Coping with a divorce is almost as difficult as coping with life after death. Both involve grieving in order to process a loss. Losing someone that you were close to causes emotional pain and suffering, and we’ve all been through it in one form or another.
Many people who get divorced are grateful that they are now unattached. Even so, there is still stress that must be dealt with. Stress cannot be ignored because it will rear its ugly head in one form or another. If you don’t feel the stress building up emotionally, you will either feel it physically or mentally. If you ignore this pain and stress and allow it to be repressed deeper in your mind, it isn’t going to get better, only worse.
So, here are some tips to help you cope with a divorce:
- Focus on Your Emotions – How do you feel? What’s going through your mind? Process these emotions so that you can be at peace.
- Get Counseling – Both individual and group counseling will be a much welcomed form of therapy. If you have no one to talk to, you won’t be able to fully process your emotions, and your stress will then increase. Check out this article: http://www.webmd.com/sex-relationships/features/life-after-divorce-3-survival-strategies
- Surrender – No one on earth has control over anything. Sure, we can go with the flow or we can attempt to make changes. However, remember to stay focused on the things you can control, and let go of everything else. (Hint: Read the Serenity Prayer).
- Don’t Lie to Yourself, it only makes things worse for you – Read this article: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jackie-pilossoph/coping-with-divorce-20-li_b_3619899.html.
- Have Fun – In order to get rid of stress, you have to take time and enjoy your life. Enjoy yourself by getting a massage, going to a club, or doing something fun that you love.
- Diet and Exercise – When dealing with overwhelming or stressful emotions, it’s important to take care of your body. Many people tend to ignore their physical needs. This can create even more stress and possibly sickness. Exercise releases endorphins into the blood stream. These are feel good chemicals that cut stress off at the pass.
- Don’t Make Big Decisions Right Now – Your mental capacities are overtaxed right after a divorce, so make sure not to make any decisions like buying a house or a car, or even getting re-married. Re-marriage may have been your primary reason for divorcing, but give it some time. You aren’t telling yourself ‘NO’, you are telling yourself ‘not right now’.
- Laugh – Laughter is truly the best medicine and it heals the soul. Watch comedies, or better yet, go to a comedy club. Keep a good sense of humor around friends and family, and show the world that you are an over comer!
- Re-Create Yourself – Get out and have fun. Find new hobbies, re-invent your life. You are not a ‘spouse’ any longer. You are single, so enjoy it while you can.
- Don’t Be Afraid to Start Over – Starting over again includes all of the above and more. Do something different, take a college course, write in a journal, or volunteer your time to something you love.
Once you do these things, you will find out who you really are apart from your ex. When you get married you base your identity on your life with your significant other. You are starting over again, so take advantage of this new beginning. It’s hard to take action in the midst of overwhelming emotions, but it’s the most therapeutic thing you can do for yourself.