As we begin episode four of the We Chat Divorce podcast, please remember that divorce does not define you. Yes, it’s part of our stories and it may be a part of your story, but that’s okay. We’re here to share our insight and inspiration, addressing the good stuff and the bad stuff (aka the BS) and hope this podcast will help you move forward in a positive direction.
Being Present with Each Other
Do you find yourself having a hard time focusing? Does the activity in your life, not to mention in your divorce, have you feeling overwhelmed? It’s a problem we all encounter, especially in our world of instant gratification but disconnecting, especially from social media, is important.
Whether you’re a stay-at-home parent, managing the household or you’re working full time, the most important thing you can do for each other – and your marriage - is be present. It’s deeper than putting the cell phones down.
Make it a point to have a transition time from work to home and then carve out some time to sit with each other and acknowledge you want to be in each other’s presence. Being married and being a parent is about relationships and if you can’t figure out the relationships, you’re going to have a lot of dysfunction going on. Being present and listening, making that person feel heard and affirmed is so critical to healthy relationships. We all need to slow down, listen more, and be in the moment.
Being Present in the Divorce Process
Being present throughout the divorce process is a critical skill to develop. You have a lot coming at you all at once – where to live, will the kids be okay, will you have enough money, will you have enough energy to get up and go to work each day, and on and on. Actively being present is a skill that will get you through each step. It may be helpful to start journaling, even if that means you write down each step and focus on them one at a time.
This is also true with mediation. If you’re going through divorce as two individuals, each with your own attorney communicating with each other on your behalf, you’re not even in the conversation in the moment. With mediation or a negotiated settlement, you remain present and in the moment about the decisions being made. Literally. You’re there in the room together and you’re able to hear you’re your soon-to-be-ex wants a certain asset or more time with your kids. This process allows you to communicate with each other and, above all else, be heard. It changes how you get divorced for the better.
- Use the “24-Hour Panic” Rule: Give yourself time to not think about the issue. Write it down if it helps you. Put it on a to do list. When you come back to it 24 hours later, your perspective may be completely different.
- Stop, Drop, and Let Go: Maybe you’re not wired to let something go for 24 hours. Try 10 minutes. Remember the fire prevention phrase, “Stop, drop, and roll?” Tell yourself, “Stop, drop, and let go.” If you feel overwhelmed or you’re not feeling heard, give it that time, that silence. The feeling may go away or you may master it.
Being present helps to set boundaries for yourself and others. It helps to quiet the noise in your head so you can tune into what others are saying. It helps you to focus on one thing at a time.
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