Divorce hurts. Unfortunately, there’s no shortcut through the pain and process of divorce recovery. But, weathering the ups and downs of divorce is greatly supported by your capacity for resilience—the ability to adapt in the face of adversity. The good news is that everyone can develop and build resilience and, recovering from a divorce is the perfect timing to do that.
There are a lot of ways to build your resilience. The key is to find ways that work for you and adopt them as your go-to strategies for bouncing back—here are a few to try:
Look Ahead—When you’re in it, it feels like your pain will always be there. Know that your recovery has stages and an ending. Your pain will pass and eventually you will move on with your life. Visualize a scene from your future life and see yourself as happy, content and thriving. Be specific and write out what you’re doing, who you’re with and how you feel. Refer to this often and know that you will get there.
Accept Your Process—Remind yourself that what you’re feeling is normal and part of the process of recovering. Let yourself have low moments and down days without resisting or beating yourself up about it. Tell yourself, “Yep, I feel terrible right now and this is part of the recovery process, I’m right on schedule.”
Love Yourself Through It—Studies show that self-compassion can boost resilience. It’s the intention of being gentle and loving with yourself instead of harsh or critical. It’s directing your own warmth, kindness and understanding toward yourself in the face of your suffering. And, it’s pro-actively nurturing yourself by doing things that take care of your body, mind and spirit. Get plenty of sleep, eat well, take bubble baths and long walks–whatever makes you feel taken care of.
And, don’t forget to give yourself the gift of asking for help from divorce support groups, a coach or therapist and/or supportive friends. You will get yourself through this.
Deb Purdy, is a blogger, speaker, workshop leader and author of
Something Gained: 7 Shifts to Be Stronger, Smarter and Happier After Divorce.