How to Get Over a Bad Breakup, as Explained by Your Favorite Celebs

We've turned to some of Hollywood's biggest stars for breakup advice

01 of 16

Kelsea Ballerini: Heal on Your Terms

Kelsea Ballerini
Kelsea Ballerini. Mary Kouw/CBS via Getty

After Kelsea Ballerini called it quits with her ex-husband Morgan Evans, she embarked on an "active healing journey." In her endeavor to grow, she decided to fully dedicate herself to her latest record, Subject to Change. Speaking on CBS Mornings in October 2022, the singer said she was "showing up for this album and showing up for myself like I never have."

Even though she feels as though she's going against her natural instincts to be a "peacemaker" and "people-pleaser," Ballerini leaned into the desire to prioritize herself.

"It's easy to shame yourself and it's easy to want to hide, and I just want to be proud of myself, in 10 years, on this season of my life," she said on the talk show. "This is not just a heavy time in my life, this is also a celebratory time in my life. I don't want to shade that because that's important to feel."

02 of 16

Jennifer Lopez: Know Your Worth First

Jennifer Lopez attends the "Halftime" Premiere during the Tribeca Festival Opening Night
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When Jennifer Lopez and Jane Fonda sat down to chat for a Glamour Q&A in 2011, the Shotgun Wedding star shared her biggest takeaway from all of her past relationships.

"You've got to love yourself first. You've got to be OK on your own before you're OK with someone else," Lopez told Fonda. "You've got to value yourself and know that you're worth everything. And until you value yourself enough and love yourself enough to know that, you can't really have a healthy relationship."

03 of 16

Taylor Swift: Go at Your Own Pace

Taylor Swift attends 'In Conversation With... Taylor Swift' during the 2022 Toronto International Film Festival at TIFF Bell Lightbox on September 09, 2022 in Toronto, Ontario
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In a 2015 interview with Elle, Swift described how she recently had experienced heartbreak — and how she knew she was over it. And much like her lyrics, her advice is so specific and also so universal.

"A heartbroken person is unlike any other person. Their time moves at a completely different pace than ours. It's this mental, physical, emotional ache and feeling so conflicted. Nothing distracts you from it. Then time passes, and the more you live your life and create new habits, you get used to not having a text message every morning saying, 'Hello, beautiful. Good morning.' You get used to not calling someone at night to tell them how your day was. You replace these old habits with new habits, like texting your friends in a group chat all day and planning fun dinner parties and going out on adventures with your girlfriends, and then all of a sudden one day you're in London and you realize you've been in the same place as your ex for two weeks and you're fine. And you hope he's fine."

04 of 16

Michael B. Jordan: Lean Into Work

ATLANTA, GEORGIA - FEBRUARY 23: Michael B. Jordan attends the CREED III HBCU fan screening presented by MGM Studios at Regal Atlantic Station on February 23, 2023 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Paras Griffin/Getty Images for MGM Studios)
Paras Griffin/Getty

In February 2023, Michael B. Jordan told CBS Mornings co-host Gayle King about how keeping busy prevented him from dwelling on his painful breakup with Lori Harvey the previous year.

"I think for me it's just that I was lucky enough to have a lot of work," he said during the TV appearance. "I'm a firm believer in that what's for you is what's for you, and coming out of that situation — not to give it, you know, any energy and kind of move from that — is you know, it was an experience for me to grow and learn."

Having come out on the other side of the heartache, Jordan spoke optimistically about what the future has in store.

"I'm in my light right now. This is my Jordan year, I mean that," the actor said. "This is my year. There's so much going on, so many blessings, so many great things."

05 of 16

Gwyneth Paltrow: Find Your Peace

Gwyneth Paltrow attends Veuve Clicquot Solaire Culture Exhibit Launch
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Gwyneth Paltrow, who famously used the term "conscious uncoupling" to describe her divorce from Chris Martin, certainly seems to have a steady head on her shoulders during times of romantic turmoil. In an essay she wrote for Vogue, the Goop founder listed the characteristics that defined her amicable split with the Coldplay singer.

First of all, Paltrow needed to be simultaneously forgiving and empathetic: "I came to understand that forgiveness involves taking responsibility for your half of the relationship," she wrote. "You cannot begin to forgive until you have felt what it is like to be in your partner's shoes, coping with the hardest parts of you, your trauma, your dysfunction."

The lifestyle guru also explained that "spite" is only a hindrance to moving forward. "The point of a break-up, if you have to go through it, is to grow. To use the opportunity to really look at yourself and heal broken patterns so you don't find yourself in the same situation again," Paltrow said, adding, "if spite blocks that process, being able to cultivate good feelings will encourage it."

Finally, try to focus on the things you loved about your former partner, to help facilitate a more positive uncoupling: "Love all of those wonderful parts of them. They still exist, they can still make you feel the way you felt for that person. Rather than shutting them out, lean into the unfamiliarity of those feelings and explore them."

06 of 16

Khloé Kardashian: Distract Yourself

Khloé Kardashian attends the SHEIN X 100K Challenge 2021
SHEIN X 100K Challenge 2021/Getty Images

On her now-defunct website, Khloé with a K, the reality star opened up about her approach to moving on after romantic fallout. One way to stay on the road to recovery, she said, is keeping your mind focused elsewhere.

"The busier you are, the less you're going to think about something, so I would try to consume your thoughts with productive things. Try to just find a hobby and keep yourself busy in a really positive way. Or surround yourself with friends and family that you love and who do really occupy your mind," Kardashian said.

Still, the Good American rejected the idea that "there is a timeline for grieving or healing or getting over someone or something." She asserted her belief that "we all heal on our own time–some are faster than others, and I think some loves are really just harder to get over than others."

07 of 16

Rihanna: Change Your Perspective

Rihanna speaks during a press conference for the Apple Music Super Bowl 57 halftime show at the Phoenix Convention Center on February 9, 2023 in Phoenix, Arizona.
Rihanna. Cooper Neill/Getty

Rihanna passed on some wisdom via Twitter direct message when a fan asked her how to cope with romantic woes.

"Just believe that the heartbreak was a gift in itself! Cry if you have to, but it won't be forever!" the singer sweetly advised. "You will find love again, and it will be even more beautiful! In the meantime enjoy all that YOU are!!!"

08 of 16

Blake Lively: Grow Through It

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - FEBRUARY 28: Blake Lively attends "The Adam Project" New York Premiere on February 28, 2022 in New York City. (Photo by Dia Dipasupil/FilmMagic)
Dia Dipasupil/FilmMagic

It may sound crazy, but in 2011, Blake Lively told Us Weekly that she's generally managed to avoid overly agonizing breakups. Her trick, she says, is to look back at each unsuccessful romance as a positive, formative experience.

"Every relationship you have, you're learning and growing and taking something from that," the actress said. "So for me, it's never been too dramatic of a thing when something ends."

09 of 16

Jennifer Aniston: Feel Your Feelings

ennifer Aniston arrives at the 77th Annual Golden Globe Awards attends the 77th Annual Golden Globe Awards at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on January 05, 2020
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In a 2005 interview with Vanity Fair, Jennifer Aniston spoke out for the first time about her split from Brad Pitt. As she acknowledged her own pain, the actress also explored the broader intricacies of trying to move on after a devastating breakup. They key to starting anew after a tragic end, she said, is to confront the hurt head-on.

"There are many stages of grief. It's sad, something coming to an end. It cracks you open, in a way — cracks you open to feeling," Aniston explained in the article. "When you try to avoid the pain, it creates greater pain."

10 of 16

Alexa Chung: Don't Book a Haircut

ALEXACHUNG London Launch & Summer 17 Collection Reveal
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In her book It, Alexa Chung offered her thoughts on the common instrict to update your look as you update your relationship status.

"Hair is so linked to how we feel and everyone goes for something radical after a break-up, but my advice is not to touch your hair. It's the first thing women do but you're not in a fit state to make long-term decisions. You'll have to spend four years growing it out," Chung warned her readers.

An easier way to revamp your style? "Buy a lipstick instead," says the fashion expert. "Go and kiss loads of other people, but don't f---ing touch your hair."

11 of 16

Ryan Reynolds: Get Creative

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When one fan tweeted that she superimposed a picture of the Deadpool star over her ex-boyfriend in their prom photos, Reynolds voiced nothing but support in response. "We should photoshop me over his yearbook picture next. #DontMessWithGabi," the star replied.

12 of 16

Mindy Kaling: Learn to Love Being Alone

Mindy Kaling
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The TV mogul answered fans' request for her advice with Buzzfeed in 2015, and she doled out some pretty solid thoughts on how to cope with loneliness when not in a relationship. When she was in her twenties, Kaling said, she "used to freak out about being single," however as her professional success increased, so did her solo confidence.

"I think what snaps me out of it is just the fact that I love being by myself," she explained. "I think that if I was in the wrong relationship, which I have been in several, that would be so much worse than the feeling of autonomy I feel right now."

13 of 16

Miley Cyrus: Trust Things Will Work Out

Miley Cyrus attends the Tom Ford AW20 Show at Milk Studios on February 07, 2020 in Hollywood, California
Mike Coppola/FilmMagic

In a 2017 interview on SiriusXM's Hits 1, Miley Cyrus shared her thoughts on couples that rekindle their romance after a breakup, just as she and Liam Hemsworth did during their relationship.

"I think that's awesome, because you know it's true, but you get time to be yourself. You get time to grow up," she said. "I think if you're growing up attached to another person, you never really get solid as your own being."

As far as her own on-and-off timeline with Hemsworth, the "Flowers" singer followed her instincts. "I didn't know if that was the end of it, or if we'd be back together again," she explained on the radio show. "But [I] knew that wherever I was going, I was on the right path."

14 of 16

Katy Perry: Don't Text Your Ex

katy perry
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During an interview with popular romance radio host Delilah Rene for her podcast "Conversations with Delilah," Perry revealed that not hitting send on certain messages has been her saving grace on a number of occasions.

"It's like a lesson in self-control," she said. "I like drafting and then sleeping on it because, for me, my emotions get very heightened in the evening [and] then in the morning when I wake up I'm like, 'Oh, I'm so glad I didn't send that! I can get through another day without this situation.'"

15 of 16

Lauren Conrad: Indulge a Little

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - MARCH 08: Lauren Conrad attends The Little Market's International Women's Day Celebration 2022 on March 08, 2022 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Stefanie Keenan/Getty Images for The Little Market)
Stefanie Keenan/Getty for The Little Market

Lauren Conrad offered some empathetic counsel for heartbroken readers of her blog. The Hills alum wrote: "There are those breakups that are so bad that you will need a good cry and a pint (or two) of Ben & Jerry's. Let yourself have what you need. (Note: Hanging with Carrie, Charlotte, Samantha and Miranda will help too.)"

In the same way she advised her readers to enjoy some frozen treats and binge-watch a beloved show, Conrad also sanctioned the inevitable–albeit possibly painful–deep reflection that follows a split.

"Let yourself go and let yourself obsess over every little detail of the breakup and the relationship," she said. "You will need to do this for yourself. You will need to allow your mind to take it all in so that by the time you get back up on your feet, you know how you feel."

16 of 16

Selena Gomez: Jam Out in Good Company

Selena Gomez attends the 80th Annual Golden Globe Awards
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The Only Murders in the Building star and her BFF, Taylor Swift, lean on each other when the dating game gets tough. Gomez told Seventeen about how the two team up and make each other catchy and cathartic playlists when one of them suffers heartbreak.

"I would send her some girl-empowering music, and she would send some back. We had 'Since U Been Gone' by Kelly Clarkson, of course; we had to have that as number one. We had 'Battle' by Colbie Caillat, 'Walk Away' by Kelly Clarkson," said Gomez, noting that Clarkson has a particularly good selection of breakup tunes. "We just sat there and made so many. And every time we would be together, we'd sit there and jam out to it too."

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