Your new life begins at separation and this is a time to look forward to new beginnings. During the separation process, whether you have moved out or are staying in your home, it is time to establish new traditions that accommodate your living situation and to retain any old traditions that are still possible to keep things flowing and your family comfortable. For example, it is likely that you and your family will not be able to sit down together every night for dinner, but the traditions of taking the children to see Santa Clause at the mall each year can very well be retained despite having to deal with the parameters of a co-parenting agreement.
It is also crucial to clean up! Be sure to reorganize important papers in an accordion file and to secure them in a safe or safety deposit box. For extra safety, you can let a loved one or a trusted friend know where they are. It is always good to have extra safeguards when it comes to important documents such as social security cards, birth certificates, insurance policies, etc. With the separation or divorce process, a lot of information can get lost in the shuffle of moving and such, so be sure that you know where everything is going.
Make sure that you take time with your family despite any struggles you are having with your ex-spouse. A spouse may not be around forever but your children and extended family will still have a continuous presence in your life. It is also beneficial to re-establish a support network of friends. Good friends could change you from crying over the situation to laughing over it afterward. Nothing can quite ease the pain of losing your spouse like having a wide support network of friends who are consistently there for you.
Most importantly: Take care of yourself! Some people have been in a relationship for so long that they lose track of themselves. This your time to begin again. Take the time to learn more about yourself outside of the relationship that you have been in for so long. Maybe try a new hobby or new exercise routine. With a hobby, you can become invested in something you enjoy doing so much that you will wonder why you weren’t doing it before.
Maybe try a new exercise routine or try something you’ve always wanted to do. For instance many divorced people begin to travel more and meet new life-time friends. Some have picked up yoga and found that it taught them a lot of lessons regarding patience and non-judgment — which are two lessons that surely need to be learned throughout the separation or divorce process. Taking up walking in a local park will allow you to discover natural wonders that have always been just a few short blocks from your home.
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Breath. Reorganize. Hope. Live. This is your new beginning and we are here to help.