- The first thing to know if you are about to file for divorce, or are going through the filing now, is that Distraction happens to everyone. You are not alone.
- If you have not filed for divorce yet, yet are stressed about the multitude of decisions you have to make and the life transition about to tae place, take as long as you and your spouse need to calm down, process the marriage, process your emotional state by going through the grieving process, and ultimately forgive yourself and/or your spouse for whatever caused the divorce. You need to go through the Emotional Divorce before filing for the Legal Divorce. You’re looking at about a year to adequately get through this stage.
- If you’ve already started the filing process, but find yourself just falling apart in your professional and your personal life, take control of time and explain to all the divorce professionals in your life, and to your spouse if you are able to communicate with your spouse, that you need time to process your emotions and heal, so that you can make good, sound legal decisions. You’re allowed to voice to your attorney, opposing counsel the Judge, your mediator, that you need time to get yourself together emotionally. Everyone will understand. If opposing counsel is a bully, screwed! Your health and welfare are important. Most people who have legal decision-making authority will understand that if you are forced to move forward without taking a little time to heal, your decisions will not be well thought and lasting, and in every state, there is potentially a mechanism to change the settlement agreement within a certain period of time following the finalization of the divorce. I have found that most Judges are understanding of the necessity of time to heal, focus, and come back with a clear head and heart to move forward and conclude the process.
- If you’re in a tough situation with custody and visitation with your children, you can address that one aspect of the divorce while emotionally healing. If your soon-to-be former spouse is in a position to harm your children if they have any amount of significant time with them, then you have to do what you can immediately to protect them. But this isn’t the majority of divorces.
- As you’re going through the emotional divorce, you still have to go to work, right? Do not be afraid to let Human Resources, or your immediate manager, know that you’re going to divorce, and ask for their help with resources to help you balance work and your personal life. Just opening up to your employer, will take a huge burden off of you. When we allow ourselves to be vulnerable, and share a personal difficulty, you will be surprised at how help will come your way. You can work with your employer to mitigate the effects of divorce on your work productivity.
- Compartmentalize time and put your divorce in its place! By that I mean, do not try to work the divorce duties into your business day. Use your work as your divorce-free zone. Establish a time of day, or days in the week, in which you can do your divorce paperwork, go to mediation, show up for depositions if you’re in a litigated divorce, and return emails and phone calls. Please remember, you are in charge of your time, and only you. This is your life. You must communicate your needs to those who are part of your divorce. Maybe even get a separate email just for divorce, that does not pop up on your cell phone so that you minimize divorce information coming to you while you’re working.
- Speak from the heart, by sharing your fears and challenges with your employer, and asking them to monitor and help you focus on work, so that your job can be the perfect distraction to the upheaval going on through emotional turmoil.
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