Ending a relationship can feel like a huge loss, but there is much to be gained from making a new start. And although it is healthy and advisable to go through the stages of grief in order to process the demise of your marriage, it is also healthy to take steps that move you forward. Not sure where to start? Consider these four steps to begin your post-divorce life.
1. Make a list of your guiding principles. Too often in relationships we set aside the things that are most important to us in order to get along or adapt to someone else’s vision for our lives. Now is your time to place a stake in the ground and re-claim what is truest to you. Your guiding principles may include the importance of family, your spiritual practice, and/or a healthy lifestyle. Consider what aspects of your life are essential to your well-being and happiness. If you have a positive outlook then perhaps optimism should go on your list of guiding principles. If you believe in sav-ing money for long-term goals or making vacation time a priority, put it on your list! Are you concerned about the environment and conserving resources? List it! Con-sider what brings you joy, and what feels most wholesome to you. Continue to build on this list as you move forward into your new life.
2. Create short- and long-term goals. Once you have a sense of your guiding principles this step will become easier. Determine what actions you need to take in order to abide by those principles that you hold most dear. This may mean a change of career, a move to a different locale, or simply adjusting your schedule so that you can live in accordance to your guiding principles. Don’t try to do everything at once! Set a reasonable time frames in order to accomplish your objectives and be open to adjusting them as needed.
3. Feed your body, mind, and soul daily. No matter your priorities, take into consideration how you are nurturing all aspects of yourself. On a daily basis begin to assess how well you were caring for your physical, mental, and spiritual Health. These three aspects of our human condition are best when in balance. For example, you don’t need to go on a diet or begin yoga classes. Simply consider the ways that you care for your body and maintain your overall health now and into the future. Like-wise, keeping yourself mentally fit through reading, learning new hobbies, or other stimulating activities will help you still feel more fulfilled and centered. And finally, consider what you do to feed your soul whether it’s listening to beautiful music, meditating, attending church services, or volunteering to help others, tending to your spiritual side is an important aspect of self care.
4. Examine your financial goals and aspirations. Similar to your guiding principles, a financial check-up will help you define where you are, where you were going and how are you were going to achieve your goals. Since divorce often creates a new financial scenario, you may need to make adjustments to your budget right away. Other long-term goals, such as retirement, may need to be reviewed as well. Work-ing with a trusted financial advisor can help you prioritize and get on the right track.
Although many aspects of your life may be in flux, by examining these four important areas, you can begin to live the life that you may have previously only imagined. Why not start today?