Breakups suck ­– period; end of story. They are one of those uniting painful forces in the world that most everybody has gone through or likely will go through. They’re horrible when we’re in the thick of them, and they don’t get any easier as the years go by.

A lot of the time, our own post-breakup reactions and behaviors are what make moving on so difficult. After ending a relationship or being broken up with, we are often so high on revenge, mourning, self-pity, depression, anger, resentment – you name it – that we let our unstable emotions and behaviors get the best of us. It’s normal to experience a few missteps in the midst of mourning a breakup. There are, however, certain acts that should be avoided at all times when trying to healthfully recover from a breakup. In order to keep your emotional stability intact, these three acts are best avoided when trying to move past a former love interest.

Sex with the Ex

One of the greatest things about having a steady boyfriend or girlfriend is knowing you have sex at your disposal. Keep in mind though that sex is a tricky, mysterious act. A lot of us believe we can view the act as purely physical if need be, but most of us have sex with emotion, especially when it’s with a boyfriend or girlfriend.  So stop having sex with your ex the moment your relationship ends if you want to authentically move on. Yes, it’s going to suck not having sex. And, yes, you may even be able to convince yourself that you’ll only have it just this one time, but be fair to yourself and your partner. Sex shouldn’t be underestimated or treated as a purely physical act. If you get in too deep, you may find yourself immensely heartbroken when you discover you aren’t the only person your former lover is having sex with. You may not think it can happen, but it most certainly can. So do yourself a favor and don’t have sex with that ex.

Communicate with the Ex

There should always be an extended period of time in place in which you do not communicate with your ex. I know it sounds a little extreme, but trust me, it’s important to not be in contact with your ex for at least one to two months while you get your own life back on track. You may think it’s possible to transition into a friendship right away, but it’s almost impossible to do in a healthy manner. If you’ve been in a relationship for any period of time, you’ve inevitably established patterns of behavior that were different from when you were single, so you need to figure out who you are alone once more; therefore, take a few months to rediscover your single-self. It may seem scary at first to go out to lunch alone, sleep alone, and feel secure alone, but it can turn into a rather riveting experience. Try and see it as a time to pamper yourself. Start doing things you always wanted to do that you didn’t have time for when you were in a relationship. Perhaps start training for a marathon, eating healthier, learning how to sew, waking up earlier, or reading more. If you see a nice outfit you want, buy it. If you want to get a massage, get one. Whatever it is, take a few months to rediscover yourself and all that encompasses you and what makes you happiest.

Try to Dive back into the Dating Scene

Following my first big breakup, I decided to join Match.com. At first I was so convinced that it was a good idea. After getting out of my toxic three-year relationship, I thought I deserved to find someone who was better for me. “I’m moving on,” I remember justifying to myself and friends. I, in fact, had no business dating right out of a relationship. I had a lot of emotions swirling around that I hadn’t resolved, and I was still very much in love with my ex. I should have taken the time to mourn, rediscover myself, and then slowly return to the dating scene. It’s normal for a person that is used to dating and being in a relationship to want to envelope themselves in another attachment, but it’s not healthy at all. If you want to find a fantastic partner and cultivate a loving relationship, then put the brakes on trying to get back out there for a while. Believe me, there will be plenty of people waiting for you when you’re ready to return to the dating game, and if you do the recovery work required, you’ll be stable, healthy, and committed enough to handle a great partner when you find them.

It’s never fun to have to let go of a former boyfriend or girlfriend, but it’s just another part of life. If you do all that you can to appropriately mourn your former lover and make sure to avoid these three behaviors, you’ll rediscover how great it is to be single once more.

This is a guest post by freelance writer and blogger Nadia Jones. Nadia enjoys sharing her knowledge on topics of education and higher learning. She offers online college advice and guidance to readers throughout the blogosphere. Reach her at nadia.jones5@gmail.com.