The end of a marriage can feel even worse than staying in one that’s broken. Even if you know it’s for the best, you’re still mourning a lost love and helping your kids navigate the significant change at home. Start the healing process with these eight tips to chill out when your ex just sucks. You’ll find new ways for everyone to put one foot forward every day and reach a new level of peace.
8 Tips to Chill Out When Your Ex Just Sucks
1. Get Some Space
Separating from your former spouse doesn’t always result in space to heal. They could call or text to get back in your good graces or use your kids as an excuse to continue showing up unexpectedly at home. Either way, it’s not healthy for you or your kids to stay in contact with someone who made your marriage toxic.
Get some space in person and online. Avoid places your former spouse will frequent in town and temporarily block them on social media. You can always unblock them or allow them to visit in person when you’ve reevaluated if it’s okay for them to potentially come back to your family’s life.
2. Talk About What Happened
It’s always a good idea to talk about the end of your marriage with your kids and loved ones. Your children will need help processing the major change in their lives, so check in with them and talk about your shared struggles. Your best friend could hold you while you cry and privately discuss the more complicated details.
If that’s not enough support, schedule an appointment with a therapist. They’ll help you sort through everything with positive strategies so you don’t accidentally burden loved ones with baggage that they don’t know how to professionally unpack with you.
3. Try Stress Reduction Habits
Separating and divorcing are stressful, but it’s not enough to grit your teeth and get through it. Long-term stress will result in complications other than sleepless nights or irritable moods. Stress will alter your mindset and even impact your physical health, along with sparking other complications like intense anxiety.
Stress reduction habits are some of the best ways to chill out when your ex just sucks. Journal your thoughts when you get overwhelmed or try meditating with breathing exercises. Don’t forget to include your children too. Color together or go for evening walks after dinner. Everyone will process things better when they’re in a stress-free headspace.
4. Listen to Your Body
People often get into the mindset of pushing through pain. It’s not the best strategy for your health, but it’s especially not helpful during a divorce. Sometimes you might need extra sleep after an emotionally challenging day. Other days you could feel restless and want to move or clean the house.
As long as you’re eating right and still taking care of yourself, listening to your body is an excellent way to find the healing you deserve. Show your kids how you’re paying attention to your physical health so they’ll pick up the healthy coping mechanism along with you.
5. Avoid Drastic Changes
When your former spouse crushes your heart, you may feel the need to make drastic changes. Instead of cutting your own bangs or moving out of state, reevaluate why you’re considering each choice. Is it something you wanted to do before the divorce or is it a response?
It’s an excellent opportunity to think about what you want for yourself and adjust your goals that would have otherwise included a partner. You’ll also catch any significant changes your kids want to make in their own lives. Talk them through their decisions and do your best to support them while keeping them away from panicked last-minute changes.
6. Reflect on What Didn’t Work
Your stress and restlessness may relate to confusion about why your marriage ended and what happened leading up to your final separation. Processing what didn’t work could provide the peace you’re looking for.
Think about your ex’s character and why they didn’t mesh with your personality or long-term plans for your life. See if there were interpersonal issues that might have improved with the right work. Focus on those areas to make your next relationship or marriage even stronger. Learning why previous love simmered out and enhancing your communication skills are two key ways to resolve lasting pain and move forward.
7. Listen to Music
It’s challenging to chill out when your thoughts never quiet down. While trying new stress-relieving habits like journaling, listen to a calming playlist. The instrumental songs or white noise will turn your room into a relaxing environment, easing your mind out of turbulent thoughts and emotions.
Your kids can also take part in this relaxing habit. Create a playlist with age-appropriate songs to play while hanging out together or when they need quiet time. Music helps children soothe themselves when their world changes for reasons they don’t understand.
8. Take Time Off
It isn’t always easy to submit a time-off request. Many workers feel that it makes them appear replaceable if they don’t have a good enough reason, like a funeral or surgery. The world doesn’t have to end before you can request leave.
Take a Monday or Friday off to get a long, restful weekend. Use the extra time to process your divorce and begin healing without rushing to work or burying your pain for the day. When you don’t have to push through exhaustion or mental fog, you’ll feel stronger because your mind can take it easy.
These are just a few tips to help you chill out when your ex just sucks. No matter what led to your divorce or how long you were together, you’ll find the best way forward for you and your family with these helpful strategies. Try getting a little rest, start stress-reducing habits and talk with a professional to learn from the past and move on together.