourself. Dwelling on your mistakes won't bring your ex back.