Fear of the Unknown

Fear of the unknown can make the early stage of divorce scary. Juggling child care, finances and the uncertainty of the outcome adds to one’s stress. Getting expert legal advice at the onset can allay some of these fears and make the divorce process smoother. Acknowledge that your world is drastically changing. Hold on to some rituals, such as weekly hikes with pals or a pint with your mates. My sons and I had pizza with a DVD every Friday evening all through my divorce. Having routines gives a constancy during divorce when life is so unpredictable.


Realise what you have control over and what is out of your hands in your divorce situation. Concentrate on what you have in your power, such what you do on the job, rather than what is not – your spouse’s behaviour. One may receive or have to pay a fixed amount of maintenance. That may appear to be a financial issue that cannot change. However you can control your spending which then frees up extra cash.


One way to control legal fees is going to Paradigm Family Law’s web site and checking out their fixed price packages for divorce. Knowing what your divorce will cost prevents an unpleasant surprise down the road. During our collaborative one, our financial advisor mandated that we write down our expenditures for a fortnight. This information helped me to cut out the unnecessary ones and come up with a down payment for my new house. If on a tight budget, involve the children with their input on how to cut costs. My sons suggested some great family activities which were free, such as concerts, festivals, picnics and more.


If your divorce seems to be moving too quickly or you feel your world is collapsing, take a short break to regroup. Pausing for a week during your divorce is fine, especially if you are feeling you are about to have a breakdown. Nurture yourself. You cannot do all of your tasks and be there for the kids if you are running on empty. Go out of town for a few days to relax or to gain a new perspective on your situation. My mum, sons and I went on a river cruise in the middle of my divorce when things were unbearable. It rejuvenated me and I had lots of energy to get through the rest of it, including division of assets. A massage, facial or a day out with friends accomplishes this too.

Flight or Fight

It is natural to have worries during divorce and how you handle them makes a difference in your well-being. The Mayo Clinic, Web MD and others state that worrying affects health in a negative way. It decreases the functioning of the immune system, and increases cortisol which activates the flight or fight reaction. This stress can cause insomnia, suppress the digestive system, affect the heart and so forth. To reduce your worries, ask your solicitor what would be the worst case scenario in your circumstance. You will probably discover it is not nearly as bad as you have imagined and you can relax a bit. Some have found it helpful to set a timer and limit worrying to only a half hour a day. Or write them down in one column with a possible solutions to them in another.

Life Coach

In our acrimonious divorce, our solicitors insisted that we each see a life coach for at least one session. She helped me put things into perspective and my husband brought his along to one collaborative divorce meeting. One does not have to go through divorce alone. There are divorce support groups, including MeetUp.com and Restored Lives. Reach out to others and consider enlarging your social or professional network. Staying connected to others helps one get through this life transition.


Wendi Schuller is a nurse, hypnotherapist and is certified in Neuro-linguistic Programing (NLP). Her most recent book is The Global Guide to Divorce and she has over 200 published articles. She is a guest on radio programs in the US and UK. Visit her website at globalguidetodivorce.com.

Paradigm Family Law