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Approaching Life After a Divorce


Published on September 30th, 2020

Undoubtedly, one of the most challenging hurdles one may have to overcome in life is going through a divorce. In addition to producing emotional pain and psychological stress, the divorce process often leaves recent or soon-to-be divorcees wondering, “How will I approach life after divorce?”

When you enter into a marriage, you naturally do so with visions, hopes, and dreams of how your new life will unfold. But after a divorce, whether it was self-initiated or not, you may be left feeling lost as those previous visions no longer align with your new path. At times it might seem difficult to navigate such a monumental life change, however when undertaken in a healthy way there are many ways to take steps towards enjoying a happy and fulfilling life after a divorce.

Steps for Rebuilding Your Life After Divorce

Following a set of steps or guidelines can help streamline a process, encourage healthy change, and keep you on track. Facing life post-divorce is really no different. If you are recently or soon-to-be divorced, we have outlined a few steps below that may help you navigate through this time. While these steps or suggestions are not designed to bypass the frustration or pain that can come with a divorce, it may help you approach it from a healthier perspective and allow you to move with the current, rather than fighting against it.

Do Not Fight the Feeling of the Loss of Your Marriage

Whether you were the one who initiated the divorce or not, it is completely normal to feel a substantial loss when the divorce is finalized. Give yourself all the time needed to experience these feelings, as healing almost always requires acceptance. Even if the marriage was unhealthy, you once held hopes and dreams for what it would be. It is perfectly acceptable to mourn the loss you experienced.

Find Coping Mechanisms That Work for You

Finding a way to help you cope with your divorce and new life, while facing the potential pain as well as any adjustments you may be experiencing is an important step to moving forward. Coping mechanisms are specific to an individual. This could be journaling about your feelings and experiences, exercising daily, or finding a new passion project in which to become involved. The key is finding what works for you so that you not only have the motivation to participate, but you actually find relief in the activity.

Lean on Your Support System

Ideally you already have found comfort in or leaned on your support system while going through your divorce process. Once your divorce is finalized, it can be extremely helpful to continue to lean on your family and friends for strength. It may take some time to feel comfortable being single, but it doesn’t mean you have to be alone.

In addition to your support system, if necessary, this may be a time where it would benefit you to talk to a therapist or counselor who can help you outline a process for jump-starting your new life in a healthy environment. Whether that be with a current therapist if you were seeing someone or finding a new therapist.

Get to Know Yourself Again

No matter how happy your marriage may once have been, undoubtedly everyone sacrifices a part of themselves when entering into a marriage. Similarly, after being one half of a couple for any period of time, it may be necessary to find out once again who exactly you are as an individual. Rediscovering your unique, individual identity can be an exciting aspect of life after divorce. Ask yourself questions that help you to identify your strengths, attributes, and desires. Since your goal is self-discovery, you can be completely honest with yourself.

Create and Execute Your Bucket List

As you discover the “new you” post-divorce, this will usually involve uncovering new, or possibly forgotten, life goals. What have you always wanted to do that perhaps you put on the back burner when you were in your marriage? Create a bucket list of experiences you would like to enjoy or undertake and set your sights on making them become a reality. The items may be big or small, and some goals may not be attainable right now due to finances or other life priorities. But you can reference your bucket list to develop important short, mid, and long-term goals that you can strive for in the future. This can help your post-divorce psyche and give you something to continue looking forward to while you are restructuring your life after divorce.

No Pressure Should You Decide To Date Again

The prospect of dating post-divorce can often be frightening (but also potentially exhilarating), and there truly is no right or wrong timeframe for when this should begin. You have to do what feels right for your comfort level, however, you should not feel any pressure to rush back into another long-term relationship or marriage.

Transitioning from Life After Divorce to Enjoying Life as It Is Now

Throughout the ups and downs of settling into your post-divorce life, remember that what may feel like a challenge now will eventually become your new normal. We all face seasons of change throughout life. Even though some of these seasons may be unfamiliar at times, there will be brighter days ahead. Once you have made it past the adjustment period, you will be on your way to enjoying your new life.

For more helpful information on the divorce process and life after divorce, visit our website.

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