Everything You Need To Know About The No Contact Rule (The Ultimate Guide) (2023)

The no contact rule is something most people use, whether they want to get over their ex or to get them back.

In this complete guide to the no contact rule, you’ll learn everything about it, including what the no contact rule is and whether the no contact rule works.

No contact after a break-up is a wise idea, and you can even use the no contact rule to get him back. Use the no contact rule for a guy you have broken up with, whether you want to move on or not.

What to do during no contact? What to do after no contact? You have a lot of questions, and I’m here to answer all of them.

What if my ex contacts me during the no contact rule? One whole part of this guide is dedicated to that question, so don’t worry.

How long does the no contact rule last? You’re going to learn how to make the best of that time, without looking desperate.

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No contact with your ex is a rule, and it’s a rule for a good reason. When people break up, they need time to heal and process everything that has happened.

I know that you’re wondering whether you should text your ex, but stick to the no contact rule for now.

My ex wanted to be friends after no contact, even though he was mad at me after the break-up. All he needed was some time to think things through and process everything.

When an ex wants to be friends after no contact, it’s easy to turn that friendship into something more.

How long does the no contact rule last? Well, it’s called the 30-day no contact rule, but some people need more time.

Read on because you’ll discover everything that you need to know about the no contact rule.

Contents show

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Break-ups are tough. You thought you had something special, but now all that’s left is an empty space in your heart where your ex used to be.

It hurts and confuses you, because you want to have him back and move on at the same time.

You have to understand that your pain isn’t going to go away if you contact him. In fact, it could only make things even worse.

The solution is in the no contact rule that prevents you from making things worse and opens up a lot of possibilities in the future. Whether you want your ex back or not, you need to end all communication with him.

Follow the no contact rule because it works! That is why it’s so popular, and I’m sure you’ve already heard about it.

A lot of women who had no contact with an ex after a break-up got him back!

Your ex is like a drug to you, and his message is your fix that makes you feel good for a little while. Then you feel miserable again until you get your hands on another fix, another message…

The best way to quit this addiction is to put an end to your supplies by stopping all contact with him. It’s the only way for you to have the time to detox from everything.

If you keep him around, you’ll never be able to move on, nor will you be able to make it work this time around.

The reasons for your break-up are still there, and if you simply get back together, you’ll break-up again. You’ll end up being stuck in an infinite cycle of an on and off relationship.

Do you really want to waste all that time? Why, when there’s a better solution?

The no contact rule is there to give you clarity and perspective, and by gaining that, you gain power. You’ll have the power to choose what’s right for you.

So, maybe you’ll get back together with your ex, maybe you won’t… Still, you most likely won’t unless you first have no contact with your ex.

What is the no contact rule?

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Simply put, it’s called the 30-day no contact rule because you aren’t supposed to communicate with your ex for four weeks…

That means stopping all communication whatsoever, including texts, calls, and visiting them. You shouldn’t even ‘accidentally’ bump into them or use social media or a mutual friend to reach them.

So, what is the no contact rule? As the name itself says, it’s the rule that says you’re not allowed to contact your ex in any way for 30 days.

Apply the no contact rule to guys you break up with, and you’ll see that they’ll want you back, and you’ll move on.

As I said earlier, no contact with your ex is like quitting an addiction, and I do mean quitting cold turkey. That means that even the smallest ‘dose’ of your ex isn’t allowed to enter your system.

So, until the 30-day no contact rule is over, you shouldn’t contact your ex, no matter how tempting it is. Not only will it prevent you from making things worse and give you some perspective, but it will also preserve your dignity.

If you choose to contact them now, you’ll only seem desperate and needy, and we all know that that isn’t attractive. So, if you want your ex back, have no contact after the break-up.

But what to do during no contact? Here are some dos and don’ts for when you apply the no contact rule.

1. Take care of yourself

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It’s time for you to really start living your life. What makes you feel better? Do all those things!

Start being your own best friend and take care of yourself.

You want to be a confident and happy person, and you can become one! Realize that you don’t need anyone to make you happy, especially not your ex.

You don’t need your ex at all. Maybe you want them, but you don’t need them, so don’t try to convince yourself otherwise.

Watching TV and eating ice cream is okay for the first few days after a break-up, but it won’t lead you anywhere. You need to get up off that couch and start living your life!

You don’t know what to do? Let me help you with some advice that will surely make a difference.

2. Start moving your body

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You might not like this, but physical activity can be a great cure for a broken heart. After all, you want to get those endorphins running so you will feel better.

Imagine yourself being in the best possible shape you always dreamed of. If that’s not a way to get your ex back or get any man, I don’t know what is.

Just imagine the look on his face when he sees you after the no contact rule, looking better than ever!

Make time every other day for the physical activity of your choice. You can hit the gym or start doing yoga; any type of sport will work, and you can even start jogging.

It will make you feel a lot better, and it will show on your face. I’m not a big fan of sport, but I discovered that I really enjoy dance fitness, so that’s another thing you can try.

3. Have a wonderful time with your friends

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I know how you feel right now. You can’t even get yourself to leave your house because it feels right sitting alone and feeling miserable.

Force yourself if you have to, but go out with your friends and have a great time! Spend some time with your loved ones, and I’m sure they’ll succeed in making you feel better.

Be grateful for having amazing friends or family members who will always be there for you and appreciate the time you spend with them.

Social activities will help you feel alive again, so don’t miss a chance to go out there and socialize.

Do you think that you could go on a date or a few? It’s not only allowed during the no contact rule but is also encouraged!

You could use the ego boost that dating will give you, even if you aren’t ready for a new relationship. It will also remind you that there are plenty of fish in the sea, and you’ll forget about your ex at least for a little while.

Still, I have to warn you that those who obsess over their ex constantly often compare their dates to their ex, and it makes them miss their ex even more so don’t start dating yet if you’re obsessing too much over your ex. Spend time with those you care about and let them cheer you up.

When you’re not obsessed with getting back together with your ex, you can start dating!

4. Reward yourself with relaxation

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Another thing you need to do during the no contact period is something relaxing. What you’re going through isn’t easy, and you’re doing your best to deal with it so reward yourself!

Do something relaxing; for instance, yoga is one idea that also serves as a physical activity.

Have you ever tried meditation? It could really help you during this tough time when you’re trying to put yourself back together.

You can meditate for ten minutes each day, and it will do wonders for you. Just play some meditation music and close your eyes, or you can try a guided meditation.

When was the last time you went to a spa? This is another great relaxing activity that will make you forget about your ex.

Talk to your girlfriends and arrange a visit to a spa. You’ll enjoy spending time with your best friends while being pampered.

Could there be a better way to relax? Well, maybe there is…

How would you feel about a nice, long massage? Whenever you feel like you simply can’t take it anymore, call your best friend and go for a massage.

If that’s not an option, you can always draw yourself a nice, warm, relaxing bath. Put on a face mask, light some scented candles, and enjoy some me time.

5. Stop obsessing over your ex

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Obsessing over your ex will only drive you crazy, and you won’t achieve anything.

Of course, you’re going to think of him every now and then, but refreshing his Facebook page over and over again won’t get you anywhere.

Ask yourself why you’re obsessing over your ex and what can happen if you keep doing so.

Your ex might start missing you during this time and even contact you. Still, they will see your neediness, and it will be clear to them that you have been obsessing over them and it will make them lose the attraction they felt during this time.

Does no contact rule work? It does, but it also depends on you.

You need to use this time to stop the addiction you have, as we talked about earlier. Going cold turkey is your only chance to succeed.

If you can’t resist checking his Facebook page every day, you must make it impossible for you to do so. That little dose of your ex will prevent you from moving on or getting him back so remove him from your Facebook page, or even block him.

If that’s too hard to do, deactivate your Facebook account for at least a month.

6. Don’t turn to alcohol or drugs

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Some people use alcohol or drugs to cover up their pain, but that’s really the wrong way to do it. It doesn’t heal you, and it can make things even worse in the long run.

Of course, that doesn’t mean that you can’t have a drink every once in a while. Just don’t think that alcohol is a solution, because it really isn’t.

Don’t make a habit out of drinking, because this is the time you should use for creating healthy habits. After all, your ex won’t want you back if you are a drunk or, even worse, a junkie.

It’s enough that you’re addicted to your ex, you don’t need another addiction. It’s hard enough to beat the one you already have, isn’t it?

No one wants a partner who is an addict, so don’t be one.

Another important thing I need to mention here is that you’re probably going to get drunk with your friends at least once during this time. During that time, it’s important to give your friends your phone, so that you don’t call your ex.

You don’t want to make a fool of yourself, do you? So whenever you go out drinking, make sure you can’t call or text your ex once you’re drunk.

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Are you asking yourself if the no contact rule works? Let me say it simply and truly – the no contact rule works.

There are a few reasons why it always works, and if you’re not convinced yet, be sure to read them.

1. It gives you the time and space you need to detox

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A break-up is an emotional experience, and you need to detox from all of it. You need to experience what you’re feeling, mourn, and just be alone.

It is a process you need to go through, and you don’t need your ex interrupting you. If he keeps disappearing from and reappearing in your life, it will only mess with your mind.

He might not want to intentionally mess with your head, but he will, and you don’t need that.

Maybe he misses you and just wants to know that you’re okay but if you engage with him, you definitely won’t be. It’s a process, and you need some time to get through it by yourself.

2. It gives you perspective

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It’s not possible to be objective when there are feelings involved. You need those feelings to be in order before you can see everything clearly, the way they are and just a little distance could be your way of figuring out what went wrong.

There are usually two reasons for a break-up – a surface reason is one of them and another is the real reason.

You can’t see things clearly overnight, because your relationship happened over time as well. There are a lot of problems, negativity, and resentment that need to start unraveling.

Did you break up because of a big fight you had? Well, I can’t tell you with certainty that you didn’t.

A lot of things were happening beneath the surface, and it caused your relationship to disintegrate. It only manifested as big fights that caused you to break up.

You can’t even realize these underlying issues until you take a step back and look from a distance after some time. Distance is the key to being objective.

Let’s not forget that you can’t be objective when you are very emotional, like you are now, so give yourself some time to gain perspective.

3. It helps you move on

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They say time heals all wounds, but it’s only the combination of space and time that heals. If you keep seeing your ex, time won’t magically make everything better.

This rule gives you enough time to grieve and go through all the stages of the break-up. It’s an essential part of the healing process.

There’s no way you’ll ever move on if he’s still in your life as you’ll just focus on how much you want him back. What you should be asking yourself instead is whether he’s the right man for you in the first place.

This period lets you think about all those things you haven’t even considered so don’t be surprised if you discover something you didn’t expect. Maybe you’ll even see that you’re much happier without him, and feel like you can finally be yourself.

Your feelings for him will never go away if he doesn’t go away so this is the time you need to get over him, and that’s the point of it all, even if you want to get him back.

It’s important not to care that much about getting him back, and this is what could bring him back! It’s funny, but that’s how it works.

You need to move on right now, and later, if you still want him back, you’ll have a better chance of getting him back.

4. It makes you see that there are a lot of guys out there

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Your ex was actually blocking the view, and now that he’s out of the picture, you’ll see a lot of guys. It will open your eyes to the opportunities you never realized were there.

Maybe you aren’t ready to date yet, but you’ll at least be able to see what is out there. You could get excited about the idea of dating someone new when at first, you couldn’t have pictured it.

Maybe you’ll even end up in a healthier and happier relationship, but you needed to get away from your ex to realize it.

I’ll tell you what happened to me. I was with a toxic partner, but I couldn’t stop loving him and even when we broke up, I wanted him back so we broke up and got back together who knows how many times.

One day, I said no more, and since we always got back together soon after we broke up, I said it was time for the no contact period.

It was tempting to text him, but I had to stick to the decision that I wouldn’t for at least 30 days. Those 30 days felt like forever, but they gave me a chance to meet new people.

I realized that there were plenty of men out there, and I could find my real soulmate. Yes, I found him, but a year later.

I didn’t want to settle for anything less than my soulmate, but I met some great guys during those 30 days and it made me realize that my ex wasn’t the only person in the world for me.

5. It saves you from an on and off relationship

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Maybe you don’t think that it’s such a big deal if you meet your ex for just one drink but don’t make that mistake.

It can get you into the trap of an on and off relationship, which is exactly what I had with my toxic ex before I finally stopped the cycle.

As I mentioned, we were in a relationship that had too many break-ups to count and we would always get back together just a few days later.

It drove me crazy. We never resolved any issues, and we just kept repeating the same toxic patterns. If only I had realized sooner that I needed a permanent break, it would have saved me years of trouble.

You need it too, and you need time to process everything. You have to move on and even if you want him back, you’ll be making a mistake if you agree to meet him during this period.

You’ll either get stuck in an on and off relationship cycle, or he won’t want you back because you seem needy and desperate. You need to heal yourself, and it will increase your odds of getting him back if you still want him then.

Let’s face it; if the relationship didn’t work out the first time, it’s not going to the second time unless something changes.

Significant change takes work, and it takes time. Missing them is hard, but it doesn’t mean that your relationship is going to last.

6. It lets you put yourself back together

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This period gives you a chance to start putting yourself back together. You need time to figure out who you are without them, who you were before them, and who you will be.

We lose ourself in a relationship, especially if it’s a toxic one. All those highs and lows you experienced had an effect on you, and so did the break-ups and make-ups.

The break-up probably didn’t happen all of a sudden, so things weren’t good for a while and therefore, you felt bad for some time. Contact with him now would be like rubbing salt into the wound.

There’s another relationship that needs your attention, and it is the one you have with yourself. Spend some time working on it.

Once you have a successful relationship with yourself, you’ll be able to have them with others. If you stay in touch with your ex, that won’t happen.

7. It reminds you that you can live without your ex

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Trust me, I’m familiar with the feeling you’re experiencing. You feel like you can’t live without him.

It’s like he is the oxygen that you breathe. Trust me once again; you can live without him, and you can, in fact, live an even happier life.

Experiencing life without him for at least 30 days will show you that you won’t cease to exist. It will show you that you can smile without him.

The first few days will be hard, but with time, it will get easier to live without him. You’ll see that you can feel good without your ex.

I had this problem, and I have to admit that those 30 days were like a training period for my life without him. It made me get used to the idea, even though I didn’t want to live without him.

Also, you should know that life can be magical, and your luck can turn in the blink of an eye. It may feel like an eternity, but what’s meant to be yours will always come to you.

I never knew I could be as happy as I am, but life is long, and it’s a journey that’s full of surprises. One storm is nothing compared to the sunshine of a bright future once it passes.

8. It helps when you don’t know what he’s doing

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Just imagine if you don’t listen to my advice, and contact your ex, just to find out that he’s seeing someone else. That would really hurt, right?

The no contact period prevents you from knowing what’s going on with him, and it’s sometimes best that way.

Let’s not forget that this rule implies that you don’t look at his social media profiles so you won’t know anything about his life during the 30 days, unless you break the rule. I’m reminding you not to because you might not like what you’ll see.

You don’t want to see pictures of him with other girls, even if you know that he isn’t right for you. In fact, he might be purposely posting things to make you jealous and you don’t want to go through that sort of agony.

For these 30 days, he doesn’t exist in your world and that implies that you don’t know anything about his, and you shouldn’t even care. Try not to think about it and do some of the things I mentioned earlier that you can do during this period.

9. It makes it possible for him to miss you

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This period is all about you learning to love yourself again, but a nice perk is that it gives your ex space to start missing you.

It’s not a method to get your ex back, even though it can work but only if you work on yourself during that period so it’s important that your motivation isn’t to get him back but to gain the benefits of this period.

I mentioned before that your relationship can only be successful if something changes. That change should start with you so work on yourself, and you’ll soon learn what to do after no contact.

How long does the no contact rule last?

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You already know about the 30 days, but it’s important to really answer the question of how long the no contact rule lasts.

The thing is, not everyone needs the same amount of time but mostly, things settle down in around four weeks.

However, if you’re brokenhearted, you might need more time. It’s crucial to take time, as much as you need.

Was he the one who broke up with you? Then you don’t owe your ex anything but you owe yourself time to work on yourself and make yourself feel better.

It’s tempting to put him in his place, but you shouldn’t do it. Do things that feel good for you, not those that feel painful.

Don’t rush to call him after the 30 days either. If you need more time, take more time.

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If you want your ex back, some will advise you to stop communication for 30 days, and then contact him. I’m telling you to wait even longer if you have to.

The point is that after those 30 days, you should wait for your ex to contact you. It has no point if you waited 30 days and then desperately called your ex begging him to come back.

Don’t make your ex certain that he didn’t really lose you when the two of you broke up. It’s important that he gets the idea to contact you so he needs to be the one who reaches out if you want to do everything right.

Don’t let your ex think that he can do whatever he wants, break up with you, and have you come crawling back. It won’t make him feel attracted to you, and he’ll instead feel sorry for you.

This is why I had to say again that it might take more than 30 days to get your ex back if that’s what you want. It’s called the 30-day rule, but for the best effect, you need to wait for him to be the one to contact you.

Whatever you do, don’t contact him for 30 days… But what if he contacts you before the 30 days are over?

What if my ex contacts me during the no contact period?

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You haven’t broken the rule if he contacts you in any way but you are breaking it if you respond.

If your ex reaches out to you during this period, just don’t text him back, don’t respond.

Of course, if there’s some sort of emergency, you can talk to him, but only about that. There’s no need to discuss anything else right now.

Otherwise, if he calls you, don’t pick up, or if he texts you, don’t text back.

As for social media, it’s always smart to block him just in case, and so that you don’t see what he posts, which we covered earlier.

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What to do after the 30-day no contact period? This is the time when you can finally contact your ex if you still want to, by sending him a message.

Send something with no pressure and which is non-threatening because you want to make your ex respond.

Try sending something that is positive, fun, and interesting. Don’t mention the break-up, don’t say you miss him and don’t say you want to get back together.

Your message should be focused on interests or hobbies and you can mention things that he likes.

What to do after the 30-day no contact rule? Send a message if you want to and wait for his response.

There are four ways this could play out:

1. A positive response

One option is that you get a positive response from your ex, something like, “That’s great!” or, “It’s great to hear from you.”

If you get a response like this, wait for three days to start another conversation; as in, from the first message you sent, wait three days to initiate another text conversation.

This will make him wonder whether you will text again, and will give him the time to initiate a conversation.

Don’t go crazy over texting because it will make him think that you broke up for a good reason.

If a few days have passed, and he hasn’t initiated a conversation, you can start another if you want to because what matters most is that you’re the one who always ends the conversation.

2. A neutral response

He might be curious enough to respond, but not excited enough to give you a positive response and this is when he’ll give you a neutral response.

Maybe he’s just nervous because you hadn’t reached out for 30 days, and it surprised him so he might not know how else to reply than with just, “Cool,” “Okay,” or, “Thanks.”

You expected more, but it’s not a bad response. Still, it shows that you shouldn’t push it.

Don’t text back when you get a neutral response! I mentioned before that you should be the one who ends the conversation because it gives you the power and a neutral response is a sign that the conversation has to end.

If you keep texting him, he will be the one who ends the conversation. When this happens, you should wait for five or six days before you text him again.

3. A negative response

It’s never pleasant to receive a negative response, but it doesn’t mean that everything’s doomed; it just shows that he isn’t ready to start communicating yet and needs more time to heal.

A negative response could be something like, “It’s over!” “Leave me alone,” or, “I’m seeing someone.”

The best way to respond is if you write something like, “You are upset, and I understand that, so I’ll let you be, but I hope you’re doing well.”

This type of response demands that you wait from two to four weeks before trying to contact him again.

However, it could happen that he’ll send another text sometime soon, saying that he’s sorry about the previous one. When that happens, your ex has calmed down enough to have a conversation, so respond calmly as well.

4. No response

The worst option is no response, as it makes you feel hopeless.

Just imagine if you’ve been missing him these 30 days, working on yourself, and you get excited about finally texting him. You try your best to create the perfect message and nervously wait for what will happen.

You see that the message has been read, but there’s no response. It’s devastating.

Most people agree that even a negative reply is better than no reply. It leaves you wondering, and you don’t get your answer.

Be patient and wait for seven to ten days. He was probably surprised to get your text and doesn’t know how to respond.

Maybe he’s scared that he’ll say something wrong or just doesn’t know what to say.

It’s best to wait for him to text you, so don’t send him more texts after you get no reply.

Now that you know what to do after no contact, are you looking for ideas for your first text? Check out our other article where we list some examples of text messages for your ex and answer the question of whether you should text him.

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What is the most effective no contact rule? ›

One effective approach is the 'No-Contact Rule' for returning to your Ex. This strategy refers to entirely cutting off your communication, detaching yourself from that toxic member of your life and moving on from your ex following the breakup. Usually, the no-contact period must extend for at least 30-60 days.

What is the day 21 of the no contact rule? ›

Someone may still reach out to us, we may find ourselves reaching out to them. There are all manner of ways that we try and engage with each other. The 21-day no contact period is about detoxing from this situation for 21 days, giving 21 days of space.

What are the stages of the no contact rule? ›

The rule gives you the much-needed space to focus on yourself. The breakup ought to have been hard on you. After going through phases of anger, denial, bargaining, and depression, you've finally gained acceptance and begun moving on from a serious relationship.

What is the 30 no contact rule? ›

What Do You Mean 30 Day No Contact Rule? Exactly what it says, no contact, cut off all communication for an amount of time determined by certain factors. However, it's less of a rule and more of a technique or strategy to either move on with your life or reconcile.

How long after no contact will he reach out? ›

1 For an amicable breakup: around 30 days. 2 For a long-term relationship: at least 60 days. 3 If things got ugly at the end: roughly 90 days.

What is he thinking after 3 weeks of no contact? ›

After weeks of no word, he might begin to panic about losing you. He's been hoping and hoping you'll talk to him, but now he's realizing he'll be a permanent ex if he doesn't do something. He'll reflect deeply and, if he wants you back, make a plan to win you over.

What not to do during no contact? ›

Mistakes You Must Not Make During No Contact
  • Avoid Doing These Things If You Want Your Ex Back. ...
  • Number One, Breaking No Contact. ...
  • Mistake Two, Telling Your Ex That You Are In No Contact. ...
  • Third, Checking With The Other Person During No Contact To See If They Have 'Had Enough' ...
  • Fourth, Over Analyzing.
More items...

How long should no contact really be? ›

The no-contact rule refers to cutting off all contact with an ex following a breakup, and it's the best method for moving on from an ex. No contact should last for a minimum of 60 days, and it includes no texting, no calling, and no interacting on social media.

How long does it take for dumpers to regret? ›

Generally speaking, some dumpers regret their decision to break up only weeks after the incident. Other dumpers need years to feel that way. And some never even arrive at the final stage of dumpers remorse. Instead, they move on to someone else — be it a rebound or not.

Does the dumper go through grief? ›

Sadness (and regret) – Not every dumper reaches regret, but it is inevitable that they will hit sadness because no matter how they cope, no one can avoid grieving a loss.

What is the 3-month break up rule? ›

What the post-breakup 3-month rule basically means is that all parties previously linked must wait three months before dating again. The reason for this societal dictation is to give the people involved a breather, some lead time, maybe a little room for forgiveness.

What is the 90 no contact rule? ›

The 90-day no-contact rule after a breakup means just that — no contact for 90 days. Giving yourself at least three months to process a breakup without reaching out to your ex can help you grow, heal and think about yourself and your needs.

Should I reach out to my ex who dumped me after no contact? ›

You may think that reaching out will somehow change their mind and get them back. However, this is never the case. Contacting an ex who dumped you almost always repels them.

What should you avoid during no contact? ›

During this period of no contact, you should avoid initiating any sort of contact with your ex. No calling, texting, Snapchatting, Facebooking, Instagramming, etc. You may be tempted to text or call in the middle of the night when you're feeling alone and vulnerable or if you have a bad history of drunk texting.

What is he thinking after 2 weeks of no contact? ›

He might only think about himself.

He probably won't be wondering what you're feeling—instead, he'll only be thinking about how it's your loss or how to move on to the next girlfriend. Unfortunately, going “no contact” doesn't inspire a change of heart in every guy.

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