Important but Painful Realizations about Divorce

MAN-DIVORCE

Important but Painful Realizations about Divorce

Are you going through an unexpected divorce? This can be a devastating experience. Whether it’s being constantly reminded of your spouse or having trouble adjusting to single life, lots of people have made these important but painful realizations about divorce and come out the other end stronger. Though this advice may sound hollow or cliché, it may be exactly what you need to hear to help you get back on the road to independence, recovery and contentment.

Just remember that following a divorce should be a period of grieving. But things can only improve over time. In the beginning it can be an emotional roller coaster. But once things level out you do feel a little bit better every day. If you have children with your ex, you are going to have to get used to the situation. Don’t let seeing them again open old wounds. Find a healthy way to interact. Put on your best face and move forward. Find healthy ways to help yourself heal and feel better; exercise, meditation, or talking to a good friend are all good ways. Alcohol, junk food and locking yourself up for months at a time, not so much.

You’re going to be okay. This is a mantra for a lot of divorced people. But if you repeat it to yourself enough times, have enough talks with friends, cry, and reconnect with yourself, though the pain is immense in the beginning, you start to know that your happiness doesn’t begin or end with a divorce. It begins or ends with you, who you are, who you choose to be and the choices you make. Realize how better off you are without that person in your life. Is this the kind of relationship you want? Of course not. You need someone who is loving, supportive, appreciative and who will be there for you no matter what. And if you are reading this it’s obvious your ex wasn’t that person.

You can view it as the end of a marriage. Or you can view it as a new beginning. If someone tells you they are there for you to talk, believe them and use them. It will really help you. Gather your network around you. You need all the support you can get. When people tell you their sorry, understand that they are on your side. They don’t know what to say exactly. But they want to comfort you. If they say this, believe them. For more advice read, Broken Open: How Difficult Times Can Help Us Grow by Elizabeth Lesser.

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.

Does your Ex make you Jealous?

jealous

Does your Ex make you Jealous?

When you’ve been together with someone you care about and you break up, it’s hard to pivot away from seeing them as yours and instead seeing them as someone you’re not associated with anymore. But that painful transition becomes compounded when your ex moves on before you’ve had a chance to fully heal. Don’t hasten through when you aren’t ready. But don’t wallow in misery either. Some people reflect on it over and over, making the heart sicker than it needs to be. Instead, let the grieving take its course but focus on healing. Stop focusing on what your ex is doing and focus on what you are doing. Learn how to let go.

Whether they are enraptured in a rebound relationship with a would-be superstar or are touring the Vegas Strip, ask yourself what it really matters what they are doing? Should your focus really be on them? If they are going out on a rebound or partying up a storm, it shouldn’t matter. And what does it really say about them? Are they really emotionally secure or are they making grand gestures to show how “over” you they are, in effect showing a deeper side of how not over you they really are? If they were so over you why would they go through all of this trouble to show that they were?

Sometimes we focus on our ex as a target for the horrible emotions a breakup puts you through. We want an outlet and hating them becomes a good one. But it can also become an obsession and take away your own power, and your life. Your goal is to rejuvenate yourself. Become the person you’ve always wanted to be. Make this a transformative experience. Learn from it so you can make your next relationship ten thousand times better than the last and you ten thousand times better than the person you were.

Sometimes you aren’t ready to accept that things are over. But that is strictly part of the grieving process. Even at its worst you know brighter days are ahead. The pain subsides little by little each day, wearing away like a season until that season is gone. Let it go naturally of its own accord. Explore where the hurt really comes from. Is your ego bruised? Was it really this person? Was there some other deep seeded thing that surfaced in this relationship? Explore the root of your jealousy and use it to find out what issues and baggage you brought to the table, how you can own those, and release them from it. Through this transformative experience, that of self-discovery, you will ultimately become free. For more advice read, How to Stop Being Jealous and Insecure: Overcome Insecurity and Relationship Jealousy by Michele Gilbert.

It’s Peak Online Dating Season

ONLINE-DATING

It’s Peak Online Dating Season

Did you look around the New Year’s party for someone to kiss once the ball dropped? It might feel lonely but in fact, you’re in good company. Experts say that now is peak online dating season, so it’s time to dust off that profile and dive right in. The “season” lasts between now and Valentine’s Day. Researchers at Facebook a short while ago determined that the time people are most likely to change their relationship status is between the months of January and February. Some even secretly try out online dating at this time and swear it off at other times of the year. Two of the biggest dating websites, Match.com and Plenty of Fish, say their peak season starts on January 4th between 5 P.M. and 8 P.M. Match.com gets even more exact saying peak traffic begins at 7:52pm CST on Jan. 4. People find after the rush through the holidays that they have lots more time, time they use on their computers, tablets and smart phones.

The other reason is despite the tidings of good cheer, for many it’s lonely during the holiday season. One-third of 18-34 year olds were lonesome over the holiday break in the UK, according to one survey. And singles often see happy couples and yearn for someone in their life. This left-over feeling from the holidays is invested anew in the search for a significant other, come the turn of the New Year. But for a limited time only. So what website will give you the best chances at finding someone worth your time? In terms of sheer numbers, Match.com is one of the biggest, with 2.4 million users in North America alone. If you’d rather meet someone with an exotic flare, Plenty of Fish boasts 9 million users worldwide. It shouldn’t be hard to find a date on either of these sites. But one that you make a connection with, that’s going to take a little something extra. After New Year’s it’s a rush to find a date. But after Valentine’s Day, interest drops off. Love of all kinds fills the void after the holidays. Another thing that researchers have seen an after-holiday spike in, porn searches. Condom sales and conception rates both see a spike around the holidays and in their aftermath as well.

Researchers believe that the dark and gloomy winter months make us consumed with our tablet or laptop. The New Year is also a chance for a clean slate and a fresh start. Why not a new start to your love life? This is when we consider what we really want in life. It is also a time of reflection where we review what the past year was like and make sure we don’t make the same mistakes again, dating or otherwise. Some people lunge into online dating only to be disappointed. Just do it for fun. Don’t take it too seriously. Try not to do it for more than an hour per night or else you’ll get burned out. Really strive to look for people you have lots in common with. You really want someone you can talk about things with, and share what you love together. Don’t serial date. You’re likely to get burned out. If you do, take a break then start again anew. Make sure your profile says something positive and either funny or insightful to draw the right person in. Have it beta tested. Let a close friend read it. For more tips and exciting facts about online dating be sure to read, Love at First Click: The Ultimate Guide to Online Dating by Laurie Davis.

Finding Happiness Post-Divorce

LIFE-AFTER-DIVORCE

Finding Happiness Post-Divorce

After a divorce, your life will change forever. It’s a monumental pivot. But just like any other metamorphosis in your life, how you choose to see it is really up to you. It can be devastating and leave you a husk of your former self, bitter, depressed and alone. Or you could see it as a brand new start and springboard yourself into the life you’ve always dreamed of. The choice, as with any other choice when it comes to perspective, is up to you. Lots of people experience a divorce as a positive chance in one’s life. Lots of people in a recent Reddit thread talked about how divorce had had positive aspects in their life. Some were even happier years after the divorce took place. Some people talked about higher self-confidence, a sense of inner peace, the ability to pursue their dreams unencumbered. Sure sadness would creep in now and again, just like for anyone else. But the good days outweighed the bad. It seems tough to look at the positive aspects of a divorce while you’re going through it, especially if it’s a long drawn-out process with lots of painful things brought up, revenge tactics or a tit-for-tat mentality. But there is light on the other side of the courtroom door.

There are lots of couples who stay together for the kids. They think the children don’t know that they fight. But it turns out the kids always know somehow all along. A high conflict relationship is definitely not good for the kids. Studies have shown that having children of divorce fare much better than those living in a high conflict household. Even in a low conflict household, children can also sense when the parents aren’t happy. Pursuing happiness isn’t only important for you, it’s also a great lesson to teach your children. Would you want them to wallow in an unhappy marriage in order to make you happy? So don’t put this undue burden on them. In fact, you may have a better relationship with your ex and your children’s parent than you would when you two lived together. There are some couples that are great but just can’t live together. It has something to do with their personalities. The fighting over little things goes away once you are divorced and you can begin to focus on what’s important for the children and on what other decisions you have to make together. Remember to take it day to day. You choose how much you can handle each day. Go through your own healing process but make sure you come out stronger, happier and better adjusted at the other end. For more advice read, Growing Through Divorce by Jim Smoke.