Self-care is important for wise management of your divorce case. No matter how overwhelmed and sad you may feel, take care of your greatest resource — yourself — so that you can best get through the divorce process.
If you are overly stressed, you may be disorganized or forgetful of facts that your divorce attorney needs to understand. You may be unable to follow your lawyer’s advice about not antagonizing your spouse, or not bad-mouthing him/her in front of your children. You may be unable to present yourself calmly before the custody evaluator or Oklahoma family court judge. Taking care of your stress is smart.
If you are having trouble handling the stress of the divorce, speak with your doctor about your stress and getting the right amount of sleep, proper diet, exercise and medication, if necessary. You may also wish to consider a divorce recovery class or speaking to a divorce counselor. Be cautious about overusing alcohol or beginning new romantic relationships at this time. If you have children, focus on being a good parent.
Some additional techniques to manage self-care include:
- Join a support group. It can be immensely helpful to talk with others who are walking in your shoes and have similar fears and concerns.
- Consider mediation for your divorce case. It can lead to better communication and fewer confrontations with your ex-partner.
- Rather than withdrawing socially, surround yourself with friends. Friends are important for providing support, perspective and practical help.
- Learn how to balance giving and receiving. You don’t have to be perfect.
- Don’t beat yourself up over what you should have done. Stop the negative self-talk and guilt. You can’t change the past, so try to learn the lessons the present offers, then focus on a positive future.
- Set aside time just for yourself to help you find balance.
- Don’t worry about what other people might think.
- Declutter your environment. If something is too painful to look at or is useless to you now that you are alone, throw it out.
- Determine what most needs doing and in what order. Then break up the tasks into smaller steps that can be done in several shorter periods of time. That way larger tasks seem more manageable and you are more likely to get them done.
- If you have been a stay-at-home mom and out of the workforce for some time, you probably will need to go back to school for training in a marketable skill. Bringing home your own money is satisfying and creates independence. It also sets a positive example for your children.
- Work toward forgiveness and moving on. Don’t deny your anger, but don’t let it drain your energy by getting stuck in resentment.
- Don’t be scared of going out on your own and opening up to new people.