Right now, you might be so devastated by the end of your marriage, it feels like you’ve hit rock bottom. You don’t even know who you are let alone capable of self-care.
I am here to tell you that there is a path out of this grief, you can stop hurting and life can be better.
It might not feel like it, but you still have choices. No matter how bad things get, we always have a choice. There are so many things you can do to stop the pain, and it doesn’t have to be anything time consuming or too difficult either. Small, consistent steps on a daily basis will help you to heal and create incredible results in your life.
Self-care is a great starting point when you are going through a traumatic separation or divorce. As women we are hard wired to put other’s needs ahead of our own, especially when it comes to our ‘other halves’. Many women tell me that they put so much into their relationship that they had become completely detached from themselves, their values and what they need to make them truly happy. It was only when that relationship ended, they released how much damage they had caused to themselves through lack of self-care. Their needs had gone unmet for so long they felt powerless to help themselves. The one person they relied on for love, support, and guidance had left and they found it difficult to know how to cope or work out know what they need to overcome the pain and suffering.
If that sounds like you then let this be the last day that you ever neglect yourself.
Every woman should treat self-care as a priority in their life, rather than just a treat we indulge in every so often by getting a treatment at a salon or a nice meal out. Self-care is so much more than that. When you start to take care of yourself and your needs, you will drastically improve the quality of your life, the outcomes you produce and satisfaction you get out of your relationships. When it comes to facing challenges or traumas like divorce/separation, a person who cares for themselves knows how to move away from the pain and how to be their own rescue – they don’t get stuck, and they don’t need others to rescue them.
As I tell my clients, it is never too late to put yourself back in the center of your life. If you want to change your life, you must stop neglecting yourself and start taking time every single day to nourish your body, mind, and soul.
Taking care of your body encompasses many things. How much sleep and rest you’re getting, how much physical activity you are doing, your diet and how well you’re caring for your health (medication, vitamins, etc).
• Are you getting adequate sleep?
• Are you resting enough?
• Do you get enough exercise or physical movement?
• Do you have a balanced diet?
• Are you taking care of your health?
• Are you listening to your body and giving it what it needs?
Self-Care of the MIND
The way you think, things you say to yourself about yourself and the things that you’re filling your mind with greatly influence your psychological well-being.
In the context of divorce, caring for your mind includes showing yourself compassion, respect, love, and patience. Many women tend to question themselves and their self-worth, they think the marriage breakdown was their fault and wonder what is ‘wrong’ with them. These thoughts can take a massive toll on your self-esteem, confidence, and mental health. The fact is there is nothing wrong with you, you are loveable, you are enough, and you are awesome as you are.
Guard your mind very carefully and keep check of your inner dialogue. What are you constantly saying to yourself about your situation? Make an effort to release negative thoughts and replace them positive, peaceful and respectful ones.
Don’t underestimate what you are going through right now. Divorce is a very traumatic experience, and you are grieving a loss. You will go through a roller-coaster of emotions and it is important to that you take this time to process your feelings.
Don’t deny your feelings, pretend you are okay or try to numb the pain with alcohol, new relationships or getting busy at work. Face what you are feeling head on and take time to understand what you are going through. Give yourself the time and space to feel how you feel without judgment (from yourself or others), then decide how you’re going to handle the situation. This will stop the feelings from festering inside you and it will help you to understand what you need to move through the pain — either by deciding how you’ll resolve the issue (if you have control over it), or how you’ll better cope with it going forward (if you don’t).
Grieving is not a sign of weakness, and it does not mean you are not resilient. The purpose of grief is to work through your emotions, feel them, so that you can get those raw feelings out of the way. If you ignore your feelings and do not take time to process them, you will stay stuck in grief – repeating the same painful feelings repeatedly.
Spirituality can mean different things to different people. It doesn’t necessarily mean you have to belong to a religious group or hold a firm belief in God. Spiritual connection is simply about believing in something beyond yourself – outside of physical, and material things. Realising that that there is so much more to you and your life than your marriage will help you to look beyond your pain.
There are so many ways to nurture your soul, so you decide what spirituality means to you:
• Spending time in nature/walk in the woods
• Listening to nature sounds on YouTube
• Meditation or quiet reflection
• Reading something inspiring
• Writing a gratitude list
• Prayer – you don’t have to be religious to pray, just believing that a higher power (universe/God/some external force) is out there, looking out for you can be very comforting during difficult times. I am not religious, but I pray to God often for guidance and comfort. It is very healing, soothing and just helps me to tap into my own subconscious for answers. Don’t be confined by religion when learning to pray – do what feels right to you.
• Selfless fulfilment through volunteering or charity work
• Creating a space in your house where you light candles, relax and focus on your breathing for a few minutes
• Repeating positive affirmations to yourself
• Religious practice
YOU CAN GET THROUGH THIS
I know right now, even getting out of bed feels like climbing a mountain, so self-care feels like the last thing on your mind. Some women say they let go of themselves so much, they don’t know how to self-care or don’t even know where to start!’ One lady told me: ‘I’m struggling so much to get back to who I was. I spent years trying hard to please my husband every day and constantly looking for his approval. Now that our marriage is over, I feel so lost. I don’t know who I am. I try to practice self-care but I don’t know how to, his negative words still haunt me and make me feel worthless almost every time I look in the mirror or see a photo of myself.’
I know it is hard to get back to caring for yourself. This is why I show my clients empowering ways to rebuild themselves, validate themselves (rather than look for approval from others), and love who they see in the mirror.
We explore what form of self-care works best for them and I show them how they can take small steps every day to rediscover who they are so that they can find their peace and joy again.
Book your FREE Divorce Support Call with me to find out how I can help you to overcome your divorce and rebuild yourself and have an amazing new life. Simply email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange your appointment.