It is not uncommon for you to experience depression and feelings of sadness during divorce,…
Are you the type of person who typically keeps a calendar for appointments or journals often? If so, this habit will serve you well if you find yourself facing a divorce or separation. And if not, well, you may want to consider taking up these new habits!
What You Should Put in a Divorce Calendar
When you are going through a separation, you will be thinking about and doing many things. Using a calendar to keep things straight will be a huge asset to you, saving you time and stress.
Things you may be thinking about and doing during your divorce:
1. You will have many more appointments than usual
You will have attorneys or other professionals (counselors, accountants, etc.) to meet with. Not to mention if you are in litigation, you have court dates, deadlines, and other items you have to keep track of. Deadlines are extremely important to your case, and you need to coordinate with your attorney to comply with those deadlines to allow them to do the best possible job for you.
2. Your kids appointments AND custody schedules
If you have kids, now you have to keep up with their appointments AND a custody schedule. Not only the custody schedule going forward, but any changes made or issues that may have arisen. Some examples: if the other party was late or cancelled their time with the children, if the children make a concerning comment about their custodial time, if the other parent did not come to an event for the children or failed to pick them up from school, etc.
You may think you can keep up with all these things and remember the details, but separation is very emotional and it will affect your ability to remember details. Make it easy and write it down in your divorce calendar. You don’t want to be that parent missing an important event or forget to pick your kid up at their piano lesson during a contested custody case.
3. Do you know what your expenses are to maintain your lifestyle?
What money do you need to live, or what money can you pay in spousal support? Do you have a budget or are fully aware of your expenses? Write down what you spend every day (using cash, card, whatever) over the course of a few weeks.
This can be helpful in reminding you of expenses you should account for when proposing an amount of spousal support to be paid to you or to show what your typical expenses are with regard to your having the ability to pay spousal support to the other spouse.
4. You are going to be stressed out. Keep a “worry list.”
If you are the kind of person who has a tendency to be anxious or ruminate over issues, keep a few pages in the back of your divorce calendar to write down what is bothering you on your “worry list.” It may help minimize some of your anxiety/rumination and you can consider later what it is that you are worried about to see if there is a possible solution to it, or you can speak with your counselor about it if you are under the care of one.
5. Journaling in general.
You will want to yell “serenity now” like Frank Costanza from Seinfeld. Journaling in general can help you with those moments.
Sometimes you want to yell and scream – this divorce is unfair, why is this happening to me? We can’t always yell that out loud, especially if you are at work or with your children, but you can write those things down. Write your frustrations as big and as bold as you want! You can even draw or doodle if that makes you feel better.
Use What Works Best for YOU!
I have convinced you, right? Now the next question - Electronic or Paper? That is really up to you.
Some people do better with using programs on their smart phones because they have them there always. Personally, when I write things on paper I remember better, so I have a paper journal to keep notes but use my phone calendar for appointments.
If you use paper, get a calendar or journal you will enjoy using. For example, I have a peanuts page a day calendar for my journal and to-do lists. I also suggest getting a great pen. Pink sparkly ink pen? Yes! If you like it, do it. This is where little details like this will make you feel like you are treating yourself.
Don’t forget to keep your divorce calendar in a safe place. You don’t want your kids to read about your feelings related to the other spouse, etc. It should be private.
Going through a separation is a good time to channel your inner writer/organizer to keep good notes about your case and utilize writing as therapy for you on an emotional level. When you are getting ready for trial and have your trusty journal with detailed notes about scheduling, expenses and other details important to the case to easily refer to – you will thank me!
Speak with an Experienced Divorce Lawyer for Support
Your divorce is going to be difficult, and the best way to avoid unnecessarily difficult situations is to work with an experienced divorce attorney in Raleigh. We are available for a consultation by calling 919-301-8843 or completing the contact form below.