While getting a divorce can be stressful and cause grief, it’s not healthy to maintain a relationship that’s no longer mutually beneficial. Realizing you cannot stay with a partner you originally made a lifetime commitment to is emotionally challenging, but it does not mean you have failed. Sometimes people grow apart and need to separate for their mental well-being. Here are some of the top ways to navigate a divorce.
1. Give Yourself Time and Space
Accept that you may not be 100% your usual self for a while. Mourning is not a linear process, and you could struggle with intense emotions like anger, frustration or anxiety. Acknowledge these feelings and their complexity, and be aware that they will lessen over time. Ultimately, you will get through this grieving period and be able to move forward.
2. Don’t Go It Alone
Getting a divorce may cause feelings of isolation and fears about what the future may hold. Sharing your feelings with friends and family can help preserve your mental well-being and help manage your stress levels during this time. Consider joining a support group where you can talk to other newly separated or divorced people. Seek therapy if you feel you need advice from a neutral third party.
3. Practice Self-Care
After a divorce, you may experience situational depression caused by having to adjust to a new reality. While situational depression typically lasts for a shorter time than clinical depression, it can still adversely affect your health, wellness and quality of life. Part of successfully navigating your divorce involves treating yourself with compassion. Make time for healthy activities like exercising, meditating and eating a balanced diet. Don’t self-medicate with drugs and alcohol, which will ultimately cause more problems in your life.
4. Find New Hobbies
Now’s the time to discover things you enjoy doing as a single person. Whether you’ve always wanted to dabble in photography or learn a new language, there’s a world of possibilities waiting for you to explore. Sign up for a class, volunteer in your community and make new friends. You may connect with a whole new part of your identity after a divorce, which will make the transition to single life easier.
5. Don’t View Your Marriage as a Failure
Though divorce has lost some of its stigma over time, many people still view the end of a marriage as a defeat, which can prevent divorced couples from moving forward with their lives. Instead of viewing the dissolution of your relationship as a failure, it’s more constructive to think of it as something that is no longer serving your needs. You can still look back fondly on the aspects of your marriage that brought you joy or allowed you to experience personal growth.
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Simultaneously receiving treatment for a co-occurring mental health disorder and addiction is crucial. Many dual-diagnosis cases start when someone starts using alcohol or drugs to cope with symptoms of an illness like depression or anxiety. At Pillars Recovery, our experienced treatment staff will help you address all facets of your mental and behavioral health and equip you with the tools necessary to prevent a relapse. Our advanced clinical offerings allow you to receive a customized care plan in a beautiful California beachfront setting. Take the first critical step on your recovery journey and contact us today.