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As we continue our alphabet series for Starting Over Single, the “I” words provide a pathway into our new lives.
For the first time in many years – for some of us – the first time in our lives, we are truly independent. While that may seem scary at first, the concept of independence focuses on freedom.
We are now free to pursue the desires of our hearts, our passions based on lifetime dreams.
We can go to bed whenever we feel like it and sleep as long as we need to or want to. Sure, we have to set the alarm to get to work on time, but our sleep patterns are no longer focused on someone else. We may actually sleep better than ever before, because we’re not disturbed by someone snoring, moving or – in some cases – abusing us with forced sex.
We can eat what we want. This is a good time to observe healthy nutrition. Sugary, processed foods are not good for us and will not substitute for a failed marriage. Our tastes no longer need to be determined by someone else nor do we have to observe certain meal times just because we are cooking for someone else.
We can use our own financial independence to buy what we want, save as much as we want and give to whatever charities we want to help. We don’t have to ask anyone’s permission for how we spend our hard-earned money. We are not at the mercy of another person’s spending habits, so we can use our own wisdom and seek financial counsel to make the best decisions.
Once the divorce house is sold, we can live where we want – whether than means saving for another house, finding an apartment that serves us well or starting out in an entirely new direction.
If children are involved, then we DO have to observe the custody arrangement, but otherwise – we can make our own decisions about what type of housing we can afford and what we want that to look like.
That also means we can decorate for our own tastes – the colors we like, the style we like, the type of furniture we want to invest in. Nothing is off limits now.
We can move forward to start a new career, go back to school, try a new hobby, sing and dance, et cetera.
This is the time to celebrate our freedom and enjoy life, move into a new area of independence and leap forward with joy.
The tagline for this blog is : “Taking Steps Forward to Live Intentionally.”
We are much more intentional about life now, because we know how fragile security is. We don’t want to waste time on anything that doesn’t really count.
This is the time to re-examine our core values. My coaching clients regularly go through the Core Values Assessment so we can determine the focus for our plan.
This is the time for you to dust off your passion and be intentional about what you plan to do.
Are you going to write that novel that’s been on your mind for years? Are you going to return to school and work on your graduate degree? Are you going to approach your boss about a promotion?
Being intentional means we know the direction we need to take and we take the steps necessary to get there.
It’s an exciting time. Intentionality breeds hope and gives us a purpose for every day. Anything that is outside our core values or doesn’t feed our passions is out of bounds – a waste of energy and resources.
We pay close attention to our growth and move forward with a new-found courage and joy.
As we become more intentional about life, we will begin to form our new identity.
Starting Over Single is our new normal. We are no longer wives or tied to a destructive relationship. We can now become our true selves.
Some of us have been numbed through the years and we’ve forgotten who we are. But God has never forgotten and still has a good plan for our lives.
This is the time to get back on track, embrace who we really are and learn to love ourselves again.
The world will try to shame us. Some of us may hate marking the “Divorced” checkbox as a status on forms.
But instead of focusing on the “D” word, think more about the freedom you now have to be your true self and to pursue your dreams.
In her book, “Rising Strong,” Dr. Brene Brown writes, “We are the authors of our lives. We write our own daring endings.”
Sure…God has a plan for our lives, but it is a GOOD plan and he is present to help us find our way.
But OUR role is to accept that plan, love God and ourselves and take the next steps. As we grow in our true identity, we’ll discover the women God made us to be. Maybe we were sidetracked for a while in a destructive relationship, but now … we’re moving forward.
Embrace your true identity, live intentionally and find joy in your new independence.
©2016 Starting Over Single