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Tips on managing emotions during separation and divorce

Separation and divorce can be an incredibly challenging time. Your capacity for dealing with overwhelming and at times, confronting circumstances is tested.

You may feel shocked and then angry, confused and then bitter. You may accept it and even feel a little relieved.

Of all the emotions you might go through, it is highly likely that anxiety looms large.

It’s normal to be anxious about what the future might hold. You may worry about losing the security of being in a relationship and your familiar routines and habits, or about how you will make it financially on your own. You might be concerned you will end up fighting it out in the Family Court. You may also be anxious for the well-being of your children, who will have to adjust to new circumstances and living arrangements.

Anxiety can greatly impact your decision-making and judgement. You might become more reactive, mistrustful or angry. You may become focused on a single solution to a problem (“I must keep the house” or “the kids must live with me full-time“). This can cause your ex to fight back which only adds to your anxiety – and boom! The cycle of conflict is in full swing.

So how do we break the cycle of conflict? How can you feel more confident in your ability to make the best possible decisions for yourself and your family?

  1. Always remember that you are a sensible and capable person but this is a difficult time and it’s important that you feel heard and understood. Seek the support you need, it can be really therapeutic to talk out the issues with a trusted advisor such as a coach or psychologist.
  2. Reflect on what is most important to you and your family. Write down and reflect on your goals and priorities. Think about what you need to move on with your life after divorce and thrive.
  3. Remember that you have control over your own life and actions. Be more conscious of reactive behaviours and knee-jerk reaction. Focus on what you want instead of what you don’t want.
  4. Consider WHY the outcome you are insisting on is so important. Consider the bigger picture and whether other solutions may also be able to satisfy those same needs, without being at odds with your exe’s needs or a driver of conflict.

As a trained conflict management coach and collaborative family lawyer,  we are well equipped to help you navigate the family law process and make your own in powered decisions. For more information on divorce coaching, send us an email at perpetua@balancefamilylaw.com.au.

Balance Family Law is a non-adversarial, collaborative family law firm that really does do things differently. Perpetua has over a decade of experience as a family lawyer, is a trained conflict coach and collaborative law practitioner.

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