Getting a divorce may be very new ground for you, but this doesn’t mean you have to walk into it blindly. There are many resources at your disposal if you’re willing to seek them out and utilize them; for instance, websites like the American Board Association (ABA.org) and others. You can also seek advice from people who have already gone through a divorce by consulting colleagues or visiting sites such as this one that share experiential advice.
Being prepared with facts and knowledge about divorce, you can then formulate a clear strategy of how you would like things to proceed. This isn’t wishful thinking either; it will take more than thinking, “how I would love for this to happen”; it takes clear strategy and intention. Learn what is possible for your side of the divorce case; how much money you can walk away with or lose, how much time you can potentially have with your children, what financial assets could be allotted to or taken away from you, etc. After having a picture of what is possible and probable for your side, create a list of the things you would like to see happen as an outcome of your divorce. For each thing, write an explanation of how this is possible according to your research, but also write down the potential for it to not work out. It’s best to be realistic.
There might be things on your list that you’re more confident about than others. These things could be on the top of your list. For example, if you and your spouse aren’t disputing about child custody and you both agree that shared custody is best, you can put at the top of your list: shared child custody. Having goals that you are more certain about will give you confidence in pursuing other goals that are less certain. For example, you and your ex might both want to keep the marital home. Your goal could be to get the marital home, but then explain why you would be given the house and also why your ex would be given the house.
Having a clear strategy like this will help you feel more prepared and confident about your divorce. It will be worth your time and effort to get the most desirable outcome you can possibly attain from your current circumstances.