“Oh my god, I’m alone. ALONE.”
“I’m single…I haven’t been single in years; I don’t even know how to be single anymore!”
“I’m a failure, what’s wrong with me?”
Does any of this sound familiar? I know when I found myself single after 13 years of marriage, I sure felt this way.
Whether it was a long time coming or a complete surprise, divorce is sure to stir up some major feelings. It’s completely natural to feel panicked once the dust settles. After all, you’re beginning a new chapter in your life and change, even when welcomed, can bring anxiety caused by uncertainty.
What often adds to this anxiety is the pressure from well-intentioned friends and family encouraging us to “get back in the game,” or “get over it” or “let it go and just move on.”
I’m not here to tell you that you should just pick yourself up, dust yourself off and move on with things. In fact, I’m here to tell you that you should expect it to take a good while to recover from the emotional trauma of a divorce. Shocked? I thought so.
Are you relieved to hear that you aren’t expected to have it all together right away?
The truth is…we never have it all together! I am 52 years old, and I still have moments when I am a “HOT MESS!”
In fact, it is the worry of not having it together we need to let go of! Be a HOT MESS for a while. It is ok!
In fact, it is necessary…because these feelings of not having it all together will provide you with exactly what you need most:
Introspection: the examination of one's own conscious thoughts and feelings.
Oh, wait…are you hoping for a quick fix?
I don’t have a quick fix for you; and even if I did, I would beg you to not use it!
A quick fix will rob you of a journey into yourself that will ultimately produce some of your greatest treasures.
What I can do is provide you with 6 steps that will make the journey back to amazing you easier.
6 Steps To Finding Yourself After Divorce
- Give yourself time to grieve. Even if you were the one to initiate the divorce, it still represents a loss. Grief can take up a lot of energy. Acknowledge that you may be feeling depleted, honor that feeling, and give yourself permission to take things slow.
- Rediscover your old self. What were your hobbies and activities before your marriage? Did you give anything up or neglect certain interests while you were married? Revisiting things that made you happy prior to your marriage is an important step on this journey.
- Discover something new. Is there anything you’ve always wanted to try but never made the time for? Now is the time! No more excuses, just do it. Don’t have anything in mind? Reach out to us in the comments and we’ll be happy to supply some great ideas to get you on your way.
- Embrace being alone. There’s that word again…why do we place such a negative connotation on that word? It’s time to stop and realize that learning to enjoy your own company is a glorious thing. You may need to dig deep to uncover what it is that makes YOU happy but just think of how wonderful is it that you are at a point in your life where you are being encouraged to be “selfish” and think of your own happiness. Indulge yourself!
- Let go. Do your best to let go of the bitterness, the regret, the “what if’s” and “why’s.” Let go of the drama. Invite forgiveness. Practice mindfulness and open yourself up to a world of possibilities and new experiences.
- Surround yourself with people who love and support you. It is connection with others that provides us with new hope and the strength to carry on. Be intentional about creating it for yourself. Plan get-togethers with friends and family. Also, seek support outside of family and friends for a broader perspective on life. We are creating a new community called SAMBA for just this reason.
I would like to leave you with the following passage by Margaret Paul, PhD, and invite you to reflect on her words. Please, really take the time to let them soak in.
“We are not our wounded self. No matter how empty, boring, judgmental, angry, depressed, anxious, irritated, insensitive, uncaring, shut down, withdrawn, resistant or abusive we are at times, we are not our wounded self…It is your job as a loving adult to embrace and heal your wounded self, rather than allow your wounded self to define who you are. As long as you allow your wounded self to define who you are, you will feel inadequate and unlovable. You will pull on others for the love and attention that you are not giving to yourself. You will make others responsible for defining your worth…As you treat yourself lovingly, you will stop taking others’ behavior personally. Your fears of rejection will drop away. You will know that if someone rejects you, it does not reflect on your essential worth.”
-Margaret Paul, PhD
And the best news of all…
The day will come when you’re not asking, “Who am I?” anymore; and instead, saying: “Oh, here I am. What’s next?!"
Don’t waste another minute!
Get started uncovering your personal gifts right now!
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