Divorce has a way of making even the most self-assured suddenly become full of uncertainty. It makes us question our worth at the same time we are thrust back into the single world, only this time older, heavier, saggier and balder than before. And if you were traded in by your spouse for a younger, skinnier, smarter or wealthier partner?
Regardless of the nature of the split, your confidence is likely sagging after the end of the marriage. Here are some small and large ways you can rebuild your confidence as you work to rebuild your life:
1) Sign up for something with a finish line – This can be a race. A degree program. Anything that has a line to cross and a process to get there. I promise you’ll be smiling when you’ve reached the end.
2) Write and post an achievement list – This is a time to brag on yourself to yourself. Create a list of all that you have accomplished in your life. Post it where you will see it every day. Let it bring perspective that your current situation is only temporary.
3) Invest in an item that makes you feel attractive – I bought one dress that I wore on almost every first date I went on. It made me feel beautiful at a time when nothing else could. Find that one item that makes you feel good and wear the hell out of it. Careful here, notice I said one item. Don’t blow your budget in a quest for confidence.
4) Create a list of goals and track your progress – My goal post lived above my computer for the first year. Every time I felt unsure, I would look to see what I had accomplished and what I still wanted to do. It was motivation and recognition rolled into one.
5) Change your password to an affirmation – In our modern life, we enter passwords all day long. Why not make that password work for you? How would you feel if you typed, “BetterEveryDay” or “IW1llSurv1Ve” several times a day?
6) Flirt and be flirted with – You don’t have to be ready to date to meet someone’s eye and exchange some flirty banter. It feels good to be reaffirmed of your desirability. Go for it.
7) Write the timeline of your divorce and recognize your progress – Often we feel discouraged because we are so focused on the here-and-now that we don’t realize how far we have come. See it. Celebrate your progress.
8) Surround yourself with quotes and pictures that lift you up – Put them on your walls. Your computer. Your phone. Your car. Your jewelry. Let every surface whisper to you.
9) Take a break – Sometimes you just need to step away from it all for a few hours or even a few days. If you can, go on a solo trip. It’s exciting and empowering.
10) Put down the self-help and pick up some fiction – The divorce books have their place, but if you’re needing confidence, trade it in for some great stories about strong protagonists facing and overcoming challenges. The courage is contagious.