When you’re in the process of divorcing, the primary focus may be on you and your soon to be ex, rather than on your kids, particularly if you are both working with divorce attorneys. You may feel that you are both being encouraged to constantly strategize your next steps in order to gain the coveted upper hand. In what may feel like an extended chess game, kids may find themselves on the losing end. Because of this, it’s important to set forth and adhere to guidelines for ensuring the innocent victims of divorce are protected, and emerge feeling safe and loved.

Your son or daughter: they are not…
1. Your child is not your marriage therapist. While that may seem intuitive, parents may look to their children as a sounding board or confident, even seeking advice. Don’t fall into this trap. Instead, shelter your kids as much as possible from the details of your divorce while also reassuring them of your love and support for them.

2. Your child is not a carrier pigeon. Using your child as a go between to give messages or payments to your spouse is strongly discouraged. Your child is not your messenger service. Speak to your spouse directly and avoid creating situations in which your child finds himself / herself stuck in the middle.

3. Your child is not your private detective. If you’re curious about who was over at your house when your child was there, or what might have been said about you, don’t ask your child. This again crosses the line. Your son our daughter should never feel like they’ve been put in a position of a double agent.

Your son or daughter: what they are more likely to be…
1. Insecure at times. It’s important to reassure your child that both mom and dad love them and will always is there for them. Although you and your spouse may not be on the best of terms, your child needs to feel that both of you still love and care deeply for them. Also, make an extra effort to catch your kids doing something good – and acknowledge it.

2. Surprisingly accurate in their recall. While they may have imperfect memories about their homework, they will remember every promise their parents made. It is so easy to promise it all to your child, but know that your child is keeping mental notes. He or she has recorded every promise kept and broken. The broken promises will add to the hurt and confusion he or she is already feeling. If you make a promise, keep it.

3. Excellent time keepers. There is a building uneasiness for a child when a parent keeps them waiting. Treat a meeting with your child with the same importance as a meeting with the president of a company (although your child is much more important!). If you’ve arranged for a 2pm meeting, that’s when you need to arrive. Your child will keenly recall negative feelings and what caused them during this emotional period. Don’t manufacture more stress. Be on time.

4. Assessors of consistency. Have an established and consistent set rules in both households. Hang them on the fridge in both homes. Don’t create room for kids to argue that “Dad lets me do this” or “Mom let’s me do that.” Instead, just introduce a consistent approach in both households with rules that are followed by all. If your child understands that expectations are the same, you will not only alleviate the divide and conquer approach that kids tend to test out, but also there will be a much greater atmosphere of stability.

5. Conflict averse. Never fight in front of the kids. Fighting in front of the kids is scary. Kids tend to feel that they are at the center of the friction and the source of your unhappiness. If there is a lead-up to an argument, stop and take a breath, and either defer the discussion or take it away from the kids so that they don’t hear or feel it. Always make them feel safe and secure

These are just some of the do’s and don’ts. Feel free to send me any questions you might have related to this topic and I will be happy to respond directly to you.

Here is a bonus gift for you, don’t forget to download your free guide on how to avoid the top 10 mistakes you want to avoid during your divorce. http://Divorcehelp1.gr8.com

If you’re looking for support, sign up for a PRIVATE (and free) consultation to talk about your journey and we’ll discuss if coaching is the right step for you

 

I found this brilliant TED talk given by Alison Ledgerwood and thought it would truly be helpful to share as food for thought in the search of strategies to stay positive during the divorce process.

You already know that positive thinking leads to a more fulfilling life. That much is clear. But how do you actually think positive when your mind is consistently stuck on the negative? and how can do it naturally… without using medication or alcohol?

Well…. that’s exactly what Alison Ledgerwood talks about in this TEDx talk today.

As a professional people watches (social psychologist) Alison Ledgerwood always wondered why the human mind swayed to the negative. She even noticed it herself when she was publishing papers. When her paper got rejected, it still weighed on her mind, even after a different paper was accepted.

What’s going on here? Why does failure seem to stick in our mind so much longer than a success?

Watch the brilliant talk below to find out why as well as the best strategy to deal with it.

Do you have ideas for training your mind to be more positive? Let us know in the comments so we all can learn from each other. 

Here is a bonus gift for you, don’t forget to download your free guide on how to avoid the top 10 mistakes you want to avoid during your divorce. http://Divorcehelp1.gr8.com

If you’re looking for support, sign up for a PRIVATE (and free) consultation to talk about your journey and we’ll discuss if coaching is the right step for you

 

 

Divorce is one of the most stressful things a person can experience. Having traveled that path myself, I remember having two road signs ahead of me. FALL APART, or BECOME STRONGER.

Most people get married thinking they will live happily ever after, at least that is what I thought when I started my life with my ex-husband. Little did I know that happily ever after would end very soon and turn into a roller coaster of painful life lessons.

The next thing I knew I was facing a cross road, with all the stress that the divorce brought I was faced with making a choice, falling apart or getting stronger.

It was a journey that took a lot of work and commitment, but I chose becoming stronger.

Here are some suggestions on how you can take the challenges that come with divorce and turn them into your strong points:

  1. You will learn to follow and listen to your heart. I remember being torn inside not knowing what the right decision for me and my child is.  To get to the point of actually making the decision can be very difficult. However, if you are true to yourself and you get in touch with your inner best self you will figure out what is best for you and your children and it will make you stronger.  After trying for years to salvage my marriage and going to therapy, I knew that I would never be happy and that I would end up raising my daughter in a really toxic environment.  Making the decision that this is not the example I would set for her surely made me stronger and helped me define what I would want and need a future relationship.

 

  1. You can learn to become more independent. After being married for a while usually each spouse takes on a role in the family; for example one is more involved with childcare while the other manages the bills or other financial responsibilities.  In my case, I was a housewife taking care of our baby and running our home. After the divorce, I had to learn to do everything on my own, including finding ways of supporting myself. If you weren’t working and need to go out into the working world to support yourself and your children, you will have to learn to be creative and find solutions you would have never thought of before including taking care of your children and household.  Being thrown into this situation will bring out survival skills you never knew you had.Necessity is the mother of all inventions.

 

  1. You will learn how to prioritize. When you are faced with having to do everything on your own and juggle your children, work, the household and so much more you learn to prioritize in ways you never have before. Perhaps you will not manage to push in that load of laundry you wanted to because you wanted to make sure you are there for your daughter’s recital, or any other important moment. Being in this situation will give a new meaning to what life priorities should be and how to navigate your life around it.

 

  1. You will learn to become more economical. When I was married I really didn’t manage our finances or pay any bills, so I really didn’t know what we were spending on anything.  I never really thought about how much our groceries cost or anything else for that matter. Then I was faced with having to budget life and had to start asking myself all these questions. How much am I spending for car fare? How much am I spending for food? Movies, vacations and so on. You will learn to find ways to manage your finances by budgeting yourself, so you can go and take that vacation you want to with your children during spring break. You will be a lot more disciplined and structured and you will actually learn to value this new trait.

 

  1. You will learn who your real friends are. This one came the hard and painful way. I have to say I am grateful that I learned the truth when I did, because if I wouldn’t have I would have been in the dark for life and kept on giving of myself to the wrong people. Some of my so called “friends” turned their back and me and started taking sides. Initially I was shocked and hurt, but as time went on I learned to be grateful for having learnt the truth.  It set me free of myself and of people who were deep down toxic.  This is a painful point that I hear from most of my clients.  We all take it hard when our so called “friends” turn their backs on us, but the lessons we can learn from it are deeply valuable, and I always motivate my clients to see it from this perspective. Your true friends will stand by you in challenging times, and those who won’t aren’t real friends. Aren’t you kind of glad that you found out the truth. Better later than never.

 

  1. You gain insight to self-help and growth. Although I had been in marriage counseling during my marriage, I didn’t gain a 10th of what I gained after seeking more therapy post divorce.  Going to therapy is the best gift you can give yourself and your children. The truth is you don’t need to get divorced to give yourself or your children this gift, but many people are under the misconception that therapy is for people who have “issues” or aren’t “normal.  The reality is that it’s the furthest thing from the truth. Therapy is the best tool to help you become the best person you can be, to help you get in touch with your inner self, guide and teach you skills that will turn you into a successful happy balanced human being. Most people who have never explored therapy really miss out on truly knowing themselves and gaining depth and knowledge about life, people and relationships.

 

  1. You will learn that you can go through the most difficult things in life and come out on the other side, not only standing but STANDING STRONG AND TALL! When I first got divorced I felt like a reflection of my former self. When I first got married I was this optimistic idealistic girl that was filled with dreams for the future and positive aspirations.  However, the challenges in our marriage chipped away at my inside bit by bit, and by the time I was out of the marriage, I didn’t know how I would possibly move on and make it.  But then we have this inner survival mechanism that kicks in and somehow we get back up and survive. But we don’t just survive, we actually thrive and can turn our lives into successes.  After having learned that I was able to get through the hardest chapter of my life “divorce”, I kind of knew that I have it in me to get through pretty much anything.  Yes, I have had many challenges come my way, but I always tapped back into that reserve energy knowing that I had come a long way and made it stronger and taller, and that gave me the courage to keep going.

 

Here is a bonus gift for you, don’t forget to download your free guide on how to avoid the top 10 mistakes you want to avoid during your divorce. http://Divorcehelp1.gr8.com

If you’re looking for support, sign up for a PRIVATE (and free) consultation to talk about your journey and we’ll discuss if coaching is the right step for you