Divorce is painful, but it is not the end of your life

Divorce is hard – whether you are the one who wanted ‘out’, or not.

It has the ability to turn your whole world (and heart) upside down – as you struggle to come to terms with your new self and life, post marriage.

Having said that, divorce shouldn’t be your ‘breaking point’ – but rather, an opportunity to change direction and start afresh.

Easier said than done, we know.

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But, if there’s one thing that women are, it’s resilient – we’re known for our ability to move forward from most of life’s challenges in a positive way.

Including divorce…

According to Divorce and Family Mediator, Nadia Thonnard, the key to moving forward in a positive way is a balanced frame of mind. Ultimately, it’s not about what you are losing (or gaining for that matter), but how you hold on to your sense of self and move forward in a way that embraces change.

Nadia shares eight steps that will help you make positive changes to your life after divorce:

  1. Be reasonable: Do not try to compensate for what you may lose. You need to realise that some losses cannot be replaced, and that is OK.
  2. Strive for balance – especially when it comes to your emotions. Experiencing a rollercoaster of emotions is normal,  but if you let them tip at one end of the spectrum, you will struggle to manage them.
  3. You are in competition with no one: There will always be people with opinions (and opposing ones at that!). Don’t mind anyone. Just aim to be better than you were before, for yourself.
  4. Take control: Establish what it is that you can and can’t control. Focus on what you can control, and learn to ‘let go’ of the rest.
  5. Understand your needs: We all have needs – for love, belonging, power, freedom and fun – to name but a few. When last did you put your needs first? Your needs need to be satisfied – and now’s the time to do so!
  6. Know what you want: Coming out of a divorce has shown you exactly what you don’t want – so, use the time alone to figure out what you do want; for yourself, for your kids, for your career and for your life in general.
  7. Commit: If you seek change, you have to commit to making it happen. If you, for example, want to get into better shape post divorce, you’re going to have to commit to a healthy diet and exercise. It’s not going to happen for you.
  8. It’s not the end of your life: Acknowledge this. Yes, separation is painful, but it is not the end. Being stuck in the process of your divorce (and letting it dominate your life) is no better than staying in a bad marriage. Surely you are keen to explore what your life could be like, if you choose to be happy.