#1) There's not just one way to get divorced.
Individuals looking to end their marriage have more choices than ever to meet their state's requirements for filing for divorce in court. The knee-jerk reaction of retaining an attorney right away may or may not be the best route for you and your family. To understand all of your choices and options, it's imperative that you become an educated consumer. Whether you choose a “do it yourself” divorce online or decide on a litigated battle in court, the choice you make can have a direct impact on the amount of time, money, and stress you expend.
Make sure to know your choices.
#2) Keep your emotions in check.
The life you envisioned when you got married is crumbling to the ground. This is hard and I get it. It's going to be really difficult to not let your emotions take over during the divorce process. When anger, sadness, frustration, rage, and or resentment are the driving force for your decisions and decision-making processes, you can end up completely misguided. Judges don't grant emotional justice so don't use the court system to seek justice from a cheating spouse or revenge because it may leave you even more disappointed. Divorce is a factual and unbiased process to distribute assets, spousal and child support, and custody and visitation rights to both parents. That's it.
#3) There is no “win-lose” in divorce.
Divorce is a chance to take action to make your life better so you can move on to more rewarding relationships. The process of divorce requires both spouses to define the terms of the divorce through some form of negotiation. But, negotiation in divorce is not easy, especially when one or both spouses engage in a “win-lose” approach. This nearsighted negotiating technique of “getting your own way” may well damage future relationships ultimately creating a “lose-lose” situation. Ending up in a place where mutual interests are discarded, parties refuse to continue to engage in negotiations and bitter disputes abound, is not where you want to be. Before proceeding into mediated negotiations or settlement conferences in your divorce, it is imperative that you get the support and guidance you need so you can be the best negotiator possible.
#4) Your ex will remain the parent of your children.
How you feel about your spouse should not impact how your children feel about their “mother” or “father”. Seeing your ex through your children’s eyes and working hard to be the best co-parent you can be, is the best gift you can give your children. Appreciating and supporting each other as parents for the well-being of your children will help minimize the impact of the divorce on these innocent bystanders. An essential component of this is to develop a healthy co-parenting communication process which ensures that neither parent puts the children in the middle of the divorce process. Avoid engaging in the “blame game” in an attempt to defame the other parent or alienating the children from the other parent. Children should be free to love each parent unconditionally.
#5) You are responsible for your own happiness.
Solely seeking happiness through others while negating the relationship you have with yourself will ultimately leave you without the personal resources of self-love, self-worth, value, regard, and resiliency, all of which are needed to move forward when relationships fail. Blaming others for your own unhappiness becomes a barrier to developing healthy and fulfilling future relationships. Taking responsibility for your own happiness means that you are also taking responsibility for your own emotions., which enables you to take control of your attitude and reaction. Whether your current relationship is no longer fulfilling, your own personal happiness is being compromised, or you are facing a divorce initiated by your spouse, do not place the blame squarely on the other party. Rather, take the steps needed to move forward by choosing fulfillment in yourself and your mindset.
Ready to learn more about the divorce process? Want to develop your personal happiness and become your “Best Self”? Be a part of a supportive community? Minimize drama and the pain of divorce? Gain the best tools for negotiating the terms of your divorce and be the best co-parent you can be for the well-being of your children?