Ending any type of relationship causes a certain amount of anxiety and stress, but leaving a marriage takes stress to a whole new level. If children are involved it can be up to two years of stress, often followed by bad communication, or what is referred to as temporary insanity (which happens to even the sanest of us out there during this time). Here are some general tips I have put in place and share with my clients as we go on our coaching journey together.
1. Breathe – I like to teach clients simple breathing techniques that can be put into practice even in the most tense of situations. Just stop what you are doing or saying and inhale one deep belly breath, hold it for the count of five and slowly exhale, repeat this as many times as you need, feel your heart rate slowing and a restored a sense of calm. Meditation is also very effective for those who have the time to practice. Select a technique that works for you.
2. Communication – Firstly, put yourself in the other person’s shoes, consider what you are saying or putting forward. How would YOU feel if the shoe was on the other foot? Maybe you need to reframe what you are trying to say. As a divorce and separation coach I spend some time in session with clients asking them what they want to say and how they could reframe it in a less defensive more palatable way to get the outcome they are striving for.
3. Boundaries – setting clear boundaries with yourself, your friends, family, your children and your Ex, will help lessen stress, as well as ongoing long term unnecessary conflict. Rules around how you will both communicate email, phone or have face to face communication. Everyone is different, so figure out what line of communication is better for your situation. Avoid triggering one another and avoid the back and forth diatribe that is often unhelpful and can quickly get off track and turn nasty.
Other boundaries to consider putting in place for parenting cohesively, can be covered by putting together a parenting plan, which as a coach I can work on with you.
4. Exercise – your mental well-being is of utmost importance, especially becoming a single parent. Even if you are not a big exercise fan, find something that gets you moving and helps clear your mind. Walks on the beach, yoga, boot camp, a short run to expend excess emotional energy, and relieve some stress. A minimum of then ten minutes mins a day will make all the difference.
5. Time out – suddenly finding yourself surviving on one income limits luxuries, like holidays, pampering yourself, shopping etc. Find other inexpensive things you can do that still feel like you are pampering your soul and taking that time out so you can be a better parent. Long hot baths, giving yourself a facial, reading a good book, catching up with a friend by having a nice walk along the beach, go to a movie, bike rides.
6. Give yourself time to grieve and deal with the anger – you will go through all the stages of loss when a relationship ends. You can’t ignore it. Accept it, grieve it, and then move on! Let it go! There will be good days and bad but it does get easier as the months/years go by.
7. Journaling – it’s inexpensive therapy and a great ritual to begin with. Sit down daily or weekly and write it out! Get it out of your head and onto paper. Feelings, thoughts, and conversations you are having with yourself in your head…. Whatever is going on…? You will feel so much better getting it out. Make it a ritual and burn it after you’ve finished with it. Let it go! Tomorrow is another day.
8. New Relationships – Don’t rush out and look for someone to fill the void. You may kiss a few frogs that won’t turn into anyone remotely Royal and all this will do is set you back if things don’t work out. Take your time to rebuild your self-esteem, independence and resilience. Don’t add to the already mounting stress you have going on in your life. You will make a better partner to a new love once you have worked through all the issues that come with ending previous relationships. This takes time and sometimes means time alone with yourself to figure out who you are again, and what you really want out of a future partner. Make a list of your core values and then a list of the values and traits you would like in a future partner. Create a vision board or start a new journal of your ideal partner and your new life! Take your time so that you make the RIGHT choice next time around. Learn to love yourself more and learn to love your new life before embarking on new love!
If you would like some support with your own personal relationship breakdowns book a discovery session with me today, for a better you!