In a time when you feel like no one has your back, it’s important to take care of yourself. This post will outline 7 best practices for looking after yourselves during divorce. They are as follows: 1) get enough sleep 2) eat healthy 3) invest in yourself 4) talk about what you’re feeling 5) exercise 6) make sure you see friends and family 7) set boundaries. It is not easy to make yourself a priority during such a stressfull life event but it can really help if you take time for the following things.
1. GET ENOUGH SLEEP This is self explanatory, but it must be mentioned! A divorce can really take its toll on you (and the kids!). You need to make sure that you are getting enough sleep each night. If you’re not sleeping well then there’s no chance of keeping yourself in a healthy state of mind. And even as adults we know how difficult it is when we haven’t had enough sleep so imagine how hard it is for children who require and depend more on their parents for guidance and support. So do yourself and your kids a favor – get enough sleep!
2. EAT HEALTHY Try and avoid eating in front of the television – it’s a bad habit that can add lots of extra calories to your diet. The best way to fight stress is through self-love so try and make time every day just for yourself, even if this means taking a bath with some candles or reading a book you’ve always wanted to read. It’s easy to neglect self-care when you’re going through one of life’s biggest challenges but self-love really is important because during the divorce process as well as afterwards many people find themselves turning to food and cigarettes as coping mechanisms. It may seem like an obvious point to make about self care during divorce, but eating healthy, limiting alcohol and not smoking can help you feel better physically.
3. INVEST IN YOURSELF There are many self-development courses available that can help you feel better self-confident and more worthwhile. These can range from self esteem courses to self development ones such as assertiveness training, business development, personal presentation skills and even public speaking workshops! If there’s something that you’ve always wanted to learn then now is the time to get out there and do it!!
4. SPEAK TO SOMEONE It may be useful to speak confidentially with a professional counsellor or therapist if you’re feeling overwhelmed by emotions or depressed, but don’t ignore your mental health during this difficult time and never feel ashamed to ask for help. There is always someone you can speak to and it’s much better to admit that you have a problem at this time than hide the pain away.
5. EXERCISE Exercise helps relieve stress, releases endorphins which will boost your self-confidence and self esteem as well as helping relieve depression. If possible then do something physical everyday but even if this isn’t possible, try and get out for a 30 minute walk every day or take a boxing lessons or dance classes – just be active! You should also consider joining an athletic club so that you can meet others with similar interests. Joining a sports group/club will give you something else to think about while helping you stay in shape; just make sure not to overdo it too much exercise can lead to exhaustion and make you feel worse.
6.SPEND TIME WITH FRIENDS A vital self-care tip is to spend time with friends and family. Spending time doing what you enjoy will help take your mind off things especially if it gives you the chance to de-stress, laugh and have fun. When you are around loved ones, their love can give both emotional support and comfort so be sure to let them know that they are important in your life during this difficult time for them as well. If while spending time with other people ,you find yourself just sitting there not really talking then try to engage more by listening and asking questions about the person – self-care is not all about you but others too! Just ensure that you don’t become too exhausted by socializing as being around people when feeling so emotionally drained.
7.SET BOUNDARIES As a self-care tip , setting boundaries is important. By setting boundaries on the way your ex treats you or if they try to get in touch with you, it can help to take back control of the situation that has been so much of an emotional upheaval within your life . Boundaries can also be healthy self – respect; for example my advice is not to accept verbal abuse from anyone – whether verbally abusive people are family members, friends, partners or strangers. Self esteem will come from knowing that we are no one’s doormat.
If you’re feeling low then do something special for yourself or ask your friends/family over for dinner, whatever feels right. Many people don’t reach out when they are feeling low, but remember your friends and family want to help you when they can. If you are somewhere without family joining a support group and making new friends can really be a helpful thing during divorce and after.