Free yourself from Post-Divorce Negativity

Leave-Negativity

Free yourself from Post-Divorce Negativity

Few events in life can fill you with so many negative emotions such as sadness, a sense of loss, despair, depression, anxiety and hatred like a bitter divorce. Even conscious uncoupling can be deeply unsettling. The first thing to realize is that it is all inside your own head. You may feel a torrent of emotions. But you decide exactly what to do with them, how to manage them and ultimately whether you come out a stronger, more developed, self-actualized person at the end who has experienced a kind of personal growth from this experience, or if you miss that chance due to retaining bitterness. If you are hurling all of this hatred and anger at your spouse, you’ll soon realize it’s like swallowing poison to murder someone; it hurts you terribly, but the impact on them is limited. Instead, an outlook of yourself both as patient and doctor is sufficient. You have these emotions and now it’s time to see how to best tend to them so that you get the best outcome. Your spouse as well may be casting vitriol at you every chance they get. You can’t control what happened or how they feel. Nor can you control their behavior. What you can control is your reaction to it, and how much you will let it bother you. There are some simple beliefs you can adopt to help shed your negativity and also protect yourself against your ex’s. Here’s how to free yourself from post-divorce negativity.

Realize that whatever your spouse says about you is their problem, not yours. Be sure to clear your name. And if they are using the children to spy or as a weapon, make sure to nip that situation in the bud. The children should never be put in the middle. They will suffer for it. But other than that, they will say what they will. You choose how you react to it. Their speech is all about them, not about you. What’s more, other people will be watching how you react. Will you be classy all the way, or sink to their level? In the end others judge them for their behavior, and they’ll sink themselves. Instead of seeing divorce as an end, which it invariably is, see it as a new beginning. You have freedom to be who you want to be, and discover a whole new you. Your life won’t be perfect after divorce, but it is still pretty good and it can be even be better. Make a dream board. Write in a diary. Make a bucket list. Go back to school. Get some more training or try and climb the ladder at work. Invest in a hobby. Take a trip with a friend. There are so many things you can do and so many directions you can take your life in now that your ex isn’t weighing you down. There will be good days and bad. If you need to cry it out, do it. It’s a healing process and think of it as such. But don’t wallow in grief. Know when it’s time to pick yourself up and get going again.

Realize that every experience you have in life is another lesson that makes you wiser and therefore a better person in the end. It may not feel like it now but this could be a completely transformative experience for you. Not everything in life is meant to endure. Change can be very scary and it can be hard to say goodbye. Just keep things moving. Make the necessary steps, no matter how small or staggering. Sooner or later you will make it to where you are supposed to be. Sometimes it feels satisfying to take part in divorce drama with your ex. But sooner or later you will understand that it weighs you down far more than it lifts you up. After a divorce you may feel like damaged goods. But the truth is people are judging you far less than you think. Understand that your life and your happiness is ultimately based on your own thinking and no one elses. You can make the world a better place and you can make your life all you want it to be. It’s all up to you. For more, pick up a copy of the book, The Rediscovery of Me: Reinventing Life after Divorce by Dr. Marcia Brevard Wynn and Earl Sewell.

Use Boyfriend Log to Track your Relationship

boyfriend

Use Boyfriend Log to Track your Relationship

How do you feel about your relationship? Is it blissful, volatile, ho-hum or crammed full of turbulence and drama? If you don’t really know how your relationship is going, or just want to get some insight, use Boyfriend Log, a new app available on iTunes to track your relationship. By using this app, you can look at your relationship over the long term, marking the highs, lows and in-betweens. You can also see whether or not there are codependency habits. It can help you recognize those habits so that you can break them.

Self-help guru and New York Times bestselling author Linda Sivertsen is the creator of this app. You can use it to track any relationship. Each day you select how you are feeling about a particular relationship: blue is sadness, red is anger, orange is happy and green is amazing. You select your color for the day and you can track these feelings over time. You can also log in on more than one relationship at once. The impetus for this project was Sivertsen’s husband leaving her. She said in an interview with IBTimes UK, “Before my husband left, all I wanted to do was hide in my house and write with my cats and dogs. I had this quiet life. But when he left, I felt lost. I had never paid for anything by myself, but I had to. So I had to scramble as I needed to put my 17-year-old son through college.”

Soon she realized that she suffered from codependency. This is putting the needs of your partner ahead of your own, forgiving too much too soon. These relationships are often emotionally or even physically abusive and alcohol or substance abuse can play a role. Discussing her codependency Sivertsen said, “I kept a diary [about] my husband and I would make entries when he gave me clear indications that he was unhappy. But when he apologized, I would feel guilty and delete the diary. When my husband left me, I realized that no amount of self-help books and seminars were helping me to break my habit of co-dependency and I think my sister and therapist were tired of being on speed dial, so I started keeping the diary again.”

By writing about her feelings every day she didn’t have to talk to anyone else. She could see over time how she felt about the relationship overall. It was such a successful method of helping her get over her marriage that her assistant began using the method, and liked it too. Soon she found a developer and five months later Boyfriend Log was born. The app is gaining in popularity despite that it wasn’t launched too long ago. Sivertsen said, “Every relationship is really three relationships: The one you’re having, the one he’s having, and the real one. About 20 years ago when I got into the self-help field, people were saying that online information is going to be the new way [people wanted to receive help], but now I’m hearing that mobile apps will be the new way.” To learn more about Codependency read, Facing Codependence: What it is, Where it Comes From, How it Sabotages Our Lives by Pia Mellody.

Getting Over someone You Adored

HEARTBROKEN

Getting Over someone You Adored

Sometimes you just can’t wait to get rid of someone and move on with your life. Then there are those relationships you regret ever getting into. There are the ones who sting and the ones that cut deep. But the worst of all is getting over someone you adored, someone you feel that you just can’t live without. You’d rather go without limbs, eyes and vital organs than your lover and can’t believe they’d even think of leaving you. Perhaps it’s just a passing phase, or they’ve suddenly become mentally ill. How will you go on living? The end of a relationship can consume your entire life. Some have even contemplated suicide. Whether it’s feelings of abandonment, inadequacy, guilt, misplaced anger or rejection just know that you are going to be okay. You’ll get through this. Someday you’ll wonder what is was that you saw in this person. First, it may be cliché but with time it will hurt less and less until one day you’ll be free and feeling great. Allow yourself the proper time to get over it. Don’t obsess over your ex. Instead, focus on you, how you are feeling and your healing. When you’re ready get back into the swing of things. Even if you don’t feel like it, fake it until you make it. Be social and engage with others. Start to reconnect with your own past. Find out what you want to do with your life. When you get to make decisions like that, single life can start to feel quite liberating.

Try different projects, volunteer, reconnect with your faith or explore a path you’ve always wanted to try. Lots of people find comfort in writing. Why not start a journal or even a blog? If you are into the arts take a local class. Spend some time thinking about improving yourself. What patterns do you see creeping up in your own life that are destructive? What can you do that’s a healthy alternative? Go on a road trip with a friend, visit a country you’ve always wanted to see, volunteer at your local homeless or animal shelter, tutor a child and feel what it’s like from other people’s point of view, in order to gain some perspective. Take up some new activities. Visit new places. Explore your interests, yourself and your world. When you are ready consider dating again. What would you be looking for? What did you learn works for you in past relationships and what hasn’t worked? Why not reconnect with past loves and see what they think of you and your relationship now in hindsight? What were the lessons that they learned? What did they learn about you? What really happens when you lose a major love is you find yourself, the love of your life. Once you reemerge a stronger person you will seek and find the person you’re meant to be with. So enjoy the journey inward that will lead to a quest to find love in the time to come. To explore this topic further pick up a copy of, Getting Past Your Breakup: How to Turn a Devastating Loss into the Best Thing That Ever Happened to You by Susan J. Elliott.

Do these within the First Three Months after a Breakup

HAPPY-MAN-ALONE

Do these within the First Three Months after a Breakup

A breakup or a divorce can make you feel upended, especially if it came suddenly. You can suffer heartache, guilt, anger and sadness. You can feel completely crushed, like your whole world has been turned upside down. Sometimes we depend on our mate to save us. But when you’re single you have to learn to save yourself. That may seem scary at first but the truth is the process can be liberating. Down the road you’ll wonder what you were so worried about. You might lose it a couple of times. But the sadness won’t crush you in the end. In fact, you’ll come out even more confident, happy and in control of your life then you ever were. You can let a moment like this crush you or you can use it to rebuild your life, to make a new life for yourself. The first ninety days are crucial. It’s what you do in that time that can either embarrass you or set you up on the path to healing and wholeness. Do these within the first three months after a breakup and you’ll be putting yourself on the proper path. Remember that this time is about your healing. At first you will be in the grief phase. Just follow your heart and do what feels right. Don’t isolate yourself however or depression might set in. Spend time with the people you love, and those that love you. Talk about your feelings and get some perspective.

Are you living in the same place and your house reminds you of them? Put it on the market. Does the furniture remind you of them? Buy new furniture. Or if you can’t afford that paint it, stain it, make it your own. Get a new bed, or at least get new sheets. Why not rearrange the furniture? Buy some flowers. Once enough time goes by and if you make the place really your own then you’ll feel fine about it again. Now is the time to challenge yourself. Break your routines. Try new things. Each day is a new deal and you can have a transformative experience, meet interesting new people and maybe even someone special. Don’t rush into a new relationship. But then again don’t be closed off from one. Don’t have revenge sex. But don’t be afraid to take part in a rebound that feels right just because you think the timing is off. Studies have shown that a genuine rebound relationship can help make you feel more attractive and increase self-esteem. But don’t do it if you aren’t ready, just to prove that you are, don’t force it. If it comes naturally let it. In general however this should be time that you can spend alone, getting reacquainted with yourself. Now you are actually free. No one’s opinion but your own sets your direction. You can do anything you want, be anyone you want to be. Go back to school, reinvest in your career, spend more time with the kids, try a new hobby or travel abroad and find yourself. In the immediate aftermath find something to help you heal. Sometimes yoga, a day at the spa or even journaling helps. For help with the last idea, read Write Him Off: Journal Prompts to Heal Your Broken Heart in 30 Days by Elizabeth N. Doyd.

Conquer Post-Divorce Depression

DIVORCE-TIPS

Conquer Post-Divorce Depression

Besides becoming a widow, divorce is the most painful experience we can go through with our spouse. The stress endured from a divorce can feel overpowering. The limbic system, which is the emotional center of our brain, can feel overwhelmed by this stress, transforming it into anxiety and depression. Chronic and acute stress takes its toll on our physical health. A recent study published in the Journal of Health and Social Behavior found that those who are widowed or divorced experience 20% more serious chronic diseases such as cancer, diabetes and heart disease than their married counterparts. Psychological Science recently published another study that showed that as one approaches divorce one’s happiness level plummets. But if this person puts in the time and the energy to mitigate the emotional toll of divorce they can bounce back in time. So here are some ways to conquer post-divorce depression, helping yourself to recover from divorce, cope and come out the other side happy and well-adjusted. The first thing you should do is distract yourself. A hobby like knitting or crocheting, making things or taking up a physical activity such as yoga, jogging, swimming, a martial arts class or biking, or taking part in the arts like painting, writing or practicing a musical instrument can help take your mind off the divorce. Some people like to lose themselves in a great novel. Others begin taking up the hobbies they didn’t or couldn’t do when they were married.

Don’t take part in the same kind of routine during the divorce you had during your marriage. Switch things up. Start your own daily rituals and routines that help center you and focus on yourself. Listening to music that you like and that soothes you, but your ex hated, can help, as can yoga, meditation, and more. Find ways to reclaim your day and make it your own, and do the same with other aspects of your life. Roberta Temes, a noted psychotherapist and author who wrote about overcoming grief and divorce, wrote about the advantages planning had on distracting one from one’s pain. Plan out everything, your day, your week, your month even your year. Plan what you will have for breakfast and when you will pencil in time to learn the guitar. Plan everything and it will make you feel more positive and more in control of your life, and will help distract you. One way to gain a new handle on your life is to organize and clean out everything. Go through the closets and drawers. Get all of your ex-spouse’s stuff together and make plans for them to pick it up. If they don’t want these items there is always charitable organizations that will take them. Don’t put your ex-spouses stuff out in the garbage or on the curb without their notice. If you want to reduce your stress, set a tone of distant professionalism. If you don’t act like this it will induce a response or play itself out in the divorce and end up causing you more pain and stress. Instead, act maturely and your spouse will hopefully respond in kind.

Often people fight hard for what they think is right or what they deserve in a divorce settlement. But all of that fighting can also take its toll on you emotionally. It’s better to be at peace and happy than right. So know how to pick your battles. Whether or not your ex-spouse is responsible for a laundry list of transgressions, focusing on them and making yourself bitter only hurts you, not them. They only have so much access to you now, whereas you can ruminate on this hatred twenty-four hours a day. Instead, learn to fight for what’s important, to compromise, to negotiate. Of course, stick to your guns when it is something important to you. But learn to let go. Would you rather a divorce that is absolutely fair, one where you use the process to get your revenge, or do you want a divorce that is as painless as possible? Make sure to take your health, including your mental health, into consideration before you decide. Be sure to reach out to family and friends at this juncture. Reach out when you need people to help or just to talk. Let the grieving process go by naturally and focus on what you need to make yourself better and happy again. For more advice, read Releasing a Person: Fast Recovery from Heartbreak, a Breakup or Divorce by Kathryn Alice.