Divorce can take its toll on the body and the mind, tugging at a variety of emotions and heightening worries about finances and family. We thought we would offer some excellent survival tips.
First, get real. Divorce will not be a quick and painless process completed in a few weeks. Accept this up front and you will find yourself much less frustrated and much better prepared. It will take time to compile all relevant information, stake out positions on every issue, and try to negotiate a settlement with your spouse or prepare for a trial.
Second, take care of yourself. Because of the stress of divorce, you will be more susceptible to physical and emotional illness. Take all opportunities to work out and decompress, eat right and see a counselor or therapist if necessary.
Third, strategize. The best way to prepare for the element of surprise is to anticipate the surprise – figure out what your spouse might want to do on all of the issues, and to what extent your spouse might use “dirt” to rile you. And once you have listed the surprises, work on diffusing the impact of all of them.
Fourth, remember who you are. This may seem like a strange tip, but in a divorce you will have a variety of allegations come up and questions that may go to your fitness as an earner or parent. Hearing all of these negative challenges can make you start doubting yourself. Do not fall into that trap. Keep a positive and realistic sense of self as you move through the divorce.
Fifth, count to ten. Before you make any big decision on any issue in the case, step back and take some time to evaluate it. Do not rely on snap judgments in the heat of the moment. Take some time for reflection and decide if you can live with the outcome.
Sixth, trust your attorney. It is only natural that because your life is on the line – your finances, your children – you will feel like you want to run the show. But if you would not operate on yourself, do not lawyer for yourself. Instead, trust in the insight of your attorney who has spent years training for these situations and has the experience to guide you through difficult choices.
Seventh, do not get stuck in the now. Many times spouses in divorces will lose the forest for the trees, wanting to secure a big “win” in a fight on one issue without realizing another issue had much greater significance. Think about your life after divorce and how your decisions allow you to support yourself and continue relationships with your children for years to come.
Finally, do not be afraid to reach out for help. Divorce is very tough in so many ways and you will have days where you feel awful. At those times you need to have family and friends you can rely on to be there for you. Know who these people are and do not hesitate to allow them to help.
If you have questions about divorce, contact us – we can help.