A divorce isn’t something that happens in the last three months of your marriage. Usually it’s the result of years or decades of negative and toxic behavior that explodes when that final straw gets laid on the camel’s back.
It isn’t pretty.
All of the years leading up to it are full of actions and words that devalued us until, when we actually do get divorced, we’re feeling pretty worthless. If your divorce was brought about by your ex’s infidelity, for example, there is the feeling that he picked someone else over you -- that somehow she is better or prettier than you, and that you have less value because of it. No matter how many times your friends tell you she is a hag you still feel devalued because of what happened, right?
We are headed towards the end of the year. In a few weeks people are going to start making all kinds of resolutions for the New Year -- I am asking that you make only one. Reaffirm your value this coming year.
You are valuable because you are you. You are a unique individual that is irreplaceable no matter what you’ve been told. It’s time to learn to believe it.
OK, you don’t have to yell, but whether you realize it or not, the spoken word is extremely powerful. When someone tells you that you are lazy, stupid, or ugly you hear it and your brain files it away. When you try to build yourself up you often think it -- because talking to yourself is something only crazy people do. Thinking it doesn’t have the same effect.
Begin affirming yourself aloud.
I am valuable
I am kind
I am smart
I am pretty
I can do anything I set my mind to
Tell Yourself How to Feel
Our brains are like computers; they take in the information we feed them and then spit out the result. Most of us spend our lives accepting whatever information happens to float by as truth. It shouldn’t be that way, and it doesn’t have to be. You can reprogram your brain by telling it how to feel.
Sure, you might be under a crap-ton (by the way, I’ve always wondered exactly how much a crap-ton or a sh**-load was) of stress or having the most horrible day, but focusing on those things isn’t going to make them better. Instead, close the tabs and reboot your brain by changing your view.
I am content
I am happy
I am secure
I am confident
Don’t take in junk, either. Reading the latest gossip on the tabloids or keeping up with Kim Kardashian’s butt just feeds your brain junk. Instead, read uplifting things like Chicken Soup for the Soul, your favorite Bible passages, or affirming quotes from great philosophers.
Remind Yourself to Walk in Forgiveness
Bitterness will eat you up!
Remind yourself that you are kind, mature, and you walk in forgiveness. Remember that forgiveness isn’t about letting the other person “off the hook,” it’s about not being responsible for their payback. Forgiveness just means you aren’t hanging on to it.
I keep getting accused of not forgiving my ex for a variety of things. That’s wrong. I have forgiven him -- I did so within hours of our separation -- but that doesn’t mean I won’t hold him accountable for his responsibilities!
I have no desire to see him hurt and I wish him no ill will, but I’m also not about to sit back and let him blow off what the court has required of him as far as the kids go. I will pursue justice and fairness but I won’t pursue revenge.
See the difference?
I forgive _____ for __________
I wish _________ well in his new life
I release bitterness toward __________ for ______________
The “D” Word
Nope, not divorce.
Most of us have come to a place where we accept life’s dregs. We believe we don’t deserve anything at all.
You are deserving of love, happiness, and success. In fact, the mentality that you don’t deserve those things often holds you back from getting them. And when I say “you” I also mean “me.” This is big for me.
I will spend a chunk of my paycheck on something for one of the kids, but I will not buy something for myself until I am forced to. I used to tell myself it was because we didn’t have money, because that’s what mom’s do, or because (fill in the blank). The truth is that I don’t do things for myself because I don’t think I’m worth it.
I deserve the good things that come to me
It is good to indulge myself once in a while
I am just as important as anyone else
My hopes, dreams, desires, and preferences are important
Change Your Perception of Yourself
By affirming yourself with these statements, and others that speak to you personally, you’ll be changing your perception of yourself. You’ll be happier and have a healthier outlook on life. Best of all, you’ll see your circumstances changing over time. Surround yourself with people who will uplift and encourage you, and limit your time with people who are critical, negative, or who gossip. Join First Wives World to talk to others who are dealing with the same things you are.
Image Courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons, User Angry Lambie 1