Managing your Divorce is like having eggs AND pancakes for breakfast.
We are clearly in the midst of the holiday season, because my blog posts this and last week have something to do with food.
So I have another confession. I'm very picky about my breakfast plate, especially when I'm having one of those big all-you-can-eat brunch-style breakfasts. I'll totally dig into the eggs AND the pancakes, and I'll probably go back for seconds.
But there is one thing that I'll never allow during my brunch breakfast binge. The pancakes and the eggs absolutely cannot touch on the plate. Like, ever.
They have be kept separated. Actually, I'll usually use two different plates. One has the pancakes and syrup. The other one has the eggs and bacon. No chance of touching. I do this because I really do not like the result of allowing pancake syrup to mix with my eggs.
Think of your divorce the same way. (I know, this sounds strange. Stay with me.)
There are two things on your plate when you're getting divorced. They are:
No. 1 - How you feel.
No. 2 - The decisions you'll make to bring your divorce to conclusion.
And they should never, ever touch on your plate. Like, ever.
How you feel is the sweet, yummy, fluffy pile of pancakes with a beautiful pat of butter on top and just the right amount of syrup. Y'know enough syrup that it kind of slowly drips down the side of the pile after you pour it on, but not so much syrup that it completely drenches the pancakes because. . . well. . . that's gross.
The decisions you'll make to bring your divorce to conclusion are the protein-filled eggs with just the right amount of salt on them.
Most of you are not only letting them touch on the plate, you're mixing everything around so much that you can no longer tell which is which. I'm almost throwing up in my mouth just thinking about it.
Please don't misunderstand me to be saying that you should not be feeling anything during your divorce. I'm actually saying the opposite. I want you to allow yourself to feel all of the feelings -- the anger, the spitefulness, the punch-in-your-gut sadness. All of them.
Allowing feelings looks like doing nothing. You just feel the feelings, watch them as if you are separate from them. Observe them with curiosity, knowing the whole time that you are creating those feelings but not looking to change them at all. Describe the feelings as if you are describing the physical sensations to an alien that doesn't understand the concept of feelings.
Allowing feelings is a very still, very quiet activity. Allowing feelings and doing nothing is simple, but it's not easy. Like anything else, it will take practice.
The process of allowing your feelings is totally separate from making decisions in your divorce.
Making decisions in your divorce involves understanding the alternatives -- meaning, really understanding what you're getting and what you're giving if you choose one alternative over the other, and deliberately deciding and owning the option that you will choose. That's it.
Making decisions in your divorce has nothing to do with finding the decision that will "make" you feel better. That's not a thing. Your feelings are separate.
Clients who look for the decision that is going to "make" them feel better will take action that is not productive in their divorces. They will waste time. They will spend more money on lawyers. They will create obstacles that get in the way of concluding the divorce. And, the entire time they are doing this, they will say "I just want it to be over with."
I see it over and over again.
So keep the pancakes and the eggs separate on the plate. Better yet, use my strategy of picking up two plates. You need both of the plates. You really do. You just can't let them touch.
Be well, my friends. Talk to you soon.