3 steps how to rebuild your life after separation
You would think this is a dating article, giving you an advice how to get back to the dating scene as soon as possible, after you experience of “change of the status”. In a sense it could be – but stay with me to the end; we will tackle that aspect too.
This article is intended for these who went through separation, divorce and yes – through loss.
In my opinion there are 3 specialists whom we need to consult in the aftermath of changing the status quo. That period of our life leaves us very vulnerable and susceptible to self harming behavior
1. Meet a grief specialist.
No matter under what circumstances a relationship comes to an end, if we have made emotional investment (very often material too) and we identify ourselves with the relationship, inevitably we will have an identity crisis.
In very rare cases a relationship ends amicably, so much so that almost nothing changes, just the two parties decide to call things with their real names, being friends instead of faking being a couple.
If however that is not the case, and you are left feeling that all is catastrophically different and you don’t find a meaning in life- it is a MUST to ask for professional help to navigate you through the volcano of emotions and sometimes self destructive behaviours.
Cut at the root any chance of self medicating and self soothing with alcohol, and other substances
If you are a self help junkie like me have a look at this book Tear Soup: A Recipe for Healing After Loss
2. Meet a financial adviser. Just.do.it.
Few times in my life I had the “chance” to see, feel, and live the self destructive financial behaviour of becoming solo. The first poor soul suffering from the grave consequences and sadly losing her health and life was my own mother. When she became a widow she felt obliged to keep the family business for two reasons. After becoming a widow, the only thing which kept her identity was the business which they had created with my dad. After losing her partner in life and work, she wanted to keep things “as they are” so she can have her sanity.
So far so good, but that was her financial catastrophe. She lost a partner with whom they were a good team – bringing different skills to the table. She was not able to compensate for his absence, and she was struggling to meet both ends. But any suggestions from any of us – her children to close the business was doomed to fall on deaf ears.
Had she been professionally guided, she would have sold it. In that way she could use the capital in an area where she would have been more comfortable for her. A budgeting plan would have been crucial managed her financial burden. A financial specialist would have advised her to downsize. A 3 bedroom apartment would not drag her down with all the expenses. Or maybe she would have been advised to cash on the extra room. Instead my mum chose a very tough self destructive coping mechanism – to keep up appearance.
My own experience on that matter
I have my own collection of self destructive financial behaviours, connected to separation. One very renown to us ladies is the so called “shopping therapy”. A very short lived sense of “self love ” which had detrimental effect on the financial statu- quo. It is very difficult to detect it if it is masked as “buying things for the home”. The sense of guilt is minimized and the illusionary feeling that it is a “useful thing” which we really needed can be a very sweet lullaby. Our sensible logical side that normally would put a hold on to the spending is desensitized. Those little voices in our head which whisper “I deserve to think of myself now”, “I need to look like the winner”, “I don’t want to compromise with my standard” are very bad advisers, in times when we need to be flexible.
In a sense we need to treat turning solo as moving to a new country, research, plan, budget. Being emotional beings, we rather be guided through the first stages. Same way as a physiotherapist would guide you after an accident, building your motor skills and strengthening the muscles.
3. Meet your guru.
Start a fitness program with a personal trainer, start a yoga class, book a cooking class, become religious. Whatever it is – go to a group led by somebody. Unless for the most part of your life you have been solo, or you have been through few separations already and call yourself a separation ninja, there is a great chance you met your friends or made your friends as a couple.
No matter what are the circumstances around you, whether it is a loss or separation- your friends accepted you and your partner as an entity. And as harsh as it is when the entity is not at present, friendships also fall apart. People can not cope with the newness of the situation- so they alienate you. The best way is to join a group of individuals, who are bond by a mutual hobby, interest, aspiration, faith. Whatever it is that you aspire to – just join the club.
And yes – there is a great chance, that along the way of rediscovering yourself you meet someone, who wishes to discover your new “me” alongside
Extra tip: Here is a list of Bach flower essence which help in your period of transition, I am using the many of them and always have the rescue remedy handy at home
- Sweet Chestnut – helps in situations when we are overwhelmed with despair after a loss
- Star of Bethlehem, a grassy plant with stunning star-shaped flowers, helps in all situations of shock and trauma — when we cannot believe what has happened
- Walnut helps us adapt to new circumstances.
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