If you’re wandering through the mist of madness that surrounds your divorce and having trouble sleeping, look to Mother Nature’s garden for a few floral solutions for getting the rest you urgently need.
There are a great many plants, the aromas from which can have significantly calming effects upon your system. Lavender, chamomile and valerian are very commonly used, but do a little research on sage, linden and raspberry too.
I stayed in a hotel once that had a long sprig of rosemary, bound in the centre by a strip of beautiful lace and tied in a bow which was placed upon the pillow. Not only did it look utterly gorgeous, but the oils imparted from the plant left a delightful smell on the fabric and I slept like a log…
Instant messages shared between friends and sent via mobile phones or computers, offer immediate solutions to getting stuff off your chest.
Be wary of the fact that they can be recorded, given permanence and used by people who want to rock your boat.
The trouble is, it can actually feel quite liberating to write about how you’re feeling to a voiceless chum. When you’re having a bad day, the temptation to let off steam can be overwhelming.
If you’re being particularly derisory about your ex, consider whether you would post the same message on the outside wall of their parent’s house, or splash it across the counter of your local post office, or paint it in the playground of a nearby school?
Instant messages can hold infamous last words that spread faster than the flu.
If you find yourself at the sharp end of an ex’s forked and vicious tongue, hold onto the words ‘It will end’.
I know how incredibly difficult that can be, especially when you are trying to find shelter from relentless daily attacks from your ex.
But even the largest and noisiest of steam trains loses momentum eventually and every wordy attack you are bombarded by, will find you one step closer to them giving up and shutting up.
Hang on in there, ‘It will end’.
Divorce can be very expensive on your physical and mental health.
While your brain is busy fighting ‘The They’ and the horse they rode in on, your body will do all it can to keep you well and healthy, but it might fail miserably and catch every bug known to man just to add to your woes.
It might seem insignificant, but try to eat a couple of pieces of fruit that excites you every day to boost your defences.
By exciting fruit, I mean the special stuff you usually reserve for guests or people in hospital…
I cannot think of a nicer reason for putting a sticker on the fruit bowl saying ‘Hands off – medicinal purposes only’!
If you’ve a day ahead filled with horrid paperwork that needs wading through and reading, or worse still, filling in, reach for a few things to make the process gentler.
Ensure you have adequate supplies of tea, coffee or whatever you favourite hot beverage is. I can highly recommend chamomile and the many other blends of calming teas available. Go for organic if you can.
Also, make sure you have a sweet or savory supply of naughty nibbles to sustain you. The radio might be another key ingredient, not too distracting and just enough to keep you company as you wade through the pages.
And finally, if you have any lavender essential oil, be sure to put a good few drops on your wrists, just behind your knees or behind your ears. It’s incredibly calming stuff and straight from the garden of Mother Nature herself.
Scent is very evocative and can set off all sorts of memory triggers.
If you enjoy wearing a perfume, consider investing in a new brand to mark your transition into a new flavour of you.
If you’re feeling really psyched by this idea, do a little internet research and find a perfumery and book a session with a professional who will help you concoct a perfect blend of your favourite aromas.
Alternatively, if the budget won’t allow quite that much extravagance, visit a local health food store and buy some calming phials of essential oils like lavender, rose geranium, coconut or neroli (which can help you sleep too).
Lavender is just about the only essential oil you can put straight on the skin, around the pulse points is the best way to start it working on soothing your nervous system and giving you the pleasure of the aroma too. Others will need a base carrier oil, like sweet almond or cold-pressed rosehip.
Just ask the assistant, they will be only too glad to get you on a natural new track.
It is personally destructive to look upon your years gone by with vitriol, even if your ex was a complete and utter horror to be with.
Reach for a different perspective (if only for a short time before your ex lashes out with another barbed spike of irritation) and try to remember three nice things about them from your good times together.
There were probably more than three things that attracted you to them in the first instance.
Revisiting a happy place in your mind can be a very positive personal step forward, brief though it may be before you cast the thought aside, pick up your pieces and move on.
Anybody that took their partner’s surname when they got married, may feel like divorcing them is simply not enough.
Moving away from association with their name can be incredibly cathartic and can mark the start of the healing process.
In the UK you can use a Deed Poll to change your name to anything you wish, including your maiden name. It costs around �25 and legally, you don’t actually have to use them, but official documentation from them makes it easier to effect name changes with other authorities, like banks, the passport office and so on.
One final tip: if you do decide to change your name, don’t beat yourself up for signing things with your old signature for a while. That mental adjustment takes a little time to get used to.
If you’ve moved away from your marital home, it’s a fair assumption that you had very good reasons for doing so.
Going back to your former home for any reason is likely to be emotionally taxing and it’s worth thinking ahead to ways you can reduce the amount of times you have to do so.
Collecting your mail is an easy one to tick off the list by organising a simple redirect with the post office.
It might seem like an irritating expense but you’ll ensure all important documents and divorce correspondence arrive on your doormat and you’ll no longer be beholden to the ex for looking after it.
If you are on the run up to leaving your soon-to-be-ex, be sure to compile a checklist of important documentation you need to take with you and tick every item off in turn.
Your birth certificate, your passport (and those for your children if applicable), also your driving license paperwork, key ID cards and papers, mortgage details, bank cards, cheque books and your marriage certificate, will be invaluable bits of paper in the months ahead.
You need your marriage certificate to file for divorce in the UK and I suspect in many other countries too.
It is possible to request certified copies of things, but it can be a costly affair and would throw unnecessarily delaying spanners in your works.