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How to Manage Stress During a Divorce

Ending a marriage can be one of the most stressful experiences of a lifetime. Change itself is usually stressful, and the reasons for getting a divorce frequently are additional stressors. Add to this the fact that divorce remains somewhat stigmatized, and guilt and shame generate additional stress. Managing this stress can be critical to your health and well-being, not to mention impacting your work and other relationships. Here are some important considerations.

Taking Control of the Legal Aspects of Divorce Stress

Many of us can spend a lifetime without contact with the legal world, short of an occasional parking ticket. Even lawyers and people who interact with them frequently are not accustomed to dealing with the law in their personal lives. Rather than feel confused, overwhelmed, and helpless, anyone can exercise some stress management by approaching the legal aspects of divorce with these issues in mind:

  • Ignorance is not bliss. Considering how much of your life can be disrupted by a divorce, it helps to understand the legal process. Knowing what’s to come, what will be expected of you, and what you can expect from a divorce can demystify and relieve anxiety related to the unknown.
  • Open communication: In a divorce, the professionals on your team are your allies and advocates. Keep in contact with them, starting with your family law attorney and including your accountant and counselors, to ensure your concerns are addressed, and you are up to date on any developments in the case.
  • Seek support: The loss of an intimate relationship can feel isolating, but you do not have to go through your divorce alone. In addition to your divorce team, lean on sympathetic friends and family and explore support groups to unburden yourself from the entire emotional weight of the experience. There are several divorce support groups in Bethesda, Maryland, and virtual groups can also fill this need.
  • Eyes on the prize: Divorce takes time, and it can be hard to feel like you want to move on with your life, but you are stuck in a process. Remember your long-term goals and apply them to your decisions as you navigate your divorce.

Tending to Your Body and Spirit in a Divorce

With all the changes and likely conflicts involved in a divorce, it can be hard to remember that you should be taking care of yourself. Engaging in practices that maintain and heal the assault on your physical and mental health can ease the burden that divorce can exact on you.

  • Exercise is critical. Aside from the health benefits of exercise, physical activity releases endorphins that relax the body and ease stress. This may not be the right time to jump into marathon training since you have enough on your plate. Instead, maintain an exercise routine that keeps you moving daily with activities as simple as walking.
  • We are what we eat. Good nutrition helps support health, and it can have real benefits when it comes to stress. For instance, sugary foods come with highs and lows that can increase stress and sap energy. Instead of eating junk food, take care of your body to give yourself the energy you need to cope with your divorce.
  • Get enough sleep. The benefits of sleep cannot be overstated. However, during a divorce, there can be so many consuming thoughts and feelings that sleep becomes elusive. Consider practicing sleep hygiene by timing exercise and eating well before going to bed and keeping phones and tablets out of the bedroom.
  • Practice therapeutic techniques. Mindfulness, meditation, deep breathing, yoga, and other activities can be incredibly helpful in restoring and maintaining balance in your life during a divorce. These practices help relieve stress and bring equilibrium to your body and mind.
  • Give yourself “me” time. It can be hard to find ways to include self-care in the chaos caused by divorce, but you should make time for things that bring you joy to balance out all the difficult emotions you experience. Practice hobbies, read books, watch movies, or set aside time for whatever leaves you feeling calmer, happier, and more at peace.

Stress builds on itself, so you need to address it head-on. During your divorce, be aware of your stress levels and consider the many ways you can minimize it.


Thank you for reading our blog! 

If you need legal representation in Maryland or the District of Columbia, consider contacting Malech Law. With over 25 years of experience, we are committed to providing excellent service to our clients. Our accolades include the 2024 Family Law American Association of Attorney Advocates recognition, being a finalist in the 2024 Best of Bethesda Readers’ Pick for Best Family Law Practitioner, and winning the same award in 2022. We’ve also been honored with the Lawyers of Distinction Award for Excellence in Divorce and Family Law for the past five consecutive years. At Malech Law, we approach every case with respect, empathy, and a dedication to excellence. Contact us today for professional legal assistance.

Visit Malechlaw.com or call (202) 441-2107.

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