Divorce Coach's Guide to Beating the Divorce Blues
Author: Pav Lertjitbanjong
Divorce is one of the most traumatic events you can experience in your lifetime, and the effects can feel devastating. Divorcing seems to spell the end of hopes and dreams, for not only you but family and friends as well, often creating grief, guilt and shame for the divorcing couple.
It can also be very disruptive to your lifestyle. It is easy to see how such an overhaul of heart and life can create depression. But if left unchecked, depression can have harmful effects on your career, social life, self-image and health. Here are some tips to control depression before depression controls you.
You don’t need to be a social butterfly, but it’s important to stay connected with others. While engaging in small talk may be the last thing you are interested in, avoiding people will only sink you further into depression. And very likely, you will find yourself more energized and optimistic after a couple of hours out with friends. A good support system is also important for the healing process.
Now is the perfect time to get rid of all the excess things you’ve been hanging onto, weighing you down. While you are at it, get rid of all the memorabilia reminding you of your ex. It is time to move onward and upward. You will begin to feel renewed both inside and out as you unburden yourself and take control of your belongings and so much more.
Take that class you’ve always wanted to or try something completely new just for the sake of it. Starting a new hobby will take your mind off painful thoughts and bring some excitement into your routine. You might even make new friends or discover you are really good at something that you would never otherwise have tried.
Shake things up a little. Now you don’t have to run any activities you choose to do past your spouse. If you feel like watching that Chick Flick or Sci-Fi movie, go for it. If you want to watch it at a random time or in pieces, there is no one saying that’s a bad idea or they’d rather do something else. Enjoy your freedom and take the time to remember what made you you before you became an us.
Plan Your Future
So much divorce pain is wrapped up in the past, so turn your focus on the future. Planning your future can excite you about the possibilities that exist if you work towards set goals. Consider what you can gain from life rather than the losses you are enduring - and there are many. Planning can be as simple or as elaborate as you want, as long as you plan.
Be Kind to Yourself
Divorce can cause feelings of guilt, shame and failure. Be aware of your self-talk and whether you are filling your own head with criticisms. Sometimes we can be our own worst enemies. Additionally, learn to filter out the negative talk from others. Doubtless you will hear horror stories and cautionary tales from friends and family that won’t necessarily reflect reality and will only make you feel worse about your situation.
Allow Yourself to Grieve
Divorcing is inherently painful and no one expects you to bounce back after a day. Your emotional wellbeing requires a healing process that takes time. You may be tempted to feel something is wrong with you because your full range of emotions that bounce around, you don’t feel like yourself anymore or it is taking longer than expected to get back on your feet, emotionally. But if you find your thoughts becoming suicidal or you feel you need additional help, please consult a professional.
While it takes time to recover from the effects of divorce, during which the pain feels like it will last forever. But as time goes on you will feel less and less depressed.
Instead of seeing the divorce as a stumbling block, think of it as a stepping-stone. Keep reaching toward your goals and before you know it you may find yourself in greener pastures.