After my divorce, I did a ton of self reflection. I also ugly cried for days and days. I knew I made so many mistakes. Trust me, looking at yourself and owning your own shit is HARD. When we turn the focus inward, we usually just see what we don’t like. Coming to grips with that is a beautiful obstacle. Beautiful because you learn who it is that you want to be. You have an opportunity to start to being that.
I believed in love and I wanted marriage again one day. To prepare myself for that step, I needed to be worthy of him. I had to clear out my skeletons in the closet. Open the doors and set them free. I needed to be the person that can attract the love I wanted in my life.
If you are willing to do the work you can have a more fulfilling life on the other side of divorce. The key is to do it all mindfully. When anxiety creeps up on you and your thoughts start to spin out, tune in on it and ask it what is its purpose? When we use our brain to question our thoughts and feelings, we uncover more information. More information is good. It keeps us from thinking one thought over and over again triggering negative emotions.
Self discovery is hard work. But when you embark on this journey, you won't turn back and put your head back in the sand, you commit. You will see things differently and the Universe supports it by paving the way. At this point you know there is no turning back because your life has already become a little better because of it.
I have compiled a list of 7 steps to Thrive Through Divorce, based on the findings I had stumbled through myself.
1. Get control of your emotions and your actions.
This may sound like a no-brainer. But learning to do this is tough. It is time to stop letting your Ex trigger your emotions, or anyone else for that matter. You are in control of this. It is not the actions of others that triggers your emotions, it is the thought you apply to their actions. Learning to calm your thoughts and spark new and better ways to think of things will help you cope. It will also make you a more optimistic and joyful person.
Read “Loving What Is” by Byron Katie in order to really grasp this concept and put it to practice.
2. Gain independence.
Becoming completely self-sufficient is an amazing feeling. Pay all your bills on time and reducing your debt. Having careful boundaries with your ex and other family members will help you feel more in control of your own life in this area. Most importantly, learn to love your alone time and self care. All these are important aspects of creating your independence.
Recommended reading “The Single Woman” by Mandy Hale. This is a great read, but keep in mind it is for a twenty-something audience. Pretend you are your twenty-something self as you read it, snort giggles and all.
3. Processing Change
It is important to make yourself a priority in your life where maybe before everyone else came first. You also need to process your relationship, figure out where you yourself went wrong and how you would do it differently next time. Learn to let go of things that are in the past. Holding on just keeps it in the present.
To help you in this step I highly recommend reading Brene’ Brown’s “Rising Strong”. All of her books are amazing works that exemplify how being your most vulnerable self is what real strength and courage looks like.
4. Step into your power.
Learn to feel confident in your decisions, in your skin, and with your abilities. Set goals and start challenging yourself to hit them. Learn from your mistakes rather than beat yourself up over them. Try again, try harder. Win some and lose some, but be proud of yourself for trying.
Absolute must read for every divorcee’, “Eat, Pray, Love” by Elizabeth Gilbert. This is a brilliant journey through divorce, loss and finding ones true self.
5. Be the best version of you.
You know who you want to be, so be that. You have values, so figure them out and live by them. Do not compromise your values and your character for anyone or anything. As you do this your confidence builds and you will actually start to like yourself more. Be your highest self, tap that resource and be it as much as you can. When you have risen to be that great version of you, you are finally in a place to attract a mate that is equal in greatness to you.
A powerful book that will help you distinguish between who you are and the negative voice in your head is “The Untethered Soul” by Michael Singer. This book will help you get out of your own way and create a life worth living.
6. Plan your future.
Look ahead and figure out what you want. Is it aligned with your values? Does it serve a higher purpose for you in life? Go for it. Reach for the stars and keep going. Writing down these goals or creating a vision board is a great way to creatively connect to our wants.
I have read this book at least once per decade of my life. It is the book everyone should have on their shelf, Stephan Covey “7 Habits of Highly Effective People.” You will learn real strategies that you can implement to start having a more mindful and proactive life.
7. Find your spirit path.
Connecting to a higher power lifts our spirit. How ever you connect, whether it is at church, synagogue, meditation, yoga, or a walk in the woods. Connecting to spirit is uplifting and directly feeds our soul. Sharing that connection with others in a community that shares our beliefs lifts us even higher.
As you work your way up this list focusing on these elements of self-examination in your life, you will find more fulfillment and joy. Your life will have more rewards and has the potential to be great. By examining your life and seeking out ways to make it better, it will surpass all your prior experiences.
What does any of this really have to do with divorce? I found that that at the rock bottom of my divorce I found a launching pad into my new life. Socrates may have seemed a tad harsh when he said, “the unexamined life is not worth living.” But I can agree that it was not a happy and joyful existence as the conscience life I am living today!
The good news is… it is never to late to start your self-examination. I promise you it is a journey that is well worth the ride.
Need help on this journey? I’m here to support you. Whether it is one on one sessions or my group program called Thriving Through Divorce. There is an option for you to make this journey the most thoughtful, accessible and powerful. Look into the future at your absolute best self, she is ready for you to take this amazing journey.