Starting over after a divorce is about learning to love yourself and developing self-trust. It’s an inner journey which involves examining your past from a fresh perspective and taking risks. You’re definitely venturing into unfamiliar territory, and it’s the perfect time to make changes in your appearance, career, and activities; or even finding new friends and social outlets.
Truth be told, that’s exactly what happened to me. During my divorce, it became obvious to me that I had lost the essence of myself in my marriage. Like many women, I was a people pleaser who spent a lot of energy trying to comfort and appease others – neglecting my own needs. As a result, I often put my needs last. In the process, I compromised too much and was left feeling like I had morphed into someone else.
The first step to regaining my identity after my divorce was freeing myself up to make some fairly radical changes. For instance, I changed my hair colour and began wearing more stylish clothes. Many of my friends complimented me on my “new” look. I also started taking the time to eat a healthier diet and exercise daily. As a result, I lost weight and began to feel more energized. Looking back, they were pretty innocent changes, yet my family and friends were pleasantly surprised. The tips I’m passing on to you aren’t without risk and may be a challenge – but the beauty is in stretching yourself!
8 Tips for successful reinvention after divorce:
1. Make a fairly radical change in your appearance— including your hairstyle, make-up, clothing, or even losing that extra five kilos you’ve wanted to shed. It’s a great way to shake things up.
2. Set a goal to take up yoga, Zumba, running, weights; or, any exercise routine that works for you. Most importantly, plan to do it at least three times a weight (combining two types can work well). Inviting a friend to join you can encourage you to stick with your plan.
3. Set a goal to shed toxic relationships and develop healthy ones. Surround yourself with people who support your journey and can allow you to build self-worth. Don’t settle for less than you deserve.