Emotional Momentum – Moving Things Forward With An Ex

You’ve probably heard or read that there needs to be some kind of emotional momentum for things to move to the where your ex is willing to give the relationship another chance.

But what is emotional momentum? Let’s start with “what is momentum?”

  • Tendency of a moving object to continue moving.
  • The strength or force that something has when it is moving. : the strength or force that allows something to continue or to grow stronger or faster as time passes.

Emotional momentum is using positive emotions to continue moving things forward and for connection to grow stronger or faster as time passes:

This is more than using validation or reassurance or  eliciting an emotional response, but about intensifying emotional involvement 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 just because it feels good to hear from you, and talk to you.

The more of your ex’s attention you hold, the more their emotional investment.

As discussed in my article: How to Get Back An Ex Who Is Acting Hot and Cold, you sacrifice the ability to hold your ex’s attention when you start a conversation, stop it, and then start it again after a few days (as you do in “low contact” or “limited contact”). There’s just not enough forward movement to create emotional momentum and strengthen the connection between you and your ex.

Most times conversations feel forced and unnatural, and you struggle coming up with what to talk about.

With emotional momentum, you can build conversations that feel more natural and that encourage more sharing and emotional bonding between you and ex.

For example:

Say, you connect on a conversation about Barak Obama being the greatest president ever (I had to go there, hopefully I’ll get many clicks. Hee…heee). But let’s for a moment say you connect and have a really nice conversation. You talk for 5 – 30 minutes depending on how well the conversation goes, and then you have to go your separate ways.

Next time, you can just begin another conversation from… “You can’t believe what I heard on BBC/read in the Global News… (and the conversation is about Barak Obama and what great thing he’s done now!)

Or you can simply say… “I thought again about what you said….”

Or… “After our conversation, I went and looked up….”

Just from that one conversation, you can start so many other conversations and keep building on the positive emotions created in the first conversation. No “what do I say” hand-wringing, “what should I talk about”.

Emotional momentum will carry you over to the next conversation.

Once in a while, you may run out of ways to continue the conversation, and that’s okay. Start another conversation.

More in: How To Initiate Conversations That Make Your Ex Want to Initiate Contact

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  • Yangki, I really like your different approach and already can see a significant shift in our dynamic. I would like to book a phone session with you but have a few questions on how to set up the session. How do I contact you?

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    • Most questions about coaching are answered in Coaching FAQs.

      If your question is about long distance calls to a mobile phone (outside of Canada and the US), please contact me via the contact form.

      Looking forward to being of help!

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  • Yangki, I have been a long time fan and your advice has really helped me. I have your book and we are at a point where we text each other 2 – 3 times a week, mostly on things not about the relationship or breakup. He has asked to meet up but I have avoided seeing him because I’m still very emotional over the breakup. We broke up because I became too needy and controlling. I’m working on myself and have changed a lot, thanks to you. I’m afraid however that if I keep putting him off he will think I’m not interested, but I’m also afraid I’ll get emotional and give him the impression I’m still the same person I was 4 months ago. What should I do?

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    • When you find yourself with two unwanted choices, always go with honesty: 1) You will have no/less regret/guilt and 2) most people react well to emotional honesty/vulnerability, and it may work to your favour.

      Next time he asks to meet, be honest and tell him you also want to see him but you’re not emotionally ready yet. You are working on yourself and although you have changed a lot, you don’t yet feel you are where you want to be. Tell him you appreciate his patience and wish the two of you would remain in contact because it’s helping you see things from a whole different and better angle. Then let him decide what he wants to do. Someone who truly loves you will always want what’s best for you.

      That said, try to get your emotions together because if you wait too long before meeting, whatever interest is there will begin to fade.

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  • Yangki, I followed your advice and re-established contact with my ex by just saying hello by text. She responded. We chatted briefly, nothing about us just catching up. I waited one day then contacted her again and we again had a very nice conversation. Things have progressed to where we have had two amazing dates and he asked me if I want to go with him on a short trip. We still haven’t talked about us in an extensive way except in passing. Should I bring us up on our trip or wait until after?

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    • Go for the trip, see what happens. If it’s still as amazing as the last two dates, then bring it up after you return. The more ‘amazing” new memories you create, the easier it is to talk about the past without it interfering with the present.

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