Monday, November 24, 2008

Thanksgiving Survival Guide for Divorced and Separated People

James J. Gross of the Maryland Divorce Legal Crier has another timely and very apt post on the holiday season. I always get a lot from his writing and I think many people experiencing family transitions will too. Although his post mentions Thanksgiving, his suggestions really can apply at any time during the year. I strongly agree with his approach of starting a new life and taking charge of the situation. Don't just sit back and feel bad. There are some fairly easy baby steps you can take to get your life back in order. Here's what James has to say:

"You probably didn’t expect to be divorced or separated on Thanksgiving at this time in your life. You probably feel like saying, 'Gee, thanks for another #@*!! personal growth experience.' Well, instead of staying at home feeling sorry for yourself and ordering pizza for Thanksgiving, here are some ideas to help you make it through the long holiday weekend.

"The first thing you have to do is get into action. Move your body and the head will follow. Go for a walk or a jog. Get to the gym and start losing that marriage fat. Start a dance class or take tennis lessons. Any activity is good that will get you moving. Don’t think about it. Just do it. Force yourself.

"The next thing to do is build a support network. This can be your friends, relatives, religious leader, neighbor or therapist. Join a support group. Participate in online support groups. It may seem to you that you are the only person in the world going through a divorce, but you are not alone.

"Now, get outside of your troubles. Find someone with problems bigger than yours and help them. Volunteer to feed the homeless for Thanksgiving. Visit a nursing home or a hospital.

"Invite some friends over for a potluck supper. Everything is attitude. Stay positive and strong and have a great Thanksgiving. Leave a comment if you have an activity or idea that helped you survive Thanksgiving when going through a divorce."

Whatever your situation, no matter where you are in transitioning your life, these are great ideas to help you clear your mind and re-energize your life. Try these out and see if your spirits improve. Send a comment and let us know about your successes.

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