With divorce comes a vast variety of emotions. Unbeknownst to many of us, our lives have been shaken to it’s core and we are totally unprepared for the challenges that come along with the big bad enemy we call D-I-V-O-R-C-E! To be quite honest, it sucks! However, as we all know, after every rain shower, there is a rainbow. The same holds true for life after divorce. Problem is, we tend to hide from life after divorce. We tend to decide that we can no longer shine. We tend to accept what our temporary emotions are telling us and instead of making lemonade out of lemons, we stay stuck.
TMF Readers, can we talk? Albeit, divorce and remarriage both have many pitfalls. If you go to any library in your community you will find many books on the subject. However, no one book can prepare you for the injury you feel when divorce happens. With that, today, I want to give you a few tips on learning how to nurture your emotional and personal growth after divorce. As the title of this post reads, No One Can Grow In the Shade! What do I mean by this you might ask? Well, it’s simple. Staying stuck holds you down. It keeps you in the dark and forces you to keep assigning blame to yourself instead of truly evaluating the whole big picture. It keeps you from accepting what has happened and it keeps you from moving on. It keeps you from discovering the new person that you are and what personal gifts you have been blessed with.
Here are some tips for you to use in your journey:
- Reflect — but do not dwell. During my divorce, I kept a journal. Write down your feelings and leave them there. Capture what you think went wrong and learn from it. Using a journal to express yourself keeps you from making the huge mistake of being over-emotional around your children, etc. It is a form of release.
- Rebuild. Divorce can literally suck the life out of you — IF YOU ALLOW IT TO. Find things you enjoy (i.e., hobbies, personal time, vacations, etc.) and focus on yourself. In order to rebuild your life, you have to have inner strength and a main component of inner strength is taking care of yourself physically, emotionally and mentally. Find what you like to do and DO IT! Take time for the pleasures in life that give you peace.
- Eliminate and reduce stress/anxiety. This may be hard to swallow, but you are divorced. Yes, it’s over but your life is not. Worrying about what could have been or what should have been done or what you could have done differently isn’t going to change the fact that you are divorced. Take time to meditate on you. Get a massage, hit the gym, find a space in your house that is all yours and relax. Reduce your stress by writing down your feelings and then decide to move on. Part of your learning process means you don’t have to make the same mistakes again — that in itself will lessen your anxiety.
- Fight your fears. After divorce, people are so afraid to be alone that they, at times, jump from the frying pan to the fryer. Patience is key. Being alone doesn’t have to be the big ”fear” everyone makes it out to be. It is important to have time to redefine yourself. It is important to have time to rediscover what it is about you that makes you happy. It is important to reflect on how you can grow from this situation. You cannot do all of these very important things while at the same time jumping into a new relationship. It doesn’t and won’t work. Being alone and giving yourself your own undivided attention will build your self-esteem and self-worth.
TMF Readers, you cannot grow in the shade! In order to be truly happy, we have to be able to acknowledge and find that WE, as individuals, can fulfill our own needs. Hence, we can move on with our lives and become a better partner in our future relationships.
Peace & Blessings,