Research on stressful life events has show that getting divorced is the number two life stressor, following right behind number one, being widowed. If you’re going through a divorce it’s helpful to know what to expect during the divorce and how you can cope with the normal, yet painful challenges you may face.
Here are a few things you may experience while going through a divorce:
1. Feeling depressed, like you’ve failed. Feeling incredibly sad and having crying jags.
2. Feeling angry and resentful at your spouse. Thinking about how they failed you and/or the children. Replaying arguments in your mind over and over.
3. Self-esteem issues. Not feeling very good about yourself. Doubting your own decisions.
4. Finding it hard to concentrate, and losing motivation to get things done.
5. Difficulty sleeping.
6. Feeling anxious about the future—because things are uncertain on virtually every level: financial, child custody, living arrangements, etc.
Any or all of these things could be happening to you as you go through your divorce. And though they’re distressing, they’re normal and to be expected. Be gentle and caring with yourself. Though divorce can be an incredibly painful and stressful time, it’s also a time of great change and growth.
If you find yourself experiencing some or all of these issues, there are things you can do to help get through. Here are five clinically proven tips to help you cope:
This includes meditation, deep breathing, or journaling out your feelings. These three practices have been shown to create oases of peace and acceptance.
Sleep is very important when it comes to elevating your mood. When you’re depressed, however, sleep may be hard to come by. This is another reason to consider starting a regular relaxation or meditation program—these have been shown to help people sleep better. You can also try a warm bath with lavender oil and/or cutting off stimulating activities like checking email, texting, watching TV, or surfing the web a few hours before bedtime.
Exercise releases opioids, the all-natural painkillers in your biochemistry. Plus, hitting the gym regularly can help you feel better physically and mentally and release feel-good endorphins. To start, just try ten minutes of walking, stretching, or any kind of physical exercise and see what happens. (And it also helps you sleep.)
Imaginary conversations with your ex.
Clinical studies show that people who have imaginary conversations with their partners have more relief from grief than those who don’t. The conversations help them to say goodbye and process how they’re feeling. So try sitting down opposite an empty chair, then imagine your ex sitting there as you get things off your chest. Finish up by describing how brave you are to be processing all these things. Then bid him or her good-bye.
Consider starting in therapy or counseling. This can be a rich time of self-discovery. And sharing with a trusted, compassionate, and interested person also releases opioids in the brain. So your pain will lessen.
Practicing these five tips will help you process and work through your feelings and move forward beyond the divorce to a surprisingly great future.
If you’re having trouble dealing with the pain of divorce. you can also get support in a free phone or Skype coaching strategy session with a wise Love Mentor® coach at https://lovein90days.com/dating-coach/.