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If there’s one thing that redeems the terrible process of breaking up with someone, it’s the transformation-rich recovery period that follows.

Don’t get us wrong: Breakups are a sad, sorry business, and even the cleanest ones entail some kind of annoying consequence or follow-up, like adjusting to an empty bed or having to return that awesome space heater he left at your apartment. The key to making the most of your breakup is engaging in life-affirming activities: little things that will empower you start over and set out into the great unknown (singlehood—eek!) with courage and resilience. Resist binge-drinking, rebound guys or ex sex, and consider these fun post-breakup activities instead:

1) Vacationing

Breakups are stifling, and there’s no reason to sit around your house, marinating in everyday reminders of your ex, when you can be climbing the Great Wall of China or sipping mimosas in a European villa. If you’re afraid of vacationing alone, bring a friend. If anything, you might meet a handsome stranger who can further distract you from what’s-his-face back home.

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2) Chopping off your hair

It’s clichéd, we know, but the beautiful thing about breakups is that they provide you with a handy excuse for indulging in all kinds clichés for the sake of recovery. Makeovers help you start over by serving as a physical reminder that you’ve made a commitment to move on and change for the better. Remember how cute Reese Witherspoon’s breakup haircut looked after her divorce from Ryan Philippe? Get thee to a salon, long-tressed one! Just remember to let your stylist handle the sharp tools—haircuts are fun, but you don’t want to go down the Britney Spears route.

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