You would think that ending a relationship — be it personal or professional — is bad enough a situation to be in, however, it isn’t very often that we consider the kind of awkward scenarios we might be subjected to, after that break-up.
Every ugly split ends with a winner and a loser. So when two exe-s meet, they are often trying to prove to each other, who is doing better. That’s exactly what happened when 22-year-old Archana Nair, met her ex-boyfriend at an official party. “He looked great. He had a new job, a new girl and a bright smile on his face. I, on the other hand, was watching rom-coms every night with a handkerchief in one hand and a big tub of ice cream in the other. He was the winner, clearly, and I felt pathetic,” she confesses.
Battle of the exes
Archana admits to have got a little too drunk that night, to hide her embarrassment, but according to 30-year-old Anjana Sharma, a marketing professional in the city, that’s the last thing you should be doing. “As tacky as it sounds, a rendezvous with the ex, in my experience, has always been like a game. You must not show him your weak side or shy away, instead face him with confidence. Tell him about all the great things happening in your life, even if they aren’t that great,” she says.
City psychologist Mansi Hasan seems to share a similar view. She insists that in cases where relationships have ended due to anger or the other person being hostile, it may be a good idea to avoid interaction until the other person comes forward. “When they do, keep your response as neutral and short as possible. Act as if you are meeting a stranger,” she says.
Take the higher road
On the professional front, meeting a former rival or a previous boss — when you have left the said company on a bad note, can be even more distressing than running into an ex partner. “The awkwardness that develops is exhausting. Do I say hello first? Do I tell him or her that I’m at a much better place now? Do I need to talk to them in the first place? All these questions cloud my mind,” exclaims 26-year-old Gaurav Yadav, who works at a content management firm in the city. “The thing with some ex bosses, is that they refuse to leave their bitterness and condescension even if you aren’t their employee anymore,” says Yadav.
But keeping cool, and maintaining your dignity is always a better option than contesting their opinions, says Hasan. “Remember there are a lot of people watching you. Resist the provocation and show that you have moved on from the past experience and grown to be a better and more mature person.”
Don’t show your negativity or vulnerability to the person
Don’t keep staring at him or her, and talking about them with the acquaintance who is with you at that moment
Don’t get into a sticky spot by talking about the past or blaming the person for it
Don’t be reactive just respond and choose your actions.
Smile, it usually diffuses tension.