Whether the end of your marriage came as a surprise, or you tried to work out your marital problems for months, you and your spouse have now made the difficult decision to divorce. After attempts at settlement negotiations, your divorce is moving toward litigation – an adversarial and potentially costly and drawn out way to settle the business of the relationship. You need to prepare yourself for the road ahead mentally, physically and emotionally. The following tips will give you some ideas on how to do that.
Avoid letting negative emotions, such as revenge, hatred, anger or spite, get the best of you. Instead, focus on being thankful for what you do have. If you have friends who drain you mentally, reassess those relationships. You need a good support system to encourage you and provide a listening ear. Give yourself space and time to recover. Wait to make any major decisions, such as relocating to another city or changing jobs, until some of the dust from the divorce has settled.
Take care of yourself, physically. Get plenty of rest, exercise to deal with stress, meditate and pray, if you’re inclined, and take time for yourself. Spend time outdoors, and get a safe dose of sunlight. Eat a healthy diet, including plenty of healthy fats, protein and vegetables. Avoid consuming too much sugar, refined carbohydrate and processed vegetable oil. Consider limiting alcohol consumption during this time to maintain a clear head so that you can focus on the business at hand.
Emotional preparation is about more than just pulling yourself up by the boot straps, giving yourself a good pep talk and reading a few self-help books. It’s ultimately about persistence and resilience. As former President Calvin Coolidge once observed: “Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan, ‘press on’ has solved, and always will solve, the problems of the human race.”
Planning for the future to avoid being caught off guard by your soon-to-be ex’s tactics. Take care of yourself financially by organizing your spending, opening bank accounts under your name, reviewing and updating paperwork, and obtaining a copy of your credit report. Find a divorce lawyer whom you can trust to guide you through the process. Stay optimistic: there is life on the other side of divorce!