Your new life - the things you absolutely must do - Part One

There are no easy solutions to the difficulties of life after divorce.  There is no list of surefire tips which will guide you effortlessly through the post divorce battlescape.

The burnt out building, the wasteland of divorceHowever, there are some ideas that will be useful whether you are trying to make your way through the post apocalypse wasteland or basking in the sunlit uplands of where you have always wanted to be.

There are many challenges to meet and much needs to be done to make the transition to a single (parent) lifestyle.  Everyone does it differently and that's good.  

The best advice is to work towards being in command and control of your life so that you make your own decisions and feel confident in doing that.

It is worth emphasising that being divorced is OK.  It really is.  The divorce rate is getting close to fifty percent which means that at any one time there are as many divorced people around as married people.  That's nice to know but a bit spooky.

beautiful rural sceneSo here goes with some helpful advice, choose what might work for you and forget the rest.

Clean out your cupboards
This refers to both the physical cupboards and those of the mind.  The physical ones are easier, chuck out as much as possible especially anything that reminds you of your ex wife or husband.  Keep only the stuff that is really important to you.  Be ruthless.

The cupboards of the mind are a rather different enterprise.  They will take longer dependent upon the circumstances of the divorce.  Much of life after divorce is affected by the baggage of the previous relationship and its breakdown.  Baggage handling is as much a problem for divorced people as it is for airlines!

Spend real quality time with your kids
Now that you are on your own it's a big adjustment to make.  Lots of unfamiliar things to do and new things to learn.  You might be a bit overwhelmed with everyday chores but try to keep going with the stuff that really matters.  Play with your kids; get involved in playing games, reading stories and using your imagination and theirs to create real memories.  Treasure these moments, they will last for the rest of your life and theirs.

Get your finances in shape
It's rare for either of you to come out of a divorce financially unscathed as most divorcing couples really cannot afford to get divorced in the first place.  Times are likely to be difficult so tightening spending and getting the best out of the financial resources you do have will be important.  All credit is expensive and credit cards are very expensive.  Do without if you possibly can at least until you have things sorted.

However, if you are the lucky recipient of a handsome divorce settlement then you will need some really good financial advice as to how to make that work for you, hopefully leaving enough left over for a few designer frocks and handbags or a vintage Harley Davidson. 

Look after yourself
It is time to take care of your body and your mind.  It's good advice to start with a visit to your GP and a rigorous post divorce check up.   He or she will definitely recommend taking regular real exercise and eating proper food.  That alone will make you feel much better.  When you feel fit and good, your problems will seem lighter and feel more solvable.

Take some time after divorce to look inward and try to understand more about yourself.  The new freedom of the single life will take time to come to terms with.  Go slowly and give yourself time to adjust to the new shape of your life.  Make time and space for you to become a new person ready for your new life after divorce.

Take it slowly towards a new relationship
Best not to rush into a new relationship.  This is a vulnerable time and not a good one in which to make relationship decisions.  Much as it might seem good to have someone in your bed many relationships which begin soon after divorce turn into unmitigated disasters.  However, when things are a little more in perspective a new relationship is a great way to take your new life after divorce forward into the sunlit uplands.


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