5 Tips for Getting Out of Your Post-Divorce Rut (part 2 of 2)

Posted by Swati on Jan 7, 2010 in Divorce |

As I said in my last post, being in the post-Divorce rut is no fun.  You are tired, grumpy, and it’s hard to enjoy much of anything.  Thankfully, there are some things you can do to help yourself get away from the sluggishness of it all.  Read on…

1)       Create new routines for yourself and your children.  One way to start living your new life is to start living your new life.  Routines are a great way to start because you control them and no one else has to know about it.  My daughter and I created a new routine for waking up in the morning.  I go into her room, and I say something like, “Time to get up, little Goosey-Moosey.”  Her response is to keep sleeping but hold out her arms as if awaiting a giant hug.  I bend down to take in that sleepy hug, and my daughter quickly wraps her arms around my head like it is a teddy bear.  Then, she resumes her sugar-plum slumber.  Eventually, my head gets a little tired and she does get up…but I love this little morning ritual.  We’ve done this for the last five years.  Sometimes, I cover her face in kisses too.

2)      Know your values and admire yourself for sticking to them.  When I divorced, it had been years since I had thought about how I wanted to live my life as a single person; and I had never considered how I wanted to live my life as a single parent.  One day, I picked up a pencil and started writing out what was important to me.  Putting my daughter first, not my career.  Making sure we had memorable experiences together.  Creating a sense of family.  Living a good, healthy life.  Giving back to my family and friends as they had given to me.  I just wrote and wrote.  I would pull this list out each day and read it.  It helped me see that I wasn’t living my life in a haphazard manner; I was living it as I intended.  And that’s a good feeling when find yourself unexpectedly single again.  

3)      Revel in the little things.  That trip to Hawaii or Disney World was terrific, no doubt.  But it really is about enjoying the everyday moments in life.  They occur all the time, all over the place, and youhave a good fortune to enjoy these gems if you pause long enough.  Your child gets the widest grin ever when you pick her up from pre-school 25 minutes early and drink some hot cocoa together.  You sit on a bench at the park and make up stories with your son.  Your kids help you “clean” the kitchen and you know you will have to do it again later…but who cares?  Your daughter puts on your work shoes and says she’s going to be just like you someday.  It’s all delicious stuff, coming at you all day; take it in!

4)      Be patient.  Showing yourself the patience you most likely bestow upon others sounds simple, but it can be so elusive.   I don’t mean to sound all syrupy or anything, but you’ve just been through a traumatic event.  Divorce is life changing.  It’s really okay if you find yourself rolling backwards every now and then.  That’s human. You’ll bounce back.  I promise. Just be patient.  Time is an amazing healer.

5)      Treat yourself to something you love.  Spa day?  Golf?  Reading a book?  Taking a bath? Watching a reality show? Set a date with yourself and let yourself languish in an evening, an afternoon, or thirty minutes of some indulgence.  Try to do this once a week.  You deserve to smile too.

Do you have any ideas based on your personal experience or the experiences of someone close to you? Please do share…

With a smile,


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  • Rebecca says:

    Sign up for those tango lessons you always wanted to take!

  • Jody Maley says:

    Thanks Swati,

    a great post and I love your blog as well. I was a single mom for awhile and those first couple of months were definitely the hardest.

    I think your tips are great and I remember even doing some of those myself…I really liked the one about writing your values! I remember going through the grocery aisles and thinking “gee, I don’t even know how to pick things I like”


  • Swati says:

    Jody – I had the same sort of experience as you did in the grocery aisle…and it shocked me to have forgotten to think about what I like! Thanks for your comment.

  • Swati says:

    Rebecca – ha! I forgot I took Belly Dancing with a girlfriend of mine!!! We were so good at it – but it was so fun.
    – Swati

  • Joyful says:

    I LOVE your wake-up routine.
    Thanks for visiting my blog and leaving some comment love.

  • Thanks for this! I wish I’d seen this post a year ago. Would have made life a lot easier for me.

  • Hanna Horner says:

    Thanks for your inspiring thoughts :)
    GREAT post. This is all true for LIFE – and not limited to post divorce. I see too many people around me who are STUCK and never get (or rather TAKE) the chance to even THINK about what they would like to experience in life.
    Having established routines, knowing your values and your goals, being truly grateful for what you DO have, loving, forgiving and accepting YOU for who you are, smiling and caring for yourself as well as others is THE recipe for happiness.

    Thanks for the comment on Spunky Mama

  • Swati says:

    Well said, Spunky Mama!
    – Swati

  • Clairity says:

    Great post.

    Thanks for commenting on Hip to be Mom. Following you on GFriendconnect and Twitter, would love it if you would follow me :)

  • Vivianne says:

    These are great tips! When I separated from my ex-husband I tried to make new routines and traditions for my children to help them adjust as well. It took time, but we got through it.

    Lovin your blog! I have an award for you! http://viviannesvista.blogspot.com/2010/01/walking-red-carpet.html

  • Tiffany says:

    Treat yourself for sure! You’ve been through a lot and deserve a little something!

    Happy Friday!

  • luvtosave says:

    hello..Dropping by from MBC – new follower

  • Great post! This could apply to anyone who is in a rut, too, not just from divorce. Sometimes life just takes a wierd turn and you get a bad attitude for whatever reason. I like “revel in the little things” esp. Those smiles and funny moments with my kids always pull me through. Thanks for the always insightful writing, Swati.

  • Create a joyful soundtrack and play it when you’re ready to pull out of the muck. Fill it with your favorite, happy songs that make you want to dance and smile.

  • Swati says:

    Thanks Naomi – you are right! It can be applied more broadly…

    Stephanie – Great idea!

    Vivienne, Tiffany, Hanna, Momma Sunshine and Joyful – Thank you for your kind words!

    xo – Swati

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