By Julia Sorensen
Divorce is devastating. But with the right tools, resources, and information, you have the ability to recover, to regain self-confidence and self-assurance. Here are five strategies that I have used with my clients to help them work successfully through a divorce.
Journaling is the first of our five strategies, something from which both men and women can benefit. The goal is to write down your emotions, your questions, your goals. I’ve found that people benefit even with as little as 15 minutes a day of journaling. It’s a time to be honest with yourself. And you can go over your entries with your counselor, if you have one.
Whether you find support in a friend, family member, close neighbor, co-worker, counselor, or through a support group, it is imperative that you have a support system that encourages you along the way. Every day, you will likely be faced with a different emotion; you may feel angry, sad, even devastated, at times. A good support system helps you manage these fast-changing emotions, offering friendship, guidance, or a shoulder on which to cry.
Professional counseling can make a big difference during a divorce. Even if the divorce was your idea, you can usually benefit from a therapist?s help in identifying underlying relationship issues. Counseling can help you determine what it was that made you unhappy in the marriage, or how to carry on in the future. Counseling often helps you keep your balance during a tumultuous time.
Too often, a divorced person will withdraw inside the house, sometimes for years. This can compound the problems. It’s typically a bad idea to start dating immediately, but a good idea to mingle and make new friends, both male and female. Go to concerts, sporting events, wine-tasting parties, volleyball games, or whatever you like, learning to again be comfortable in a social environment as a single person.
Quality Alone Time
Just as socialization is important, so too is quality alone time. This might mean ordering Chinese food and staying home to read a good book, treating yourself to a trip to the day spa for a facial and massage, or going to the driving range to hit balls. No matter the choice, allow yourself to fall in love with you, something most divorced people fail to do. In the end, you are your own best friend and supporter.
Reach Julia Sorensen through her website, http://www.thecbtcoach.com. She is the author of Overcoming Loss: Stories and Activities to Help Children Transform Grief and Loss (Jessica Kingsley Publishers).Tags: grief, hope