When it comes to making difficult and life-changing decisions, no one wants to feel as if they downgraded. It is important to feel as if you have made a trade-up with your new circumstances. Some people in Virginia do this by adopting a “fake it ‘til you make it” mentality, but it is much better to put in the work and ensure you genuinely did move on to better circumstances.

To do this, you may need to confront some difficult feelings. This may make you feel down for a time, but the end results are well worth tackling problems head-on instead of sweeping them under the rug. Here are a few tips to get you started.

Work on your finances

Divorcing couples need to build financial independence as you may no longer be pooling incomes. This also helps to ensure the transition into divorce life without financial headaches, especially if you are near or at retirement age. According to CNBC, one of the first financial problems you should tackle together is how to fairly divide up the 401(k) assets.

Get to know the real you

It may take some time to find your footing in post-divorce life, but it is not impossible. Take some time to rediscover who you once were before the divorce and before the marriage. However, with years of experience and maturity, do not be surprised if that person is no longer compatible with who you are or want to be now. Discover a new side of yourself. Try new things. But, most importantly, learn to love yourself as you are.

Spend some time alone

After potentially years in the constant company of someone else, being alone may feel strange. This does not mean isolating yourself, but it does mean not rushing to get back into a relationship to fill the gap the divorce may have left behind. Focus instead on social connections. You may even find interest groups made up of men or women who are in a similar position to yourself.

Start again

This final step is not for everyone. Some people are content to live out the rest of their lives on their own, pursuing the passions they were forced to set aside for marriage and family life. For everyone else, once you have formed your own social circles and independent routine, now may be the time to reopen the possibility of a romantic relationship, if this is what you want.

This article shares information on post-divorce life and should not be used as legal advice.