How to Get Your Ex to Start Initiating Contact

get-your-ex-stay-longer-text-conversationsNow that you know what emotional momentum is and how important it is to catching and holding your ex’s attention long enough for him/her to begin looking forward to your texts or calls, and even start initiating contact; your next step should be to move away from meaningless contact to actual real conversations that bring you closer to your ex.

An emotionally bonding conversation is emotionally satisfying on its own. Many emotionally bonding conversations over an extended period of time intensify emotional involvement creating emotional momentum.

1) Identify what your ex feels emotionally connected to.

Remember I said earlier on that each and everyone of us has emotional catalysts that hurry us along towards making a decision, and it’s different for everyone.

Well, if you’ve actually been “present” in your relationship and not just riding along on great sex or emotional drama, or walking on egg-shells around your ex, you should know your ex well enough to know what holds your ex’s attention.

If you don’t know what holds your ex’s attention, it will be really hard to build emotional momentum.

2) Find the emotion and use it in an interesting yet authentic way.

When people communicate, they give away a lot of information about how they are feeling. I’m not taking about how your ex is feeling about YOU, that’s the “Me, Myself and I” mentality at work.

I’m talking about how THEY feel… if they are happy/excited about an achievement, feeling sad about something that happened, stressed out at work etc.

Yes, that “how THEY feel”…. the one you are not interested in because it’s not about you.

That “how THEY feel” is VERY important if you want to be a part of your ex’s emotional world, make your ex look forward to your texts or calls, and get him/her to start initiating contact.

How you do that is by connecting to the emotion he/she is communicating at any particular moment.

This is one other reason why maintaining contact with your ex is crucial. It’s hard to know if your ex is happy, feeling sad or stressed out if you haven’t been in contact for 3 months.

3) Make sure you do not force emotional momentum to happen.

It’s so easy to get too emotionally involved in trying to create emotional momentum that you end up undermining what you’re trying to achieve.

“Trying too hard” will show as forced, unauthentic and manipulative.

The trick is to stay present (a conversation at a time). Be genuinely interested in what your ex is interested in — ask questions, make suggestions, provide additional insight, challenge etc, pay attention to how your ex is feeling and connect with that feeling or emotion.

Do this over an extended period of time, and those emotionally bonding great conversations will begin to build emotional momentum.

You can create emotional momentum just by text, email and phone calls alone — without meeting in person. In some cases it may even be best to hold off meeting in-person until there is enough emotional momentum to make the in-person meeting or date more effective.

If you are struggling with building momentum, I am happy to work with you one-on-one to develop a strategy/plan of action that’ll move things forward.

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39 Comments

  • Yangki, I have been reading your articles for around a month now and finally bought your book a few days ago as i wanted more guidance. My ex and I talk on a regular basis and he responds to my texts immediately. However, I noticed that he responds pretty quickly to questions related to his work, family and dog. But when I ask him anything personal like what he is doing over the weekend he stops answering my texts or says something like “not much” or “going out”. Is there a reason for this? And how do I get him to open up more?

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    • It takes time for an ex to let you in on their personal life especially if you have been cut off from each other’s life for a prolonged period of time.

      As long as he’d responding and engaged, keep building emotional momentum and responding to his emotional bids for connection. He’ll open up as emotional safety is created. All that is in the book.

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  • We were together for 8 months and he broke it off because he didn’t feel he was in love with me. After 3 weeks of no contact, I reached out to him. I used your advice and we’ve been on 5 dates. I initiated 2 and he initiated 3. We both have busy schedules but we try to keep in touch every day. My question is, should I now step back and let him pursue me? I don’t want to push him away but I also want him to feel he’s in love with me.

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    • With the information you’ve given, I don’t think that he’ll “pursue” you if you pull back, now.

      I think that you should do more to address why he didn’t feel he was in love with you. If you don’t, you’ll get to a certain point (like before) and he’ll again break it off because he’s not feeling “it”.

      Why he’s not feeling “it” may have to do with you trying to “manage” the relationship a little too much (like you are doing now), instead of letting things happen more naturally. Just a wild guess…

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  • Hi Yangki, I have been following your ebook and also had 1 hr session with you. Your advice has been very helpful. She has initiated 2 conversations in the last month. Should I now step back and let her initiate more?

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    • It’ll set you back. Two conversations doesn’t seem like balance has been restored, I am sure you have initiated a lot more. See if you can get to a ratio of one for one or even one for two, before you change anything.

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  • Starting last week she began not responding to my texts and sending one word answers. She even turned down my requests to speak over the phone. My first response was to give her space and not contact her for a few weeks. But this has pretty much been the pattern so I decided to try your approach. I asked some very specific questions. At first I got the same one word responses, but after a couple of texts she opened up more. She even sent me a couple of links and followed up with asking me what I thought. Is this emotional momentum?

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  • Yangki, I had momentum until last week. I went to a party and got completely wasted and sent him a drunk text saying I really missed him. The next morning I regretted it and wrote him one back saying that I missed him as a person and that he shouldn’t get freaked out. He didn’t reply until the next day, “I understand :)”. I thought well its over and so called him for closure but he didn’t answer. This morning, two days later, I received a text from him “I was with family over the weekend. How was your weekend?” His family lives in another state. I replied “Weekend was good 🙂 thanks for asking. Hope you have a good week :)” and that is it. What do you think?

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    • I agree, some momentum was lost there. Your impulsive actions may have given him some concern. It’s almost like you’re subconsciously trying to sabotage yourself and any possibilities of a relationship. But he’s still responding, that’s always a good sign that all is not completely lost.

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  • Yangki–I am following your advice and working on building momentum. I think I am making progress since we are speaking longer on the phone and he initiates communication equally. My question is, how can I stay in contact with him and handle the hurt I feel? I don’t want to go NC because I want to work things out. But it hurts to talk to him and not be with him. I almost understand why people do NC because this hurts so much. How can I deal with this while working to build momentum with him?

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  • How do I build emotional momentum. My ex and I talk about every two weeks, but I feel like the relationship is not moving forward. I need help build the momentum. what do I say???

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    • Momentum is not about “what to say”. Momentum is created from a series of actions/steps consistently taken over a period of time.

      I’m happy to be of help. You can learn more about working with me here. Looking forward to working with you.

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  • Thank you, Yangki. I showed my exs texts to my therapist and my therapist says my ex is just trying to tie up loose ends. She says its best if i dont respond and let it go. Also there is one text my therapist says she is trying to make me jealous. Ive been cool and confident and not needy but Im so confused.

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    • I haven’t seen the texts… it’s possible that your therapist is right.

      As I said before, the detached game you are playing isn’t helping the situation. You can’t know what your ex is upto if you are not communicating, and you can’t make any progress playing the passive role.

      You keep this up, and she might think you are not interested.

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  • After 2 weeks of no contact she sent me a text asking how im doing. I waited a week then sent her a text saying I was doing fine. The next week she texted me again and i waited 2 days before replying. She texts me 1-2 times a week. I dont initiate any contact and don’t rush to respond when she texts me. I keep it pleasant but light and dont divulge any information about me. A couple of times shes tried to talk to me about the breakup but I cut the conversation short so it doesnt turn ugly. She even said maybe she made a mistake but when I pressed her on what she meant she said to forget it. Is there hope in her coming back the way Im doing things? Sometimes I feel like Im making progress and other times I dont know.

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    • At some point you’ll have to communicate beyond superficial texts. As the first and second part of the articles says, a text or call once in a while is just that, contact. Until you start really connecting on a deeper level, you won’t see much progress.

      As for the rest of your strategy re: not initiating contact, I think you are making a mistake that could potentially backfire.

      Here is an article you’ll find helpful. Should I Let My Ex Initiate All Contact?

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  • My ex and I have text conversations every other day. He is responsive and positive but after three or so exchanges he just stops. In your book you say sometimes conversations end naturally and I understand that but I feel like sometimes he just ends it abruptly. Any explanation for this? I guess I am still adjusting to the change in the pattern of our communication.

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    • There are various reasons, e.g. he’s busy, he doesn’t want to have long text conversations, he doesn’t know what to say, the topic of conversation at the time is not something he’s interested in or comfortable with, etc. All these are things that lead to dropped conversations, that and the fact that you are not in a relationship so he doesn’t feel he has to communicate with you in any particular way.

      What important is what happens when you reconnect. Do you feel more connected or less connected.

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