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Roughly half of marriages in both the UK and the US end in divorce, but, whilst divorce rates are falling or plateauing in other age groups, later-life (or silver) divorce is on the rise.
Most people understand the risks that marriage brings, but no one gets married with the expectation of dealing with divorce. According to AARP, women initiate about 60% of US divorces after age 40, However, even if you were the person who instigated it, divorce ranks as one of the most stressful situations anyone can go through. Dealing with a divorce and its aftermath is no small matter. It requires patience and stamina. There are no shortcuts.
That doesn’t mean that the process of getting over a divorce will take years. How long it takes is largely up to you. There is life after divorce.
These tips will help you move on to your new life as a single person:
Give yourself time before dating again. How much time you require is an individual decision. But there’s no rush. When you begin dating before you’re ready, not only are you potentially creating additional challenges for yourself, but consider your dates, too! They might be getting more than they bargained for. Take the time you need to heal.
Take the opportunity to make over your life. Now might be the perfect time to join a gym, start a new hobby, or travel. When you’re married, you have to accommodate the needs and wishes of another person. You can give yourself more consideration for a change.
What would you like to change about yourself and your life?
Learn from your divorce. What went wrong? What did you learn? What were the good and bad qualities of your partner? What type of person do you believe would be the best match for you? What mistakes did you make along the way?
A divorce is painful, but a great learning opportunity. You can have much more confidence in your next relationship if you use what you learn.
Forgive. You can’t truly move on until you’ve forgiven your ex-spouse. This may take time. But you’re never really free until you’re able to forgive.
Get the support you need. This might take the form of a friend or family member. There are also support groups for the newly divorced. Avoid the mistake of attempting to navigate your healing process alone.
Maintain your daily routines. This means to continue to bathe, brush your teeth, and so on each day. Continue to eat healthy meals. Go to bed at your normal time. Keep your normal social outings. It’s easy to fall into a slump and to allow the quality of your life to deteriorate. Some things will change, but many things can stay the same.
Avoid making your situation worse. This isn’t the time to overeat, drink excessively, or start using drugs. A rebound relationship also isn’t advised. Get your feet back on the ground and avoid doing anything that can make your challenging circumstances ever harder.
Get out of the house. Not only can you keep your previous social schedule, you can consider adding to it. Join a yoga class or a golf league. Create something new that you can enjoy with others. You won’t find any solutions while you’re sitting on the couch, staring out the window.
Share your feelings with a divorced friend. It’s important to talk to someone who has had the same experience. Confide in someone that has successfully moved on from divorce.
- If you're female, join us in the Association of Retired Single Women Facebook group. We're a friendly lot - mostly happy to be single and not particularly looking for another relationship (but we haven't completely closed that door to the right person.) Instead, we try to get the most out of our lives - traveling, hobbies, moving to new areas (or new countries!), some of us are still working and some are starting retirement businesses.
Divorce is stressful and unsettling. There are almost 900,000 divorces each year in the United States and over 111,000 in the UK. You’re certainly not alone. Give yourself time to grieve and heal. In time, your life can be even better than it was before. Use this opportunity to reinvent yourself and your life.
Here are the questions from the above post turned into journalling prompts:
This won't be to everyone's taste but the Living to 100 Life Expectancy Calculator uses the most current and carefully researched medical and scientific data in order to estimate how old you will live to be.
Apparently, most people score in their late eighties... how about you?
The calculator asks you 40 quick questions related to your health and family history, and takes about 10 minutes to complete. At the end, you will be asked to create an account to store your answers. Click here to find your score...
Everyone has a bad day now and then. You only have two choices: you can either ride it out, or do something to turn the day around. A time machine isn't an option, but there are plenty of tactics you can apply to put your day on a more satisfying path. You might have woken up on the wrong side of the bed, but there's still time to salvage the day and extract some value from it.
Get the most from a day that's got off to a rough start:
1. Take a shower or bath. A hot tub might be even better (if you have access to one). It doesn't matter if the water is hot or cold. Just the sensation of the water on your skin can change your mood and perspective. It will certainly snap you out of any negative thinking.
2. Take a nap. A short nap can give you a chance to start your day over with a fresh attitude.
3. Speak with a friend. You know that friend that can always cheer you up? Give her a call and allow her to work her magic. She's probably dying to hear from you anyway.
4. Eliminate something from your schedule. Determine the least significant thing on your schedule and drop it. Once a day gets started on the wrong foot, accomplishing everything on your to-do list can seem hopeless. Give yourself some hope.
5. Spend time with a pet. You might feel better after watching your fish or hermit crab wander around, but petting a dog or cat might be more effective.
6. Make yourself laugh. Watch a funny movie. Read a few jokes. Make good use of YouTube.
7. Listen to music that makes you feel better. You already know which song always makes you smile. Listen to it. In fact, create a playlist of songs that you can listen to at a moment's notice. Keep them handy. Your cell phone might be the perfect storage location.
8. Get some exercise. Any sort of exercise will do. Go for a run. Lift some weights or play some tennis. Get your blood pumping and your lungs working. As long as you don't overdo it, you're bound to have a more positive perspective on your day.
9. Create a gratitude list. When you're feeling down, there's a good chance you're too focused on the parts of your life you perceive negatively. Put your attention on something positive. Make a list of the good things and remind yourself of how terrific your life is already.
10. Look at some photographs. Pull out your high school yearbook or check out your friends' photos on Facebook. Remind yourself of what you and your siblings looked like 30 years ago. Keep a few photos on your phone that always make you smile.
11. Have some chocolate. Chocolate is an effective way to enhance your mood. Dark chocolate is even good for you! A bad day isn't an excuse to eat your own body weight in chocolate, but a few aquares might be the solution to your bad day.
12. Meditate. Meditation has become a popular stress solution. Many large companies are even adding meditation rooms to the workplace. Regular meditation can greatly uplift your mood and strengthen your focus.
Remember that what seems like a bad day might only be a bad minute that has soured your perspective. Bad days can seem to occur at random, but that doesn't mean you have to suffer through it. You can turn your day around. Take a deep breath and make the best of it. You know plenty of tactics to fight back!
Is there something you've always meant to do, wanted to do, but just ... haven't?
Matt Cutts suggests: Try it for 30 days.
This short, lighthearted talk offers a neat way to think about setting and achieving goals.
Robert Waldinger is the Director of the Harvard Study of Adult Development, one of the most comprehensive longitudinal studies in history.