Divorce is a significant life change. It isn’t merely an inconvenience, but an intensely emotional experience that affects you profoundly. It can create a variety of feelings, from anger and relief to sadness and fear. That said, one way to cope is to allow yourself to start thinking about your future after the divorce, and how you’ll navigate it.
Thinking about your future after the divorce may seem inconceivable. It’s easy to feel like it’s an impossibility with numerous obstacles to tackle. Often, a couple is tied together through children, extended family, and friends. A support system will be important as you heal and move forward. How will that work? If there has been damage done, like infidelity or lies, you may need to work on trust issues. And what about another relationship? Most people don’t want to go down the same path.
Address Your Future One Step at a Time
If you are thinking about your future after the divorce all at once, it may feel overwhelming. Just like a major goal you may want to accomplish. Typically, the best approach is to take things one step at a time—and not force yourself to rush it. People may have a lot of advice—but no one knows you better than you.
Start by Healing and Getting Help
Don’t ignore the painful emotions that go along with divorce. You may feel rejected, sad, or scared. If possible, work with a therapist to move through the grieving period. If finances are limited, there are support groups through community groups and churches. Look at what’s available in your area. Remember, it’s okay to feel. Loved ones may encourage you to “get back out there” or that you’re “better off” without your former spouse. If it doesn’t feel right, remember they are doing their best, but make choices that feel right for you.
Add Coping Skills to Your Life
What will get you through the day? What will help you move forward? When considering coping skills, these are essential questions. Maybe take 30 minutes to exercise each morning, or add a bath and book routine to your day before you go to bed. Perhaps more time with friends, or join a hobby group. Carve out the space to do healthy things that will help you cope. By creating reliable support systems and self-care routines, you add skills that allow you to thrive in the future, with or without a partner.
Embrace Your Talents
A lot of people self-defeat with statements like, “there isn’t anything I’m good at.” That’s not true. You have something. Take the opportunity to rediscover yourself and your passions. Add them back into your life. Journal, set goals, plan. All of these things allow you to think about the future beyond divorce. In fact, they may even help you feel excited about life.
When caught in vicious cycles of dysfunction, arguments, or depression, it makes it much harder to find joy and get things done. While divorce is a last resort, it may be the thing you need to really live life again and to reconnect with who you are.
Expect Fear, Obstacles, and Backslides
You may run into your ex and their new partner or hit a holiday where it’s not your turn with the kids. You will have setbacks, challenges, and strong feelings will resurface. Face them head on as best as you can. There is no shame in being human and having very human reactions. However, look at this time as an opportunity to change behavior patterns and create strategies to get back on track.
No one said thinking about your future after the divorce would be easy, but you can use it as a way to discover a life that lets you thrive. heal and reconnect with yourself and your passions and as an opportunity to create a life where you thrive. Even if you run into obstacles, setbacks, and challenges, you can use them to release old habits and reactions.
Giving You The Best Chance for a Positive Future
At Best Legal Choices, we work as a group of professionals to help you through divorce using a collaborative process. Collaborative divorce keeps you out of court while you continue to work through this process directly with your spouse. The professionals at Best Legal Choices include collaborative divorce attorneys, financial neutral professionals, and communication coaches to make sure you have the best chance for a positive future.
If you or someone you know if considering divorce contact us to discuss your options.