Acting with awareness and presence of mind is crucial in divorce and family law cases where there is much at stake. Adopting a mindful approach may also be beneficial in the following ways:
- Mindfulness helps lessen reactivity to negative feelings and emotions, which will help individuals detach from what many often perceive as a traumatic situation and observe it more neutrally so as to be better able to fully participate in the process. For example, it is often not in a client’s best interest to react impulsively to their spouse’s or co-parent’s criticism or verbal attacks. Developing a mindful awareness of what may trigger an impulsive reaction helps people recognize their trigger, detach from the situation, and take the time to consider an appropriate response.
- Mindfulness allows individuals to observe/notice/attend to thoughts, feelings and perceptions. Taking the time to meditate and observe one’s thoughts, feelings and perceptions develops nonjudgmental awareness. Having increased nonjudgmental awareness may help individuals make better parenting and financial decisions.
- Attending to one’s own negative thoughts and perceptions in a nonjudgmental manner also promotes self-compassion and it is important for individuals going through what may be one of their biggest life transitions to take care of themselves.
Anyone and everyone. I do my best to use a mindful approach in every case; so people who want mindful counsel, advice and advocacy should use a mindful approach. Anyone wanting resources for a beneficial technique that may help them through a difficult life transition should explore a mindful approach to their situation.
Setting Intentions – I will work with you on a proven process designed to help you set your intentions and create realistic goals for you during the divorce process. By doing so we will be able to help you understand that you are in control of the process based on how you react and respond to various situations.
Guided Meditation – For many people, meditation can be challenging. That’s why I will recommend to you specific podcasts and CDs that walk you through the entire meditation process. Even if you only devote five minutes every day, meditation will help you achieve a sense of peace and calm during divorce.
Therapeutic Massage – Taking care of your body is paramount during a divorce. Everyone agrees that divorces can be stressful. I encourage my clients to take care of themselves physically as well as mentally, and recommend a regular program of mind-clearing therapeutic massage.
Yoga Classes – Not only will yoga (at the level you require) help you clear your mind, it will increase your strength and flexibility during a time you need to possess both physical and emotional strength.
Journaling – One goal of the mindful approach to divorce is to deal with your unique situation in a positive and productive way. Journaling will not only help you through the process today, it will provide a tremendous archive in the future of the ways in which you proactively managed am extremely challenging process and to show you how far you have come.
Visual Mind Mapping – This exercise can be extremely powerful. I will provide instructions on how best to select photos, images, and words from various sources that best reflect your life – what you want your life to look like later this year, next year, and in the future. We create a virtual collage of every image you collect, and I help you understand your mind map. How and where you place your images has meaning that I can help you interpret.
Books – There are myriad books I have read that I recommend to my clients; books to help you step back and reorganize the priorities you have for the next phase of your life.
Videos and CDs – As you enter the next phase of your life in a positive and productive way, there are a number of CDs and videos I recommend to help and support you through your journey.
Yes, absolutely! A mindful approach can be used in any situation – stressful and contested or relaxing and cooperative. I think people going through a stressful, high-conflict divorce or family law matter may be able to benefit most by having a mindful attorney and by utilizing a mindfulness practice through the process.
Any contemplative practice such as meditation, prayer, yoga, etc. can help people develop mindfulness. Meditation is not the only method. Mindfulness is not connected to any religion and is not a religious practice.