Anxiety and Depression are the most common symptoms related to divorce. If you are dealing with anxiety during a divorce, keep reading.
But what if I told you it’s not divorce that causes either of these responses. It us. We cause it.
Divorce is one of those events in life that can cause a lot of self doubt around getting clarity on ‘who am I?’ and ‘what do I do next?’
As humans, we try to figure out a plan to move us forward but then we get trapped in these things called thought loops.
And if you’re not careful, these thought loops can send you down a negative, emotional, spiraling hole of darkness.
Before you know it your dealing with anxiety or depression.
We believe that we can ‘think ‘ our way through anything. We can. But sometimes we get stuck in our habitual thought patterns.
The problem comes in when we are emotionally distraught, we get stuck in thought patterns that lead to anxiety and depression.
As a newly divorce mother several years ago I remember doing this exact thing …trying to think through every possible thing.
Literally, it exhausts your energy levels.
Depleting you of confidence and awareness to create the steps to build your best life.
My thought loops were not a coincidence. It was a habit.
It was a seed that had been planted some time ago.
I nurtured this seed and it grew into a belief.
No matter what, I was always going to find validation for these emotional and negative thoughts.
I was good at that.
I was able to get stuck in this emotional thought loop because I really believed it was true, whatever it was, was really going to happen.
I would beat myself up to figure it out, like to the point of full on stress and anxiety.
And when the overwhelm set in I would be so upset with myself I’d get depressed.
I thought I was being proactive. I thought I was being protective of myself and my children.
I remember tiring myself out mentally, feeling drained and always lacking clarity.
This made me feel lost and like a failure. I had no idea what I wanted or even needed.
I was just circling these same ideas in my head. .
Where you mind goes, energy flows.
Where there is energy there is an outcome. Good or bad, it’s still an outcome.
In my personal example above, I started with a problem (what I believed to be a problem).
I tried to think my way through it, I got stuck in an emotional spiral, which left me with a result of anxiety or depression.
I allowed my mind to go to a certain place that I then put energy in to expanding these types of thoughts.
As with anything you put attention to – it grew, and grew, and grew.
Thought loops are addictive. It is the #1 reason people relate divorce with feeling anxiety and depression.
Because we get stuck replaying the scenarios in our minds of the relationship, what the other person did or didn’t do, how all of this led to all of that, how it made you feel…
Then…voila, you feel like shit. You feel the hurt, pain, anger, sadness all over again.
It always serves us in some way. I used to get two payoffs out of my thought loops.
- Reason to worry.
This is how we validate things we believe or think. Aligning it to past experiences (not always our own experiences)
It wasn’t until years later through my personal development journey that I had realized that either…
…I was voluntarily contributing to every outcome in my life or I was being totally controlled.
It’s one or the other.
I picked contributing. Even if I wasn’t happy with the outcomes I knew I had the power to change them. The latter doesn’t offer that option.
Reason to worry
When you are moving forward from a divorce it seems hard to know the steps to take and see a clear path.
We’re constantly ruminating about what’s going to happen in our lives, based on what’s already happened in our lives.
How will I live alone?
How will I cope with this?
How will I ever be ok?
These are the types of questions I found myself asking and that I hear other divorced moms asking.
Humans like to compare. It’s just how society has trained us.
We look back over our past results and use it as a compass to determine our future results. If something doesn’t match, it must mean it’s not going to be good.
So our brains start coming up with every possible situation that could be bad. This causes worry.
If we are worrying then it sorta gives us a sense that we are at least setting our expectations.
Our hearts are prepared to take the hit when 1 of the 352 scenarios happen that is causing worry.
But for the most part none of the stuff we worry about ever happens.
So how do you stop thought loops?
You can’t control your thoughts, thoughts will come and go. And they will pop in randomly at any moment.
But if you get to a place of observation to notice these thought patterns and reframe your thinking it will help reduce anxiety and depression.
In my empowerment coaching I teach you how to find the source of that thought loop.
Then we develop a plan putting in place go to solutions and tools specifically for you.
Because thoughts will always come up.
Learning the tools to use and making those tools habits will help you level up your life after divorce to effortless confidence.
I want to help each divorced mom realize just how powerful they are. Whatever dream or goal they want for their lives, it’s totally doable.
They are not limited. If anything they have been set free.
Let me know if you liked this article.
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