The end of a relationship is one of the most crippling losses we can suffer in a lifetime. Whether you’re trying to move on or still pining for your ex, the power of silence after a breakup can be your most potent tool. Yes, we can see how this may come across as somewhat paradoxical. All you want is one more glimpse of your ex, a chance to hold them and hear their voice one last time, and we’re saying, “Silence is powerful.”
A breakup results in a gaping void in your life, brought on by an integral part of your life being ripped out. This, in turn, leaves you hurting and overcome with a sense of longing. A longing for those good old days when you were smitten with each other. For the touch of your partner, the sound of their voice, the way their lips curl up a certain way when they smile.
Yet, here we are telling you that radio silence and no contact will get you through this heartache. Hear us out though. With expert insights from psychologist and counselor Juhi Pandey, who specializes in family therapy and mental health counseling, we’ll tell you how the power of no contact and silence works in post-breakup dynamics between exes to understand why this strategy works almost always.
Is Silence The Best Revenge After A Breakup?
To drive home the importance of silence after a breakup, let us lead with one of the most popular quotes on the power of silence by writer Elbert Hubbard, “He who does not understand your silence will probably not understand your words.” This pretty much sums up why the silent treatment after a breakup works wonders.
If you’ve decided to part ways, there are bound to have been differences, issues, and misunderstandings at play. When your words failed to resolve those issues while you were together, how can you expect a different outcome now? That’s why ceasing all communication and creating some distance is the best way to gain clarity on why things didn’t work out and what you want going forward.
The no-contact rule
Juhi says, “The no-contact rule is a must if you want to move ahead in your life. If going cold turkey is hard to deal with, you can start reducing communication gradually. Once it gets to a point where an ex’s presence or absence doesn’t affect you too much, you’ll have figured out how to get your power back from a man. That’s primarily what the no contact after breakup psychology boils down to.”
So, what is the no-contact rule? As the name suggests, it means cutting all contact with an ex after a breakup – this not only entails not meeting or coming face-to-face with your ex but also not talking to them, texting them, or engaging with them on social media as well as maintaining distance from mutual friends.
This is a time-tested technique to help you process your feelings, recover from a heartbreak, and decide your future course of action. For it to be effective, the no-contact rule must be practiced for at least 30 days. However, it’s totally up to you to extend it for as long as you need to heal. And even forever.
No contact vs radio silence
If you want to use the power of silence after a breakup to your advantage, it also helps to understand the no contact after breakup psychology and how it’s different from radio silence. Let’s begin by looking at the radio silence meaning – you go out of communication and are unreachable. In the context of a relationship, radio silence would mean that you not only snap all contact with your ex but also leave them unable to contact you.
So, when you block them on social media, messenger apps, and also their number, you’re practicing radio silence. On the other hand, if the lines of communication are open but you don’t initiate contact, it’s known as practicing no contact. Both can be used in conjunction to optimally use the power of silence after being dumped or dumping a partner.
Why Silence Is Powerful After Breakup
Going off the radar after a breakup can be one of the hardest things to do, especially in moments where it feels as if your heart will explode if you don’t hear their voice right this second. In such moments, you may find yourself wondering whether the “silence is powerful” notion holds water at all.
Well, to understand how silence helps you take power back from an ex, let’s consider the alternative. You are pining for an ex, you miss them, you want them back and you’d give anything to go back to the way things were. This desire can trigger desperation, and in your desperation, you may start inundating your ex with overtures they may not be ready for.
From drunk calling to a barrage of text messages, and cryptic or overly sentimental social media posts, you’re basically pleading with them, begging for their attention. This may make you come across as needy and pathetic, and your ex may lose any respect they have for you. Besides, if they don’t respond to your overtures, it can severely impact your confidence and self-esteem – in turn, impeding the healing process and also adversely affecting your future relationships.
On the other hand, the silent treatment after a breakup allows you to keep your self-respect and dignity intact. You may grapple with the crippling pain of heartbreak, but by not giving your ex a chance to show their indifference to your pain, you can avoid adding insult to injury. As a result, instead of wallowing in self-pity, you feel empowered and confident in your ability to move forward and live life on your terms.
Whether you want to put a relationship behind you or are hoping for a reconciliation, silence is the most powerful tool in your arsenal, for the following reasons:
- It helps you heal from the pain of the breakup
- It gives you time to reflect on your relationship issues and decide what you truly want, without being influenced by your ex’s opinion on the matter
- It gives your ex a chance to miss you
- It gives you both a chance to resolve negative feelings about the breakup and put them behind
- It makes your ex want to talk to you because if they do, it’s out of their free will and not under pressure
Related Reading: A Rundown On The No-Contact Rule Female Psychology
Power Of No Contact And Silence After Breakup
Disappearing after being dumped or ending a relationship can help give you time to introspect. Juhi says, “Silence is key after a breakup. Staying silent might be painful at the beginning but over time, it will make you feel more at peace and work wonders for your self-worth. When you’re feeling lonely after a breakup and have an urge to contact your ex, distract yourself and do something that makes you feel better. Watch a movie, occupy yourself. Gradually, you will begin to realize that you’re no longer constantly reminded of your ex by every little thing in your life, and that’s progress.”
Why is no contact and maintaining silence after a breakup so important? Simply because it’s better to be mysterious after a breakup than be clingy and beg an ex to take you back. Yes, following through with this resolve takes hard work and patience, but here is what it can help you achieve:
1. It puts you in a position of power
Why is silence so powerful after a breakup? Well, when you start talking to an ex immediately after a breakup, it is usually for two reasons – to let them know how distraught you are and convince them to give the relationship another chance or to show how unaffected you are. Either way, it makes you look desperate and weak. On the other hand, by maintaining no contact and absolute silence you can convey your indifference and neutrality more effectively.
Besides, the importance of silence after a breakup in helping you move on much faster cannot be stressed enough. If you truly want to leave the past behind and are convinced that you and your ex do not have a future together, going off the radar after a breakup can help you eliminate all the unnecessary drama and focus on your healing.
Moving on isn’t the only scenario where silence is powerful. It can also be just as effective in winning over an ex. Simply because ignoring a man after a breakup or cutting contact with a woman post-breakup, makes them wonder if you cared about the relationship as much as they thought. Or if you’re as affected by it as them. Not knowing drives them up the wall, and there’s a good chance they won’t be able to resist reaching out to you at some point. So, go ahead, give him radio silence, or give her the good old-fashioned silent treatment and let them come to you after a breakup.
Related Reading: 8 Benefits Of Silent Treatment And Why It’s Great For A Relationship
2. It shows how well you’re handling the breakup
Remember that episode of Friends where Rachel messes up a date and then goes on to drunk dial Ross to tell him she’s over him and has found closure? And remember how mortified she was watching Ross listen to that message? No good ever comes out of drunk dialing an ex and telling them how you’re over them.
No matter what you say, the fact that you reached out shows that you care. The same goes for drunk texts. You’ve basically transitioned from begging for attention in a relationship to begging for attention from an ex. This sends a message that they’re too important for you. Your ex may even start believing that you cannot function without them, and may start taking you for granted even more.
On the other hand, when you just go off the radar completely, your ability to handle a breakup well speaks for itself. So, brace yourself to walk away and make him miss you by practicing radio silence after a breakup, or make her wonder what you’re up to by cutting her out of your life. When a woman goes radio silent or a man follows no-contact after a breakup, it confuses and intrigues the other person. That’s arguably the best way to deal with the breakup.
3. It gives you time to reflect
The power of no contact and silent treatment is that it gives you time to reflect. Distance from an ex gives you an opportunity to introspect about what it is that you truly want. Do you really want to get back together with your ex or is it the familiarity of the relationship that is keeping you hooked?
Juhi says, “When you have time to reflect, you can think about situations that bothered you and examine their root cause. Ask yourself why things happened the way they did and what you could’ve done differently. You begin to see things more clearly. Maybe they were not the right person for you. Or perhaps, you need to work on yourself to be able to build a wholesome romantic relationship.” So, how does radio silence after a breakup work in this scenario? By creating enough time and distance to allow you to explore what happened and why from a fresh perspective.
4. Your ex seeks answers
The power of silence after a breakup, especially when you do it without a forewarning, is that you leave your ex with more questions than answers. This is especially true if you practice radio silence in a relationship after being dumped by the silent treatment. Where are you? What are you doing? Why haven’t you called? What does it mean?
Going silent or disappearing after being dumped keeps the dumper totally confused. It’s a way of counter-rejecting your ex that will make them lose any sense of power they thought they had. Even if your ex was the one who decided to part ways, your sudden absence is going to make them re-evaluate things as they stand. In short, cut him off, he will miss you. Or stop contacting her and she will realize your value in her life.
The power of silence after rejection, or even after you’ve pulled the plug on a relationship, rests solely in the fact that it inspires curiosity and intrigue. Your absence will stir up far more questions than constant badgering and making attempts to win over an ex. The quest for answers can make your ex realize your value in their life. Even if you regret breaking up and want to give the relationship another chance, let him come to you after a breakup, or let her make the first move.
Related Reading: 18 Proven Ways To Get Over Your Ex-Boyfriend And Find Happiness
How To Use The Power Of Silence After A Breakup – 3 Steps and 10 Tips
One thing is certain, both women and men respond to silence and distance with greater curiosity and interest in an ex than they do to constant overtures aimed at getting an ex back. Whether you want to get back together with an ex or snap the chord for good, you cannot overlook the power of silence after rejection or a breakup in achieving that goal. But how to use the power of silence after a breakup to make sure it has the desired effect? Here are three steps to bear in mind:
Step 1: The no-contact rule
You already understand why is silence so powerful after a breakup as well as the difference between radio silence and no contact. Now, let’s look at how you can implement the no-contact rule effectively. When one person decides to pull the plug on a relationship, the equation can not remain amicable. And both partners rarely decide to end a relationship at the same time and for the same reasons.
As a result, there are bound to be feelings of anger and hurt that can make you do some silly things post-breakup. To make sure you don’t end up saying or doing things you’d regret or come across as a needy and desperate person begging for attention, it’s vital that you cut all forms of contact with your ex. Here’s how:
1. Erase them from your phone
Delete their contact information from your phone and block their number (because chances are you remember their number, and in the throes of pain and longing, may just end up calling and texting them). When you block their number, that extra step of hitting unblock when trying to reach out to an ex can deter you from going through with it. Not to mention, doing so, eliminates the possibility of not being able to resist responding to their messages and calls.
2. Remove them from social media
To be able to tap into the power of silence after rejection or a breakup, the purge has to be absolute and complete. That means removing and blocking your ex on all social media platforms as well. Whether you were dumped by the silent treatment or have chosen to remain silent after ending a relationship, this step is a must, so that there is no scope for access that keeps alive your hopes of getting your ex back or resuming the relationship.
3. Keep your distance from mutual friends
Don’t ask mutual friends for updates on your ex’s life. It can seem like an easy way to stay tangentially connected to their life but it will only cause you more pain and hold you back from moving on. As far as possible, limit contact with mutual friends, avoid social situations where your ex may be present, and let them know you’re taking time to focus on healing and moving on.
4. Write down your thoughts
The urge to reach out to an ex is the strongest when you see, do, or experience something that instantly reminds you of them. Perhaps, you’re rewatching your favorite show and miss cuddling with them on the couch. Or a situation reminds you of an inside joke, filling you with an unshakable urge to send that “Wish you were” text. Or maybe, you’re grappling with questions like, “Will he come back after silent treatment?” “Does she miss me?” “When does a man start to miss you?” “Has she moved on already?” Well, whatever it is you’re feeling, write it down in a diary, instead of calling or texting your ex.
5. Avoid places where you can run into them
At least for the first 30 days – the most crucial phase of no contact – avoid places where you can run into your ex. Whether you’re trying to figure out how to get your power back from a man or a woman, or trying the radio silence routing to test the “cut him off, he will miss you” theory, it’s vital that you don’t come face to face with your ex until you feel like you have a strong grip on your emotions.
Related Reading: How To End A Relationship On Good Terms
Step 2: Limited contact
Once you’re confident that the no-contact period has served its purpose, you can resume limited contact with your ex. This means talking or texting once in a while. It is important that you can – and do – go without talking to them for days together. Otherwise, you risk falling back into your old patterns of feeling the need to share your life’s every tiny detail and new development with them.
All the hard work you had put into maintaining no contact goes to waste. The idea behind limited contact is to test the waters and see whether you can talk to your ex without turning into an emotionally fragile hot mess. Here’s how:
1. Treat them just the way you would anyone else
When you use the power of silence after being dumped or dumping someone the right way, talking to your ex won’t make you feel like someone is gnawing your guts out, and at the same time, the prospect of talking to them doesn’t light up your face, your day, your life. If this is where you’re at when you end the radio silence after a breakup and move to limited contact, you will naturally feel ambivalent about being in touch with your ex. Treating them as you would any acquaintance or friend shouldn’t be hard, and that’s what you should do.
2. Be normal if you run into them
If you’re able to achieve closure with your ex after an appropriate time of no contact, it will result in more holistic healing and allow you to move toward limited contact more organically. Even so, it may not be easy to meet them in person. Should that happen, maintain your composure and behave normally.
- No running or hiding from them
- No going out of your way to avoid them or spend time with them
- No telling them how you’re over them or how badly you want your ex back
- Exchange pleasantries, engage in some small talk, and move on, unfazed
Step 3: Communication and withdrawal
Once you get past step 2, it is safe to assume that you’ve reached a place where you can share a space and have a conversation with an ex without it bringing back all those post-breakup feelings. You can now use the power of silence after a breakup to create positive communication.
Now that enough time has passed, negative feelings on both sides ought to have subsided, you can build upon the positive, friendly feelings you experience when talking to an ex after a long spell of silence by keeping things cordial and alternating communication and withdrawal. Here’s how:
1. Intermittent contact
Let’s say you have a longish phone conversation and you both hang up happy and content. At this point, you must withhold communication for some time. Now that you know exactly why the silent treatment works with an ex, use this knowledge to your advantage by strategically opening the lines of communication for small doses of interaction and then pulling back. When talking to someone – even if they’re your ex – feels good, people tend to keep going back for more. But this can be a slippery slope that can make you fall back into old patterns. Avoid it.
2. Don’t rake up old issues
Once you start talking, make sure you don’t rake up old issues and complaints. Reopening old wounds can cause the situation to spiral out of control pretty quickly. All the progress you’ve made so far can come undone. Instead, focus on having a good time and enjoying each other’s company, so that when you withdraw communication, you leave a bitter-sweet aftertaste, leaving your ex wanting more.
3. Reconcile or move on – Time to make a choice
If you’re wondering, when does a man start to miss you after a breakup or when does a woman start regretting a breakup, right about now is your answer. The positive, feel-good communication will certainly make you both look forward to more. This can fire up the longing and open up the door to reconciliation. If that’s something you’re both open to, now is the time to decide how you want to handle your relationship 2.0. If you’ve both moved on and agree that you aren’t a good fit as romantic partners, this could be the beginning of a strong, wholesome platonic relationship.
Related Reading: 7 Reasons Your Ex Is Hot And Cold – And How To Deal With It
What Does The Power Of Silence After A Breakup Achieve?
Now, that you have successfully applied the power of silence after a breakup, what next? The question to that answer depends on what you want. Once you have established positive communication using silence after a breakup, the likelihood of your ex rethinking their decision is very high.
Your absence, and then strategic presence, is bound to make them see you in a new light. If you started using the silent treatment and power of no contact as a means to win them over again, this is where you can take that leap. However, starting over a relationship isn’t a decision that should be made lightly. Make sure you and your ex weigh and discuss all the pros and cons before making a decision and do not get swept up in the spate of emotion brought on by the power of silence.
“Sometimes, people set out with an objective to patch things up with an ex but the no-contact period makes them realize that it’s not the best course of action. If that’s where you’re at, allow yourself to move on guilt-free,” Juhi advises. Even if you decide not to get back together, using silence after a breakup helps you to maintain a cordial relationship with an ex. Or at least, view them in a positive light, allowing you to look back at your relationship without grudges or malice.
- Silence after a breakup is a powerful tool to get over the pain of heartbreak, build your self-esteem, and gain perspective of what you want
- Snapping contact with an ex puts in a position of power, gives you space to introspect, and leaves you ex searching for answers
- No contact, limited contact, communication and withdrawal are the three key steps for tapping into the power of silence to deal with end of a relationship
- This phase will give you clarity on whether you want to give your ex another chance or move on and focus on possibilities of future relationships
The real power of silence after a breakup is that it sets you free from your fears, inhibitions, and dependence on another person. What you choose to do with that freedom is up to you. To get the most out of going off the radar after a breakup, it’s vital that you start this process with a preset notion of the outcome. Just take things one step at a time, and see where the path leads you.
After being dumped, if you are being silent, that’s the best revenge because the person who has dumped you will keep wondering about your radio silence and will not be able to make out if the breakup affected you at all.
If you realize the importance of silence after a breakup you can move on much faster. On the other hand, by maintaining no contact and absolute silence you can convey your indifference and neutrality more effectively.
Once you maintain radio silence at your end your ex might keep making attempts to contact you or find out from friends how you are doing. They might text you or even try to make you jealous by saying they are seeing someone else. These are sure-shot signs your ex is not over you.
Even though it depends on your goal, you must use radio silence for at least 30 days. If you’re looking to move on and never look back, you can use radio silence for however long you want, since you don’t have to talk to your ex again.
If you want the power of silence after a breakup to help you get things back, using it for a minimum of 30 days is a good start.