As you prepare for divorce, you find yourself thinking about how life is going to change. Your marriage lasted for a decade, and you dated for five years before that. You think of yourself more as half of a couple than you do as an individual.
To help you make the transition into the single life, here are a few helpful tips:
- Take all the time you need. You don’t have to feel fine the day after your divorce gets finalized. You don’t have to go on a date a month later. There’s no timetable. Don’t stress yourself out by making one up. Instead, accept that it may take time and focus on what you need.
- Find out who you are. One of the most surprising things people find after divorce is that they have forgotten who they are. They’re so used to making joint decisions about what to eat, what to watch, what hobbies to enjoy and everything else that they need to relearn what they love and value.
- Be open to making new friends. Unfortunately, some of your friendships may end if those people started out as your ex’s friends. Seek out new relationships. Make friends who only know you in your post-divorce life.
- Join clubs and take up hobbies. Maybe you wanted to join a book club but your ex thought it was a waste of time. Maybe you used to play sports in college and you just let it fall by the wayside. As you work to make new friends, it’s the perfect time to take up hobbies again. Join social clubs. The transition out of married life is easier if you are busy.
- Dial it back on dating. Don’t just look for a rebound. Don’t assume your next relationship will replace your old one and you’ll get married quickly. Look for that middle ground and don’t be afraid to take it slowly.
- Remember that life is fun and exciting. Being married isn’t everything to everyone, no matter what the movies tell you. You can have a great time after your marriage ends. Maybe you finally get to take that trip to Europe you have always craved or perhaps you’re ready to get out of the house and embrace a more outgoing lifestyle than your marriage allowed.
When you know what you want out of your post-marriage life, it can actually help you plan for your divorce because you’ll have set goals and you can take steps to achieve them. Make sure you understand your rights and legal options along the way.