Surviving Your Split

Your post-divorce life is about to become even more amazing.

Your post-divorce life is about to become even more amazing.

Your post-divorce life is about to become even more amazing.

So often during divorce, we have a tendency to only think of all the bad, horrible shit that has happened to us, or may happen to us.

Don’t beat yourself up if you’re guilty of thinking like this. In some way or another, we all do it. Who can blame us with all the crazy that’s been coming our way?

Have you ever gotten a migraine, enraged that your ex was two our late picking up the kids?

Have you ever sat in the car and cried for 45 minutes when your lawyer told you once more that your ex-to-be has threated that you won’t get a cent of his money and hopes you become homeless?

Does she continue to threaten that you’ll never see the kids again?

With daily drama never leaving, our emotions are on red alert all the damn time.

And it’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking that any kind of sun peeking out from the clouds is for other people’s divorces. Not ours.

I’m here to tell you that’s complete B.S.

Even with managing the three-ring circus that may be your life right now, you deserve to be happy about the future and it’s easier to plan for the good stuff than you may think.

Let me show you how!

The Best Case Scenario Exercise

Do you remember last week’s exercise called “What the Worst That Could Happen?”  You know—the one where we stomped out our anxiety with the Worst-Case Scenario exercise? Well, think of this week’s exercise as its much cooler cousin, called “What’s the Most Awesome Thing That Could Happen?”  And like most of Surviving Your Split’s kick-ass exercises, this one is also easy as hell to do and only takes three steps.

  1. Think about all the amazing things that could happen to you in the future—the things that make you break out into a smile, perhaps the things you’re sneaking peaks at online during your lunch break. List them all, and divide them into however many categories you want: Personal, Professional, Well-Being, Emotional—whatever works for you. Name as many things that come to you—there’s no limit on your hopes and dreams.

  2. Now, pick the top two dreams you have, no matter how grand and unattainable you may see them.

    • **Note** when we plan for ourselves, this stage is where many stop, saying that whatever they want to do is unattainable. But push on to step three! You’ll see how easy it can be to attain them.

  3. For your top dreams, break them down into smaller, more manageable. We’re all about setting smaller goals here that build on one another.

    • If something seems too overwhelming for you, break it down into what you can do with in it the next week, next month, next three months, six months, and then one year. You’ll find that once you start dividing things into smaller objectives, it becomes less overwhelming (and more motivating) to reach your goals.

Daydream 1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Turn those hopes into an actionable, “Best Case Scenario” plan! Image via KQED.

Need some help? See below for how I used the “Best Case Scenario” Exercise to start focusing on all the great stuff that was ahead of me during my own divorce, instead of worrying about the day-to-day drama that was trying to take over my life. You absolutely can do the same.

  1. Martha’s List

    • Personal: Do something I couldn’t really do while I was married, get out and travel, start studying a foreign language, get healthier, write a book,

    • Professional: Get a raise, get more job-related certifications

  2. Top Two Dreams of everything listed

    • Getting Out and Travelling for at least three months

    • Getting Healthier

  3. Breaking down those dreams into more manageable, actionable steps

    • Travelling!!

      • By next week: decide where it is I’ve always wanted to go

      • By next month: research what it will take to get there. Plan a budget, secure vacation time or a leave of absence from work, decide whether or not you want to travel solo or with a group, etc.

      • In the next three months: Plan the itinerary, make sure passport and vaccinations are up-to-date, secure visas, make reservations, etc.

    • Getting healthier

      • By next week: Assess why I’m feeling unhealthy. Am I overeating? Do I lack energy? Haven’t been to the gym in a while?

      • By next month: Evaluate eating habits to see what needs to be changed. Start cooking healthier food. If I want some extra support, start researching groups like Weight Watchers, etc to see if it will be a good fit.

      • In the next three months: Start making exercise a regular part of day. If unhappy with going to the gym, start exploring different options and take some different classes (pilates, hot yoga, spinning) to see if anything clicks.

 

Moscow Pic

 

 

 

 

 

A totally corny selfie of me in Russia–I always wanted to go when I was married but was unable to. Post-divorce, it was one of the biggest dreams I had that became a reality with planning. (Phota via author)

 

The Game Plan for your own Best Case Scenario

This sample exercise example is by no means exhaustive. Take as much time as you need to for mindfully dreaming and scheming, but remember:

Any dream can be put into action if you plan for it and hold yourself accountable to it.

As you’ve probably already realized during the divorce process, you are the one responsible for your own happiness and making sure that you’ll be okay in the end. Sometimes, this is not an easy thing to do.  But as you’ve learned about yourself in past exercises, you already know how to plan, make lists, and handle craziness. So why not use those skills of planning and organizing to do prepare yourself for the wonderful life ahead of you?

If you’d like to share some of your own Best Case Scenarios and your action plan for achieving them, leave your comments at the blog post! I’d love to hear about your plans for the next chapter in your life.

And as always, if you have any questions or comments, let me know!

Until next time, remember to take care of yourselves. You deserve it.

Warmly,

Martha

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