Is it possible to have a "happy" divorce? Here are some tips

HOW TO HAVE A HAPPY DIVORCE: A little help with dealing with your divorce
Originally published December 7, 2008 as How to have a happy divorce
The first step to a happy divorce is to take responsibility for your role in the failure of the marriage.  That would be my threshold advice to someone in this situation. It is important to remember that relationships take two people and no one person is all wrong and no one person is all right. Take responsibility for your part of it. After that, accept that the marriage didn’t work, and vow to move on with your life. Refuse, as Jen Aniston said, to be “defined” by the failed marriage, and vow to never allow yourself (if you ever did) to be defined by any other relationship going forward. I think that is good advice.
You have to decide to be happy, whether you are married, single or divorced.  That may mean, at least initially, doing a whole lot of soul searching. Who are you? What do you like to do? How would you describe your best life? Where would you like to be or to go? Why are you on the planet? What is your purpose? Is your life purposeful? Is your life feeling full? Or empty? If your life is feeling empty, what responsibilities and duties do you have to fulfill in order to fill up your life.
You are your responsibility. Your happiness is your job – nobody elses. What will it take for you to feel good about your existence? Do you feel you need somebody else to feel good about your own life? If so, you need to work on yourself. You were born alone and you will die alone, and you have to find a way to love your own company best of all. You have to find peace in alone-ness. It doesn’t mean you will spend the rest of your life alone. But you do need some time after a divorce to heal, and to figure out who you are and what you need out of life to have a rich, happy life. You should take that time. And get any help you need. Divorce is a process and for some people it is a more difficult process than for others. Get help. Seek advice from friends, professionals, and dig deep within to find answers too.
And think about this: Just getting divorced increases the happiness quotient for a lot of people. Not everyone, of course. But many people divorce is a good thing, a release. That is because they may have felt trapped in a marriage for so many years and now they feel free. They feel released. Other people feel the opposite. They feel a sense of loss. This is okay. It is okay to mourn the failed relationship to a certain point – if that will stand in your way of feeling happy. But beyond a certain point, you have to move on. You have to choose to move on. You have to choose to live.
My advice is get busy. Do things you like, maybe things you’ve always wanted to do but never had time for because you were “married.” Travel, take art classes, start working out, take up a new job or hobby. Do something outside of your comfort zone. Sign up for a singles event. Whatever. Take charge of your life post-divorce and you will feel happier than if you don’t.
And try to remember that the reason you divorced is because the marriage didn’t work. It doesn’t matter who did what. It’s over. Just vow to move on with your life, with your existence. Accept things as they are. Have the courage to know the difference between the things you can change and the things you can’t change.
Find new friends outside your old circle that you had with your ex. Start fresh. Start over. Think of all the possibilities you have and embrace these new possibilities. It’s your life. Choose happiness. Just choose it. And remember, you can find another him in a New York minute – if that is what you want. What do you want?
Finally, if you have children, focus on them more. They are a huge distraction from unpleasant things. They can bring so much joy and laughter into your life and help you forget about unpleasantries like a divorce.
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