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If you have separated or gone through a divorce this year then you are likely to be looking ahead to 2020 with hope that a new year (and a brand new decade) will bring some much needed positivity and a fresh start.

 

Our specialist Family Lawyers have seen many clients throughout 2019 from a variety of backgrounds and different circumstances, advising them on their next steps following the end of their relationship.

 

Although this can be a distressing time for people, when the end is in sight and a new year is on the horizon, some peace can be found to help clients move forward with their life.

 

Our Family Team share some tips to help embark upon the New Year after a divorce or separation:

 

1) Get your finances in order

 

If you got divorced this year or are still in the process then your finances have likely taken a bit of a hit. After the impact of Christmas and sales shopping too, it is a good idea to re-assess your finances as early as possible in the New Year.

 

Re-budget and consider your new outgoings and incomings following on from your divorce. If you are going from a joint income to a single income household then highlight any areas where you need to cut back or re-jig your finances. Take into account child maintenance, spousal maintenance or any other agreed payments.

 

2) Establish a routine

 

It can be very difficult to adjust after a divorce, especially if you have come out of a long relationship. It is healthy to get yourself into a routine or consider how to use your free time. Joining a gym or taking up a new exercise regime tends to be popular at the start of a new year. Or perhaps there is something else that you could try such as a cookery class, book club, dance class or a social group that you can join.

 

If you have children and are now sharing time with them between you and your ex-partner it is sensible to establish a structured routine with them (particularly if your children are younger). This will also help them adjust and find comfort in knowing what their plans are in-between different houses.

 

3) Re-Connect with your children

 

Divorce can be a difficult time for children, so plan for some special family time or days out together to bring everyone closer in the New Year.

 

Once your separation is complete and the dust has settled it may be a good time to speak to your children, giving them the opportunity to ask questions, raise any concerns they have and provide them with some reassurance.

 

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4) Socialise again

 

When going through difficult times it can be very tempting to avoid social occasions when you aren’t quite feeling yourself. With a fresh calendar on the wall, perhaps reach out to those friends and family members that you haven’t seen for a while with some dates to catch up. It may feel daunting to meet up with friends that have socialised with you as a couple, but it is important not to hide away and socialising could do you the world of good.

 

5) New Year’s Eve Celebrations

 

If you are feeling tearful or lonely at the thought of spending New Year without a partner then it may be best to avoid big celebrations or awkward midnight countdowns surrounded by loved-up couples! If you are making plans, ensure that you are surrounded with people who are looking out for you and understand your situation. Remember that alcohol might not be the best idea if you are feeling low.

 

Consider making new traditions this year. You could forget the big parties and opt for a takeaway and movie marathon at home, contact your single friends, organise a fun evening with your children, go to the cinema and see one of the new releases or even look for some volunteer work. Being recently divorced or separated doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t have fun and celebrate the ending of a difficult year.

 

6) Forgive and Forget?

A brand new year might be a time to start to let go of anger, bitterness and resentment; particularly if you have children together, work together or are in a situation where you are likely to have regular contact with your ex-partner. Regardless of whether you are able to get along, being civil to one another is much better for your mental health and can help eliminate stress; it is also a much healthier example to set for our children.

 

There are bound to be times where you disagree on things, but trying to approach these situations calmly will help achieve a better outcome. If you run into difficulty remember that you could opt for Mediation to resolve matters.

 

7) Opt for a healthy future

 

New Year’s resolutions often include losing weight, getting fitter or kicking unhealthy habits. After going through a stressful time it is more important than ever to start looking after your mind, body and soul. Eating well, sleeping well, exercising and taking time to take care of yourself will help with all aspects of your life and improve your mental health.

 

 

You now have 365 brand new days ahead of you – wishing you a very happy New Year and we hope that 2020 can close a difficult chapter of your life.

 

If you are going through a separation or need legal advice following on from a relationship breakdown then please get in touch with our Specialist Family Lawyers today. Call us on 01256 844888 or email enquiries@lambbrooks.com. Alternatively if our offices are closed and you need some support, please speak to our online chat team who will ensure that someone contacts you as soon as they are available.

 

Other Articles you may be interested in reading:

Chritsmas Contact Arrangements: What the Courts Favour

Managing your Separation around Christmas Time

Looking for the Best Divorce Lawyer?

Coping with Christmas After Separation

 

 

The contents of this article are for the purposes of general awareness only. They do not purport to constitute legal or professional advice.  The law may have changed since this article was published.   Readers should not act on the basis of the information included and should take appropriate professional advice upon their own particular circumstances.