5 Tips for Managing Divorce Stress

Have you ever heard of the Mary Tyler Moore Show? It’s been off the air for decades, but if you’ve ever caught a rerun, there’s one scene you won’t forget.

Each episode begins with stressed but spunky Mary Richards dashing madly about. She moved to Minneapolis after breaking up with a boyfriend and took a job as an evening news associate producer. It’s a huge change with many obstacles, but Mary’s a strong person, and she always prevails. At the end of the opening segment, she pauses and throws her hat triumphantly in the air while the theme song concludes with, “You’re gonna make it after all.”

Like you, Mary ended an important relationship and her life changed in ways that were overwhelming at first. However, she was strong (also like you!) and used the breakup as an opportunity to find herself and love her life more than ever.

You’ll get there too, we promise! While it’s normal to be stressed after a life change like divorce, these tips will make your feelings easier to manage until you’re ready to throw your hat in the air and cheer too.

1. Dedicate 15 minutes a day to YOU

We know that this is a chaotic time, but don’t forget to do something special for yourself every day, even if only for 15 minutes. Go for a walk at lunchtime, use your Kindle app to download that new novel by your favorite author, or treat yourself to an exotic new tea. Everything else can wait until you’re refreshed and re-energized!

2. Get excited about the future

Comedian Buddy Hackett once said that he didn’t hold grudges. While he was fuming, he explained, “the other person is out dancing.”

Is it normal to be angry at/disappointed in your spouse because the marriage didn’t last? Absolutely! Do they deserve your ongoing attention and regret? Never! While it’s important to acknowledge your feelings and learn from this experience, you will feel a lot less stressed when you focus on the next exciting chapter in your life. There’s life after divorce, and you’ll love it!

3. Laugh with your loved ones

Laughter really is the best medicine. Plan to get together with your best friends at least once a week and do something that’s silly and fun. Sing karaoke, watch a comedy on Netflix, or check out a local comedy club. You’ll feel exhilarated, energized, and ready for the future.

4. Create checklists

Our thoughts can be funny creatures. They buzz around, seemingly impossible to control, until you feel the stress levels rise. When you start feeling this way, grab a pen and paper and write down what’s worrying you. There’s something empowering about capturing thoughts on paper. You can examine them, diffuse their power over you, and even burn them afterward.

We’re a big fan of checklists because they can also help you feel more organized and in control. When you write down your grocery lists, appointment schedules, and other obligations, you spare yourself the stress of trying to recall everything from memory. You can use a pen and paper or try one of the many great checklist apps out there.

5. Talk to a therapist

If you need some extra help working through stressful feelings, talking to a divorce therapist can strengthen your healing. In addition to helping you process all of the emotions associated with the end of your marriage, they will remind you that divorce is the end of an old life that no longer meets your needs. Then they will inspire you to be more excited and hopeful about the future.

We Know You’ve Got This!

We’re not going to tell you that divorce is fun or easy, but when you understand that your present difficulties are temporary and the best is yet to come, it can help you manage stress more easily. By the way, if you need a Tennessee divorce attorney who’s going to cheer for you every step of the way, contact Piper McCracken PLLC. We care about our clients and will get the experienced and compassionate representation you deserve.

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Piper McCracken, PLLC

Our firm began as a belief that things could be done better—in both the practice of law and in the working lives of lawyers. Founding partners, Heather Piper and Joanna McCracken, met while working as attorneys at a large, regional firm. They honed their skills as litigators on a broad range of cases from medical malpractice and product liability, to real estate and entertainment law. But it was their mutual desire to help people on a more personal level that inspired them to begin a family law practice.

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