Family, Heartbreak

Going Through A Divorce? 5 Tips To Keep Things From Getting Messy

I received an email announcing an awesome conference for women contemplating or going through a divorce. I was excited to see that it included professionals experienced in family law, financial planning and counseling. This is an important combination for anyone considering ending a romantic partnership.

The event looked great, and it reminding me of two clients that went through complex divorces. It also brought back memories of my own divorce from a 14-year marriage. And, I was also reminded of a painful missing truth that I have yet to see taught in any seminar, training or write-up about divorce. You are going to learn about that truth right here, right now.

Of my two clients, one had already gone through the divorce process and was cleaning up the mess that followed. There were kids and an estate, and it wasn't pretty. Communication was horrific and my client was convinced her attorney must have been paid by her ex to make her go through hell, and stayed there. We had to do extensive damage control before more damage ensued.

The other client came to me before she decided to file for divorce. We followed a very thorough and methodical process that resulted in an amicable divorce, despite the fact that the breakup was fueled by a discovery of hidden money and some serious indiscretions. There were kids and property for this client as well.

The difference had to do with specific pre-planning and also an ongoing understanding of key personality traits that would impact the results forever.

My ex-wife and I did our own divorce and wrote our own legal documents, which assured us a quick and speedy resolution. We had three young children and a small estate at the time. We both wanted out, and despite help from city attorneys, we missed a few very minor things. We were super lucky in the divorce process, but not so lucky when it came to the impact on our children.

I don't want you to get discouraged. I want you to be enthusiastic, because catastrophes, battles and long-term emotional damage can be thwarted. This is how:

1. If you know for sure you want a divorce, be smart about it.

There is a good deal of valuable information on the Internet when it comes to planning for a divorce. For women, I highly recommend the site Womans Divorce. You are just being lazy and naïve if you don't spend some time there. Men should check it out too. Think level playing ground.

You must take the time to learn as much as you can and plan way in advance. Regardless of whether your separation is mutual or not, do your own homework first. There are financial issues and emotional issues many people never think of. With the Internet, you have absolutely no excuse for not knowing about these things before they happen.

2. Make love not war.

You must never think of the divorce process as an act of war. Agatha Christie said, "One is left with the horrible feeling now that war settles nothing; that to win a war is as disastrous as to lose one." Warring over a divorce ensures there will be losses beyond your expectation or imagination. And, if there are kids, there will be losses that extend through generations.

You must take care of yourself in a way that allows you to love who you are, allows you to bury any hatchets, and to focus on living a healthy and peaceful life. There is absolutely nothing to win by exacting revenge, laying blame or living in shame. Despite the intensity of the opposition, think peaceful settlement.

To drive this point home, brutal divorce actions are for people with shortened life spans. Through poor nutrition, addictions, anger and hostility, in one way or another, they are killing themselves. We have all either been there or we have seen it happening. Choose life, and make it a long and healthy one.

3. You must pick an attorney, financial advisor or counselor that is an energetic match.

By energetic match, I mean someone that you can easily and accurately communicate with and who has a strategy and relationship with money that matches your own. With my clients, I use Genetic Energetics to quickly discover the communication style and the financial logics of the professionals I am considering hiring. I look at a number of other characteristics too, but these two are critical.

Here is why. Think of the last time you communicated with someone, and despite your best attempts you were frequently having to correct each other because of misunderstandings. It's no fun. When it comes to legal counsel, if you and your attorney speak in two variations of the same language that feels like one is speaking Japanese and the other Spanish, this is what will happen:

  • You will never fully trust them
  • You wont want to spend important time with them because they wear you out
  • You will eventually conclude they don't have your best interest in mind.
  • You will not get results that you will NOT be happy with immediately, or long term.

It does not matter how many cases have been won or how highly acclaimed your legal counsel is. You must be in energetic alignment with them. When you're not, the outcome is far too damaging. I encounter the aftershock of energetic mismatches frequently and this is exactly what happened with the first client I wrote about.

You can figure out if you have the same communication style in a of couple ways:

  • Interview the attorney.
  • Observe how well they listen to your communication.
  • Allow yourself to have a relaxing conversation and notice if you feel like you have just met a new best friend, or if you are simply feeling like this "qualified" professional can do the job.
  • Make sure to talk about your beliefs and feelings in regard to the work ahead.
  • Ask them to give feedback on what you've shared. You want to feel seen and not judged. You want to feel a close connection driven by clear communication.

4. Get with a financial planner that specializes in divorces.

If you have no estate and no kids, this may not be necessary. But, if you either of you do, it's essential. You have the present and the future to plan for. You want to be sure that you are aware of how your financial manager energetically relates to money.

Some people are very conservative and aware of every penny saved, spent or invested. They have a natural heightened responsibility and are unable to let the constraints around money go. Others are far less concerned. They have an attitude that money will always be there when they need it. When it comes to planning for the future or being aware of the reality of the present, these two variations make a huge difference. There is no right or wrong, but there must be an awareness of which type you/your advisor are, in order to avoid oversights or exclusions that have immediate or long-term negative implications.

Here are few key questions you can ask a financial manager to define their financial logic:

  1. "I'm just curious, do you keep a check register?" Sounds silly, but people who are less on the ball, or not concerned about how much money they have, do this. If they don't, they overdraw their bank account.  (By the way, this might be you.)
  2. "How do you suggest I organize my finances?" If they tell you to make a list of what you earn and what you spend, versus providing you with a spread sheet to complete in detail—and which can be used to evaluate net worth, cost of living and variations on income—know that the first strategy is more relaxed.  The more relaxed strategy would concern me.
  3. "Can you show me what I should be aware of to prepare for divorce?" If you ask them this and they don't come up with at least a half dozen detailed categories to address, you have the wrong person. 

Bottom line is that it's important to understand your logic around money, and also the logic of your ex and your financial advisor. If you don't, decisions will be made that you will not happy with.

5. Beware of "Chemistry." Yes, you will very likely be at a point where you don't feel the chemistry you had in the beginning. Regardless, if it was strong when you met, it is still there with elevated testosterone, dopamine, oxytocin, PEA, serotonin and norepinephrine lurking behind all your reasons for the divorce. This means, now that you are divorcing, never assume your ex is going to come through with something they never did before. You must be discerning, level headed, and fair. 

Also, chemistry is not just about romance. It plays a role in how we pick our friends, business partners and yes, also our legal advisors. If you really, really like your advisors and want to go with them without the due diligence above, you're on drugs (literally brain chemicals). Don't make rash decisions.

If you don't trust your ability to ascertain communication styles and logic around money, you can go the easy route and get complimentary Energetic Profiles from MatchMatrix or more complex reports if you want them.

With my client that went through a healthy divorce that resulted in a fair and well-thought out settlement, we went through the process of selection together. Instead of miscommunications and concerns, we felt like we were on the same team with our legal and financial advisors. Despite the painful circumstances of the separation and divorce, the ex-wife and ex-husband made solid decisions about their children and today have a friendly relationship that supports their kids' emotional health.

As for my divorce, that was over a decade ago and I was a novice when it came to understanding the emotional complexities for children during and after divorce. Thankfully, I have amazing grown-up children, but it was not easy for them despite our good intentions. If I knew then what I know today, things would have been different. Having spent the last 9 years testing, studying, counseling and teaching genetic energetics has made a monumental difference in my relationship with my kids that is priceless.

If you are considering or going through a separation or divorce, I implore you to take your time. Do your homework. Become fully aware of your genetic energetic characteristics and influences. These steps will keep you out of emotional hell and prevent you from being scarred from the experience. The result is that you can move on, not broken, but stronger, better informed and more capable of love than before you started.

Are you contemplating a separation or divorce? Sage advise, wisdom and professional services are essential. A relationship counselor or coach can help you pull the right team together and strategize for the healthiest outcome. Please avoid costly battles and unnecessary services. Separation and divorce does not need to be emotionally or financially expensive. Please contact me here. I understand the problem well. I've used the steps and I'm here to help. You can start with this free Personal Energetic Profile.