21 Ways to Boost Your Confidence After Divorce

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?

Yeah.

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.

11) Surround yourself with positive (and real) people – It’s okay to cut people out of your life that don’t help to build you up in a real and meaningful way. Avoid negativity and false praise.

12) Play – Ride roller coasters. Go sledding. Visit a trampoline park. When you are immersed in play, you stop the over-thinking that drains your confidence.

13) Exercise – The benefits of exercise are twofold – you feel better and you look better. Choose an exercise that meets your physical and emotional needs.

14) Try something you’ve never done before – I love Meetup.com for this; it’s an easy way to get out and do something new. When you’re a novice, you approach the activity with no expectations. It’s exhilarating and, once you’re done, you feel on top of the world.

15) Go outside – Breathe the fresh air. Move. Take the time to see and smell what is around you. Nature has a way of reminding us what is really important.

16) Focus on something you know you do well – Throw yourself into work for awhile. Or immerse yourself in a favorite hobby. If you’re good at something, do it and know you do it well.

17) Spend time with a pet – Sometimes we just need a furry friend to remind us that we’re all that and a bag of chips.

18) Get a massage – Massage is a wonderful and non-sexual way for you to reconnect with your body. It feels so amazing to feel that touch tension release with none of the worries that sexual contact may now hold.

19) Create a challenge for yourself. And then meet it – It can be anything – from learning to sing a song in German to completing 5 pull-ups. Confidence comes from facing and completing authentic challenges. Don’t wait for them to come to you.

20) Take the time to address your appearance even when you don’t feel like it – I didn’t brush my hair for a month. And I felt like crap. Wonder why? Once I took the time to brush my hair and apply some eyeliner, I felt better and people smiled at me more (which also made me feel better).

21) Act “as if” – Sometimes you have to fake confidence until you make it. Practice making your voice strong even when your knees tremble. Rehearse your swagger. No one else will know it’s only for show.

You’re awesome:)

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17 thoughts on “21 Ways to Boost Your Confidence After Divorce

  1. Amen!! I Love this and totally agree with you. Divorce is not easy, especially if you are the “innocent” part of the equation! This is great advice…And number 7– can eventually lead to your own book to share with others. I never thought my struggles would one day be read by others.

  2. I think everything listed is an excellent way to take your mind off being divorced, but what happened to understanding that you are divorced? Talking to people that have gone through divorces, interacting with people that are single and looking to get back on track, strengthen your grasp on what went wrong in your relationship and how could you grow in your next one? All the things you recommend will build character but I believe the greatest thing in life is spending years leading to death with someone whom took care of your heart before it stops. So though this list is great, i would recommend finding yourself again so you can give yourself again. Go after Love again because you deserve a happy ending!!!!

    1. All very important (and ideas I’ve written extensively about). Getting into what happened, understanding your role and being able to love again certainly build confidence. It just takes time (often years). This post is intended to give people ideas on how they can boost their confidence even while the healing and rebuilding is going on. Thanks!

    2. You’re so right but its close to impossible. Divorced for 7 but no one seem to be interested in me. Why?
      But the advice should uplift me.

  3. Swagger?–OMG! And 5 pull-ups? or maybe you don’t mean all at once…. I guess it doesn’t always take divorce to make one feel as you have described, but I’m sure divorce is a biggie! You are a good therapist, StillLearning2!

  4. Lisa, I love your insight! You have learned alot from your trials and I love that you are so willing to share your knowledge with others, thanks!

    I’m sorry but I need to jump in here with 1 of your suggestions. While flirting can boost your confidence, please be respectful of married men and women and keep the interaction respectful. I am shocked at the way some women act with my husband…even when I am around. It’s nice to have fun with the opposite sex but please be mindful when they are married or in a serious relationship. Your fun should not be at the expense of anyone else…and for those of us that have been cheated on, we deserve some respect. There’s having fun and crossing lines when it comes to flirting. (Sorry, I can be a little uptight at times, but I get tired of some people not knowing what boundaries are, and not so innocent flirting can lead to so much more.) So have fun, but please be respectful! 😉

      1. Flirting is fine, but if I had it to do over again, I’d be more careful. I had no idea how vulnerable I was, even after the divorce was final. My self-esteem was so low, I got stuck in a very unhealthy relationship. It only lasted a year, but it was a year too long. I wish I’d spent more time clarifying my boundaries, but hey, I learned to have more compassion for people who get stuck in unhealthy relationships.

  5. Wonderful advice! Last week was my first anniversary of ‘alone’, I didn’t realize it was bothering me, really bothering me until I sat with a friend yesterday who pointed out I had been withdrawn all week. I needed to really think about my reactions, my ‘celebration’ of this anniversary.

  6. Excellent Post! Very positive! I did most of these in recovering from my divorce arouned 2001, and they all helped. One other thing I did was to make a collage of the constants in my life, the things that gave me strength and were always there for me. I’ll be blogging about collages soon. For now, I’d like to re-blog this on “Loving Me, Too.” Thanks!

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