New Year, New You: Life After Divorce

The holidays can be difficult and trying for many families, especially for those dealing with relationship stress or divorce.

Whether you’re recently divorced or going through a divorce, the new year is the perfect time to re-frame the way you think about your future. A few small changes to the way you think can vastly improve your life, your happiness, and your well-being.

Easy Ways to Cope with Life After Divorce

  • You’ve heard it a million times: be positive.If you’re going through a dark time, hearing “be positive” seems like trite over simplification, but people are generally inclined respond emotionally to what our bodies do. If you vow to smile, calm down, and stop complaining, you will feel better. At the very least, it will make you a more approachable person, and your interactions with friends and family will be much easier.
  • Don’t fixate: Let 2011 be the year where you stop dwelling and fixating on the details of your divorce and your relationship. Replaying arguments and stressful situations causes pain. Focus on moving forward, and vow not to dwell on events that hurt you in the past. If something hurt you in the past, thinking about it over and over will only hurt you in the present.
  • Bonus: 5 Tips for not going broke after divorce
  • In life, there is no audience: During a divorce you go through every little detail of your life with your ex, your family law attorney, and probably your family and friends. While these details can be important to the court, in reality, you’re not being scrutinized by every single person you interact with. Keep in mind that other adults probably don’t have time in their busy lives to judge your every move. The failures and “crazy” moments you have are much more pronounced in your own mind, so there’s no need to feel self-conscious about them forever. 
  • Develop a strong network: If you’ve separated from a spouse or have recently divorced, it’s natural to feel lonely, but don’t let it last forever. Be brave enough to seek out new friends, even if you feel like a fish out of water at first. 
  • Celebrate: If you’ve lived with sadness and stress, you’ve probably developed some habits that keep you from feeling good. Fight your instincts, and be willing to celebrate your life, even if it feels wrong at first. Get out of the house, talk to people, smile, and think about the amazing future you can have. 

No matter how you feel right now, remember that your divorce will end, and your sadness won’t last forever. A new year is the perfect time to reinvent yourself and to become the person you want to be.