By Kimberly Pryor Wilkes, Award-Winning Author and Creator of The Rebuilding Your Life After Divorce DVDs
The New Year is the ideal time to let go of your painful past and move forward to a happier future. Whether you’re newly divorced or starting to date again, these three resolutions can keep you sane throughout the coming year.
1. “I will not beat myself up for things I could have done differently.”
Don’t get me wrong here. It’s really important to reflect on what went wrong in your marriage because that’s the only way you can prevent the same mistakes from happening in your next relationship. But the key here is to do this in a very gentle way where you’re not criticizing yourself for doing something wrong but rather making a game plan for your future so that you don’t make the same mistakes again.
2. “I will not rush into a new relationship while at the same time I won’t be afraid to get into the right relationship just because I was hurt in love before.”
You were with your ex for a long time and now you’re lonely on your own. You miss having someone to snuggle with at night. But don’t give in to the temptation to get involved with someone new until you’ve had time to grieve over the death of your marriage. If you haven’t grieved properly you risk getting involved in a rebound relationship.
On the other end of the spectrum is the temptation to completely block yourself off from dating and finding another love.
Yes, you need to take time to heal after your divorce. Time to think about what went wrong in your marriage and how you can make your next relationship last forever (see resolution #1). But there’s also the temptation to avoid getting into another relationship because you’re understandably scared of being hurt again.
It’s important to know whether you’ve healed enough to start dating again. If it is the right time, you want to avoid making excuses just because you’re scared to put yourself back out there.
Having the confidence to date again is often a matter of learning what you can do to decrease your chances of getting involved with the type of person who is more likely to hurt you and find someone really special who will lavish you with love and attention.
3. “I will let go of my anger towards my ex.”
Your ex hurt you. Hurt you badly. You have a right to be angry. But that anger is hurting only one person: yourself. It’s like stabbing yourself and expecting the person you’re angry at to feel the pain. If you have kids, that anger you feel toward your ex is also hurting your kids.
Anger is a natural part of the grieving process. So I’m not saying to suppress your anger. Doing that can be bad for both your mental and physical health.
Instead, give your anger a time limit. Let it simmer while you’re separated, but on the day of your divorce let it go. Anger that stays around too long can often turn into bitterness and bitterness can taint your next relationship—or stop you from getting involved in another relationship.
Anger tends to cling to us like Velcro. It’s a hard emotion to shake. You might feel your anger is justified—and if someone has hurt you, then indeed it is.
Maybe you feel that if you forgive your ex it’s like justifying what that person did to you. But that’s not what forgiving is about. Instead, forgiving is realizing that what your ex did to you was wrong, but you choose to let it stop hurting you anyway.
Forgiving is about realizing the future is more important than the past. It’s about realizing that if you cling to the past, nothing about your life is going to change in the future. If you stay bitter and angry, it acts like a block, pushing away happy circumstances and good people. If you’re bitter and angry, you might not even recognize good things when they do happen.
Look at it this way: your ex gave you a gift. They released you from a relationship with someone who doesn’t love you fully and completely. They set you free to find someone who will appreciate you, do nice things for you, love you for who you are.
Letting go of your anger isn’t easy. If you still feel angry or bitter or resentful no matter how hard you try to get rid of those feelings, Rosemary Manning teaches you a simple way to let go of your anger and feel at peace again on the Rebuilding Your Life After Divorce DVDs.
Bonus New Year’s Resolution: “I Will Not Go It Alone”
Joining a support group is an ideal way to surround yourself with people who have gone through what you’ve been through. Support groups are great, but if your support group is on a Thursday and you’re down in the dumps on a Monday, you’re out of luck.
That’s why I invite you to watch The Rebuilding Your Life After Divorce DVDs in the comfort of your own home whenever you need support. Along with more than a dozen speakers, I created these DVDs because I want to give you and other divorced people hope whenever you need it most.
If you make and keep the New Year’s Resolutions in this article, you’ll shed your heartache much quicker and move on to a new and happier life.
This blog article was brought to you by Kimberly Pryor Wilkes, dedicated to helping you heal your heartache after divorce and find a new love who will shower you with love and affection.