When divorcing, there is a lot to do, prepare and coordinate. It is not just physically taxing but also emotionally intensive and this incites positive and negative feelings. Coupling a separation or divorce with Christmas can be an overwhelming feat to undertake. Rachael Scharrer, Divorce Expert and founder of DivorceAnswered.com.au shares some simple self-care tips, at Christmas and every day, to nurture our sense of self. Here are some tips for you to action:
Treat yourself every day. As Weight Watchers used to say (I am not sure if it still does), you can have two small squares of chocolate every day, but you can’t save up the blocks and binge at the end of the week. While Weight Watchers refers to food, the same thing translates to you – be it a morning coffee, exercise ritual, bath, exercise or facial mask. Investing a little time and effort into re-charging you and reminding yourself of your value helps to build your confidence
Be honest. Truth sets you free. There is a great weight and burden associated with telling white-lies, fibs and blatant lies. The web of deceit becomes so complicated (especially if you are lying to many others as well as yourself) that one often looses track of what has or hasn’t been said and which version was told. For many people, keeping up with the lies is too hard and there is so much opportunity for error. Telling the truth is much easier on the memory and leaves you with more emotional freedom to focus on the more important parts of life
Apologise and forgive. Carrying the weight of wrong-doings or guilt is another heavy burden. You can release the weight by making heart-felt, genuine apologies. Once you commit to forgiving, then you need to let go of the residual resentment, hurt or anger and not continually dwell on the past. Leave the past in the past, learn from your lessons and make great decisions and choices for the future
Prioritise an interest. Nowadays, Australians are working longer hours. By taking up an interest, class or group sport, you can force yourself out of the office or away from the family at a reasonable and fair time to attend to the commitment. Don’t forget, you never know who you will meet, network with or see there
Count backwards from 10. When you feel yourself becoming agitated, infuriated, angry and the like, count backwards, slowly from 10 before you react. Counting upwards has been scientifically proven to escalate the anger, whereas counting backwards helps to diffuse the situation
Exercise. It is well documented that there are so many benefits to exercising. When you increase your blood pressure and get your cardio working, you produce endorphins (those happy hormones) while improving your fitness. Exercise is a great way to release frustrations, pent up energy and help regulate moods. In the least, take yourself on a brisk walk and enjoy the scenery, sun on your face and the world passing by around you. You don’t have to completely exhaust yourself to enjoy the benefits of exercise
Meditation and affirmations. Finding an amazing meditation app can certainly assist with on-the-go and on-demand meditations. You can choose to meditate, escape and restore balance with an appropriate track that suits your mood, state and situation. One favourite app is Insight Timer and the meditations by Kate Westlake. (This isn’t a paid endorsement or an affiliate, only a fan of the app)
Lose yourself. Find a great book and schedule a little time to indulge, escape and feed your soul. You may be interested in fiction, autobiography or self-help. Whatever your choice may be, you will be investing in yourself and adding to some interesting conversation with friends about what you have read. Win–win!!
Just as giving and caring for others helps to promote a sense of community, it is essential that the same efforts go into self-care first When you are feeling more complete and whole thanks to some simple self-care techniques, you will find that you are a better person, friend, sibling and parent.