By Amy Setzer, Legal Assistant, Woodruff Family Law Group
Cherishing family and friends and celebrating what really matters can be hard to do when Divorce is a thing in your life. Right now, you may feel broken and bitter while everyone else seems to be hopping around with some joyous version of Seasonal Affective Disorder. I know how you feel.
The first holiday season after my marriage ended felt more like a boxing match than “The Most Wonderful Time of the Year.” For two long months, Hallmark pummeled me with sappy, happily-ever-after movies incessantly playing 24 hours a day. Concerned, match-making friends relentlessly shuffled contenders in front of me, as if being single was a disease that needed curing. Relatives tagged-teamed, anxious to convince me “it would all work out,” even as they hit me below the belt with their shiny, pristine happiness. All the holiday magic and warm fuzziness in the air was enough to drive me into a dark closet with a tub of Ben & Jerry’s and a box of tissues. And then came New Year’s Eve—the heavyweight champion of them all. The time for romance & resolutions. Ick.
How many broken, discarded resolutions would I drag out of my dusty memory banks and recycle this year? For years, I’d made grandiose avowals of self-improvement only to abandon these whimsical notions for other bright, sparkly ideas. If there were three things on my list of annual oaths, I was bound to have broken two before the server refilled my champagne glass. No more, I decided. My broken nuptials already had me feeling like a failure—I wasn’t going to rub salt in my own wounds by making a bunch of commitments I’d never keep.
On the other hand, I didn’t want to give up. I mean, I’d already gone a couple rounds with The Holidays. It didn’t seem right to get knocked out in the final bout. Instead of throwing in the towel, I realized should be doing cartwheels–I had 47 weeks to prepare mentally for Thanksgiving! Why not rejoice and make the most of it!? I didn’t like the place in which I found myself. I needed to make some changes so I could move on with my life. What better time to start the recovery process than the first day of a new year?
Resolutions don’t have to be something to dread—when done right, they can be empowering. Getting through a divorce (or separation, or breakup) is a daunting, uphill climb; it is not for the weak of heart. Success requires steadfast perseverance. That first year, I finally realized I needed to stop moping around, waiting for someone to hand me the answers. Setting personal goals for the next year forced me to examine what I wanted to change; identifying why I hadn’t followed through on New Years’ past, helped me learn HOW to change. You can learn to change too.
So c’mon! 2015 is officially over fellow divorcees! You can creep out of your hiding places. As of January 1st, time is moving forward, and that’s what you need to do as well! In the coming days, we’ll present a series of tips, tricks, and ideas that will help you train your brain to think towards the future. Here’s a sneak peek at The ABC’s of Goal Setting:
- A is for Achievability: How to stay motivated and feel successful
- B is for Balance and Moderation: How to avoid getting bored and overwhelmed
- C is for Creating Meaningful Change: Invest in yourself