It takes some time to be ready to "do something" to heal from the shock, grief, and life changes that divorce brings.
Even if you were the person who initiated the separation or divorce, and you feel the first flushes of freedom, that's just the beginning. As you begin living in your new reality, challenges and emotions arise that you may not have been prepared for.
It takes time.
But, how much time?
The rule of thumb from many experts is that it takes the half-life of the relationship. If you were together for 10 years, prepare to be suffering for 5. If you were together for 20 years; 10 years to fully recover emotionally.
As you know, if you've been reading my blog and are familiar with my website, it was precisely this kind of news that led me to create my own system for emotional healing.
So, how long will it take until you're ready to start getting better? I don't think it's a matter of a timetable. My experience has taught me that you start to heal whenever you reach that point of being fed up with feeling this way, and you get really clear that no more of your life will be lived like this.
How do I know when someone is ready to stop grieving, ready to start working to let go of the past, and ready to open up to what her future might be like?
Here are the top 5 signs I look for:
1. You're angrier than you are sad. You're sick and tired of being sick and tired.
You're looking at the time you've lost in unhappy years with husband #1, #2, or #3, and you're doing the math: X unhappy married years + X months/years of separation/divorce proceedings + X months/years shell-shocked and grieving (maybe even trying to get him back) = ____ years of your life gone.
And you wake up one day, and you say to yourself, "No more!"
2. You're tired of spinning your wheels in therapies that keep you stuck or groups that just keep drowning your sorrows.
You think, "I've been going to therapy, I've been going to support group, I've been attending church, I've been ________________ (fill in the blank). Why isn't it getting better?"
It doesn't make sense that it has to take so many years or unending expense of open-ended therapy in order to feel whole again. You're ready to think out of the box and try something completely different.
3. You're ready to try almost anything, as long as you start seeing positive change and feeling hope.
You've decided this: The program that's right for you has to bring you measurable results, not just endless talking and commisserating. You realize that the free-of-charge program or the cheapest solution isn't the best solution because you've already tried those. You're ready to work with someone who can help you set goals and you're willing to be accountable for following the program to get there. You're ready to talk with a new coach or two to find someone who can give you what others could not. You want your life back so much you can taste it.
4. You're ready to put in a little work to stop suffering.
You're not feeling as strong as you want to be. In fact, you're still feeling sad and wiped out most days, but you're willing to start taking baby steps. It's just hard for you to see the big picture right now. But you are ready to take some action, consistently, and build from there. You're not an excuses kind of person.
5. You're starting to feel deeply curious about what your life could be like if you started thinking out of the box. You've been thinking, "What if . . ."
You're wondering if there could be more to life for you than what you've been conditioned to think. You're wondering if life could be fun again. You'd love to have more friends. You'd love to have people in your life who care about you and who encourage you to do the things you love. Or, maybe you just want to figure out what things you do love.
Every once in a while, you have a glimpse of a feeling of freedom, a feeling that now your life belongs to you, or that it could start belonging to you a little bit more. But, then you start to feel afraid. And then, you go back to #1 on this list: You're angrier than you are sad. You do want your life back.
Here's one thing you could do next:
Now might be a good time to chat with me, while I'm still doing my 30-minute free Virtual Coffee Dates. Unlike an initial consultation with a therapist, my coffee dates aren't just me listening or just an intake session -- you'll leave the call with some practical steps to help you right now.
Why else would it be a good idea to chat with me? Because in early December, I'll be rolling out a very special discount offer on a choice of any of my 4-month coaching programs. This is my first time doing this offer, and the purpose is to help you get through the holidays, and hit the ground running to already be feeling quite a bit better by New Year.
Imagine, when you make your New Year's Resolutions this year, you'll feel so wonderful because you'll already be on your way.
So, if you book a Virtual Coffee Date with me soon, and if we decide that we're a great fit to work together, you'll be first in line for the generously discounted coaching to start in December. This is the first time this entire year that I've offered any discounts at all, and I work with a very small number of clients, in individual sessions, at any one time. This means that I never have room for more than a few new clients. If you have an intuitive feeling that you might want to be one of them, a beautiful, no-obligation first step would be to spend a free 30 minutes with me.
And, I need to say one more thing about this. I am not someone who will ever try to talk you into anything. About 50% of the time, I don't think that a particular person is a great fit for my program because she's not at the point where I believe she will follow through, or I feel that what she needs is something other than my program. My maximum, full schedule is just 10 clients at any one time, so if I suggest a program to you, it's because I truly feel it will be the best possible experience for you, and that you will be thrilled with the process and the outcome.
Because I have the opportunity to do Virtual Coffee Dates with many women, I'm able to give some quick assistance, free, to a large number of divorcees as well as to offer ongoing coaching only to those who would benefit most.
If you feel so moved, you can see my schedule below. Click on any date to see which hours are available for a Virtual Coffee Date chat, with valuable, unique-to-you coaching content on the call, whether or not we find that we're a great fit for each other: