Today we are going to delve into the art of embracing the high road during divorce and co-parenting. I want you to discover the power of being your best self, fueled by a clear purpose and a vision for the future, and to help you release the weight of minor frustrations. I will share with you a couple of exercises that will guide you to igniting kindness and integrity in your parenting journey.
One of the problems in co-parenting is that it's not always easy to walk the high road. And what does it mean to walk the high road? Well, I think it means to be the best person you can be in the moment. During the situation, during the problem, During the challenge. You know, during the good times. And when I'm working with clients, the they often say to me, well, look, I can't always walk the high road. I'm frustrated. I'm pissed off, I'm angry, I'm upset, I'm sad. And I get it. You can be all those things and you can still choose to walk the high road. What I suggest is, that they go back and remember why they are transitioning through divorce and who they want to be during this time. So that five years from now when they look back on this transition, they can feel proud about who they were being.
I think one of the ways to think about walking the high road is to keep your eye on your WHY and keep your eye on your vision of your future. It can help with all those little difficult, challenging, trying times that come with parenting during divorce. I was speaking with a client recently and she was telling me about how her children’s dad is always bringing the kids back late.
They have a parenting plan. Everything's set, you know, drop off at this time, come back at this time. Everything's all organized. Despite this, he is always bringing the kids back late. They come home and they haven't eaten properly. They are not as clean as she would like. I asked her to think about whether this is important or not. Ask yourself, “Is this REALLY important in the moment?”
It might feel really important and it might be annoying every single time, every single week. But is it really important in the long term? So how do you want yourself and your children to look back on their childhood and you to look back on all of these years with your kids during divorce? How do you want it to look?
Do you want it to be about nit picking and fighting about a few minutes here and there? Or do you want it to be a little more easygoing and the kids can just be kids and have fun and spend time with dad and spend time with you. And if they're home a little bit late now and again, doesn't really matter. Do you want your children to experience this divorce and all of your frustrations in these moments, or do you want to build a peaceful environment for your children to crave coming home to?
It might matter to you, and if it does, and that's something that you really need to stick to, well then how can you have a discussion with Dad to maybe make it work? Maybe, “Hey, if you're going to be late, could you text me and just let me know?” or “Could you, you know, try mostly to be on time?” You know, you can have these little conversations, but if it really doesn't matter, let it go.
Focus on who you want to be during this time and how you want to look back at your kids lives when they were kids. And this divorce transition. Not being able to walk the high road is often because we've forgotten our why and our purpose and our meaning, our reason for getting divorced and our vision of the future that we are journeying into.
And we've forgotten how we need to be, speak, think, act during this time to be able to look back and say, “Great, I did the best that I could do with the tools that I had in my toolbox and I feel very, very proud about that!”
When you have some quiet time, there's a couple of things that that you might want to consider doing in your journal. You can add a note to your phone. You can put a sticky note up on your mirror in your bathroom saying, “Who do I want to be today?” to remind you about this exercise? There are two parts to this exercise.
First, write down in your journal five amazing things about your mate. Now you may have to go way back to remember what's really, really amazing about him or her and the reason you got married and the reason you love them so much. You had kids and you made memories and you built dreams and you still have a relationship in life together because of this family you have built. I want you to write down five things that are really fabulous about this person. It will help with you being able to take the high road If you can focus on what is great about your child's other parent. That's the first thing.
Step two is another thing that is helpful to some of my clients and it’s another thing that is helpful for myself as well is, something that I've done in my own journal. It is creating a personal manifesto. Take a little story about how you see your life right now. You can think about money, your home, your divorce, your work, your parenting plan, your exercise and your health, your friends, your family, your community.
Just a little a little story about how things look right now and then a story and some points about who you want to be in your life. Some of the points to consider are, I want to be a person of dignity and integrity. A mother who is non-judgmental and kind and loving. A person who can forgive without feeling weak. A person without regrets, who can forgive herself for mistakes or feeling fragile and tired. A person who does not fear self-knowledge. Knowing that is it is the way out of pain and on to a better future. A person who sets goals and takes action. A person who is loving. A mother who does not want her children to feel sorry for her. A person who does not want her children to suffer just because she is angry.
These are just some of the things to consider. You can go on and on to see what is most important to you. Do not stop yourself from doing several revisions. Reflect, review, change as you grow. This is a journey of self-discovery, where you learn about yourself, your values, and the person you aspire to become. When faced with challenges or difficult emotions, you can draw upon this self-awareness and act with kindness and wisdom. Over time, this understanding becomes an integral part of who you are as a person.
It takes a little bit practice, but you will grow into this. The sooner you start, the sooner you're going to be that person. If you want to learn more about mindset and mindset, check shift, you can check out this video here. And it's always great talking with you.
And until next time here's to youfirst!