10 Ways to Move on After a Divorce
San Diego, CA – No one goes into a marriage assuming it will end, yet this outcome happens all the time. “Though divorce can be a lengthy and draining process, it’s the aftermath that can sometimes be the worst,” says John Griffith of Griffith, Young, and Lass, a family law practice serving the San Diego, Carlsbad, and Leucadia areas. “People sometimes assume that since the legal process is over, things will be easier for them, but that’s not always the case.”
Although every divorce is unique, it is almost always a difficult time for the now-defunct couple. Below is some advice to help you make the best of your new beginning as a single person.
- Figure out how you feel. “This is a whole new point in most people’s lives,” Griffith explains, “so there can be a wide array of emotions you may not have previously experienced.” If possible, seek out friends, family, or a counselor to see you through this challenging time.
- Find a way to get your feelings out. Whether you’re angry, depressed or grateful, it’s important to express yourself. You can take up a new workout class like boxing, spinning or yoga; you can try your hand at painting or photography; meditation or writing can also allow you to release complex emotions.
- Forgive your ex, if needed. “When we hang onto anger or resentment, we’re not getting back at our ex, we’re only hurting ourselves,” says Griffith. “Once you let that go, you’re really doing yourself a favor.”
- Work out your finances. Depending on your situation, you may want to hire a financial counselor to assist you, especially if you weren’t previously the primary provider in your household. Furthermore, unexpected expenses can suddenly add up after a divorce. It’s best to work with a trusted friend or professional to help you get financially squared away.
- If you’re a single working parent, find the best caretakers possible. This may be anyone from a grandparent to a close neighbor to a reputable daycare center. “You’ll definitely feel more peace of mind if you know your child is in good hands,” notes Griffith. “When you feel confident that your young one is safe, healthy, and happy, you’ll be able to relax significantly more.”
- Take care of yourself. While settling into your new life, be sure to take time for the things you value. Like to relax and watch a good movie? Indulge and don’t worry. Enjoy going for long walks and just getting some fresh air? Go for it. And don’t underestimate the importance of a good night’s sleep. Griffith concurs: “While it may sound cliché, high-quality sleep is one of the best things you can do for your physical and mental health.” If eight hours seems unattainable at first, aim for six or seven hours a night and go from there. Diet is also crucial in times of stress. Overeating or relying on substances like alcohol or tobacco may assuage your pain in the short-term but consider your long-term well-being.
- Manage your new responsibilities as well as possible. Keeping track of your now-altered daily routine can assist you in adjusting better after a divorce. There are plenty of calendar apps to help you manage your time. Financial apps can make balancing your budget much more manageable.
- Pick up a new hobby. Websites like Meetup.com can help you find people in your area with similar interests. It might be fun to join a rock-climbing group, a book club, or a social meet up to enable you explore another side of your city. You can also network with others who have recently separated or divorced, enabling you to create a community of those who understand your current situation.
- Forgive yourself. Even if you aren’t at fault for your divorce, take time to be kind to yourself. Though it may take time, accept what has happened, allow yourself plenty of time to mourn, and then know when you’re ready to forgive and move on.
- When you’re ready to date again, decide if you are looking for something long- or short-term. “Many people aren’t looking to get married again right after a divorce, but some are ready for another long-term commitment,” notes Griffith. “Be honest with yourself and what you do –and don’t—want at this point in your life.” When everything has finally settled down, you will know what you need in order to move on.
If you’re in the San Diego area and dealing with divorce, schedule a free consultation with John Griffith or one of his team members at Griffith, Young, and Lass. This knowledgeable family law firm can help you with this difficult time in your life.
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