Self, Health And Wellness

10 Self-Care Tips That Will Save Your Sanity During A Heartbreaking Divorce

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Self-Care Tips For Stress Management, Anxiety, & Mental Health When Dealing With Divorce

The heartbreak of getting a divorce can cause a ton of stress, depression and anxiety.

That's why it's important to learn healthy coping mechanisms and stress management techniques that will stop you from ruminating on the negatives.

By practicing a little self-care, you can learn how to reduce stress, and how to deal with a broken heart while going through the divorce process.

RELATED: 4 Self-Care Techniques That'll Help You Heal From Divorce Wounds

Learning how to take care of yourself is one of the best things you can do for yourself.

It’s easy to put yourself and your mental health last on the list. You take care of your family and you prioritize work. This doesn't leave much time for yourself.

So, the question is, are you taking care of yourself when you're coping with divorce?

Our bodies are like a car. They need fuel. Just like you need to fill your car up with fuel, you need to fill your body up with fuel.

This starts by doing simple self-care tips such as getting enough rest, eating nutrient-rich foods, and drinking plenty of water.

And don’t forget about hygiene. It’s easy to rush out of the house in the morning without a shower.

This will help wake you up and have you smelling fresh and I’m sure your friends and family will appreciate this.

Taking care of yourself is not selfish.

You should not feel guilty about taking part in self-care activities. It really is true, we can’t take care of anyone else unless we have taken care of ourselves.

And, in the event of dealing with divorce and heartbreak, learning how to focus on yourself and your needs will also help you enjoy life, a little more.

Here are 10 self-care tips to take care of yourself and your mental health when coping with divorce.

1. Get enough sleep

It will help your memory. We have become a sleep-deprived culture. The cost is forgetfulness.

Have you ever noticed when you haven’t had enough sleep, that you make more mistakes? This can affect your family and your work performance. Make sure you get at least eight hours of sleep. Take a 30-minute nap in the middle of the day.

Not being able to sleep well is one of the effects of stress from the divorce, so make a concerted effort to get some rest.

Your mind will thank you for it.

2. Change how you talk to yourself

You won’t be so hard on yourself. Do you continue to ruminate about your regrets? Are you always criticizing yourself?

You can change that inner critic. When you start to take better care of yourself and put yourself first, you will go easier on yourself. You are human and you will make mistakes.

The best thing you can do is learn from them and move on.

3. Make time for yourself

It will help your mood. Have you been more irritable since deciding to get divorced? This can happen when you put yourself last on the list.

Taking care of yourself will help you feel better about yourself. It will also help you set better boundaries. So, you can stop saying yes when you mean no.

Your friends and family will thank you for this in the long run.

4. Have some fun

Want to know how to cope with stress? Have more fun!

 As you get older, it’s easy to put fun on the bottom of the list. You are in a relationship, you have kids, a house and a job.

So, this doesn’t leave much time for fun. Think back to when you were a child and fun just seemed to happen. You would be on the playground at school with your friends playing and laughing.

Put fun first on the list again! You won’t regret it.

5. Start doing regular exercise

It will help your heart. Exercise is one of the best forms of self-care, yet so many people cut it out of their life. Schedule time for exercise.

You can start by walking 10 minutes in one direction from your house and then walk back. There you go, you added 20 minutes of walking into your day.

You are off to a good start. Try adding some weight lifting to your exercise regime.

Not only is this good for your heart, but it's also good for your strength. Especially as you get older.

People who have a regular exercise routine report feeling better, and you can’t beat the endorphin high.

RELATED: The Life-After-Divorce Checklist You Need If You Want To Find Happiness On Your Own

6. Make sure your plans are attainable

You will be more realistic. It’s good to have dreams. In all honesty, it would be concerning if you didn’t.

But there is another side. Do you have a realistic plan? Do you know what you are really capable of? Are you ready for some honest feedback?

If not, then you probably aren’t being realistic. A lot of people give up on their dreams, which is unfortunate. If you have a realistic plan and some realistic mentors, there's a much better chance of your dreams coming true.

7. Focus more on what you can do now

You won’t feel as stressed out. Tired of always worrying about the future? Will you have enough money, love, time, etc.?

You can’t predict the future. Many people spend too much time thinking ahead; this creates a lot of unnecessary stress.

Not only do a lot of people spend way too much time trying to predict the future, they often predict it will turn out bad.

If you can’t stop trying to predict the future, then at least predict a positive outcome.

8. Let go of people who aren't a good influence on your life

It will help you end toxic relationships. Are there people in your life who you just can’t seem to let go of? You know they aren’t good for you.

They only call you when they need something. And they talk negatively about you behind your back. These people will only keep you down, which is what they want.

When you feel better about yourself, it’s easier to let go of bad relationships.

9. Pay attention to your physical and mental health

You will be a better caregiver. When you don’t take care of yourself, you are at risk for burnout. This makes it difficult to take care of others and yourself.

It can also make you feel jealous of friends and family who actually care about you. It’s hard to feel appreciative when you feel burnt out.

10. Enjoy yourself

You won’t take life so seriously. You will be able to ride through the highs and lows of everything more easily. You begin to realize you don’t have to be perfect and neither does anyone else.

You have realistic expectations of others and yourself.

 You’ve already gotten through some difficult times and realize you can do it again, if you have to.

Let’s face it, you’ve been around someone who just takes life way too seriously, and you probably couldn’t wait to get away.

Enjoy where you are in life and the people you are with.

You live in a fast-paced world where it’s easy to focus on what you don’t have, rather than what you do have, especially when you are going through getting a divorce.

This leaves you feeling like you never have enough. If you keep thinking this way, you will burn out. This can cause many unnecessary problems in your life.

Who has time for unnecessary problems?

RELATED: 12 Ways To Handle Your Divorce With Dignity And Class

Lianne Avila is a marriage & family therapist helping people in San Mateo, CA who are looking to create a life that is happier and more fulfilling. Please subscribe to Lianne’s newsletter at to learn more about her services and expertise.

This article was originally published at Lessons for Love. Reprinted with permission from the author.