Spring Cleaning Your Love Life

How to clear out those dusty old habits that are messing up your happiness.

As we get ready for the warmer months by cleaning out our closets, and happily discarding those horrid cargo pants, we need to also use the same critical eye when assessing our relationships. Staying with the same person can be your go-to move because it’s scary to look for someone new. What if you’re alone for a while or you never fall in love again? Is it worth staying in a rut?

The answer: Absolutely not. If you think you are with the wrong companion, now is the time to make a change and clean up your love life. Here’s how.

First, prepare yourself for singlehood. Re-engage with your friends. Yes, we all say we won’t get stuck in a relationship and blow off our friends … but guess what? We do! Make plans with the oldies but goodies in your life, and put the dates down far in advance so that you’re not thinking about the ex while staring at an empty calendar.

Make a game plan for yourself. This is not a time to hibernate. Just like when you spruce up your closet, you need to indulge yourself in a bit of something new, too. Whether that indulgence is a new fitness routine, a new makeover or an up-to-date hairstyle, it’s important to take the time to look and feel your best so you can get back in the swing of things with a positive outlook.

Although you may have a great group of friends who mean well, make a pact that bringing up the ex is not permitted. Of course, deep inside we want to know what she is up to, but this info will only bring you down. What you should be doing is enlisting the help of friends, co-workers, family members or a professional to help find your future love. Don’t be shy about letting your social circle know that you are single and looking to meet someone. People love to play matchmaker—give those around you a homework assignment to help you find the one.

It’s time for a clean slate. If it’s too tempting to try to see what the ex is up to, then unfriend him on Facebook, and delete the number from your list of contacts.Take down old pictures and throw out the birthday and valentine cards that you’ve saved. No stopping by your favorite coffee shop or park bench in hopes of running into him. Looking in the rearview mirror will make moving on almost impossible.

Think of new hangouts. Pick at least two or three new places to go. Gone are the same old restaurants and movie theaters. Be creative in your approach. Try a new gym, take a class you have been interested in, or join a charitable group to meet like minded people.

If you are in a fulfilling relationship with longterm potential, then by all means stay put—but don’t hang on for comfort or warmth. Winter is over, so if the feelings are thawing with your partner, take charge of your love life, clean house and spring into the sunny days ahead.