An insightful contributor to The Huffington Post blog has recollected her strategies on how to survive a divorce. Being a divorced woman herself, Jennifer Ball is able to share her experience with divorce and support those going through the process now with her own little divorce care package. Here are 9 things Ball suggests will help you move forward with your life post-divorce.
1) Read a book. Find a book that reflects your experience or takes you away from reality altogether. Ball suggests the book Heartburn by Nora Ephron. For her, it taught her how to “laugh through the tears” and find comfort in the characters from the book. When you find a good book, it will help alleviate the pressure to move on and be happy right after a divorce. It will ultimately help you follow through in the ups and downs of the characters in the book and refocus your attention.
2) Find therapy in what you love. According to Ball, she found therapy in writing a blog as she is going through her blog. It allowed her to vent as well as reflect on her experience. Her blog became a channel for her to advise other women who are going through the same situation as she is with reassurance and some laughter. By creating her blog, she unintentionally collected a group of followers who are interested in her approach to divorce. Ball’s blog became a bookmarked page for people on the internet for divorce support.
3) Sing a song. There are enough songs in the world that can convey the emotion you are feeling at any moment. Ball suggests to find a song you can escape to and let loose. For example, if you are feeling like you just want to yell, blast on a song and just sing with it with all your might. And if you’re feeling lost and confused, there are plenty of songs that you can cry to. Find some music that reflects your emotion and let it take you away.
4) Purchase something for your future. Whether it is a new car or pet, find something that will catalyze you into the future. For Jennifer Ball, she decided to get a dog and didn’t realize that her dog will soon become her #1 supporter. If you don’t have a pet already, it may be a good investment for you. Emotionally, pets are great at giving unconditional love. A pet will make you feel less lonely during the hardest of times.
5) Watch television. Submerge into the stories and lives of the characters of your favorite tv show. Whether it is reality tv or complete fiction. As Ms. Ball describes, it is “pure escapism” from what is going on in your life. Free your mind from the constant thoughts of your ex-spouse and your divorce and let the television take you away to a different world
6) Think of the (unlikely) quote that has left you feeling down about yourself. Remember who said that you are not good enough. Ball recollects the time when her spouse left her and the life they built together and uses that as fuel to push toward a better future. Use all the bottled up anger and frustration to keep you moving forward and wanting a better life than your life with your ex. Don’t allow the person who hurt you most have a better life than you. You have to strive to want more than what you had.
7) Cook up a storm. There are certain things that a person cannot duplicate from another person. Use that to your advantage and take pride in what only you can do and no one else can. If you have a recipe that everyone loves, don’t stop making it just because it brings old memories to the foreground. Instead, continue cooking these great dishes and continue your traditions. No one can ever get the recipe down like you. Remember, anyone who imitates you (and your cooking) is only showing the biggest form of flattery.
8) Find a space where you can get distracted. Whether you open up your own home or go out to your favorite hang out place, find a place where you feel comfortable enough to escape with your friends and have fun. Your married friends will have a kick out of escaping their own home and family chores too. It is great to surround yourself with people you can have fun with and not worry about your single life.
9) Look at the art your kids create. Although some children may still be scribbling, there are others who can express their emotions vividly on paper. Ball notes that her kids drew a picture of their family and only included their mom. Dad is, obviously, out of the picture. This also acts as a reminder that there is more to the divorce than just how it affects you. You are now supporting your children and they look up to you to be the sole provider. It puts your life in a different perspective and hopefully, you get inspired to make changes for the future of your family.