Thinking about divorce? Here’s the ‘self-talk’ you need to have first

Self-talk, those private conversations you have in your head (or with a therapist, if talking just to yourself doesn’t work) is one of the best methods you can use to clarify your feelings and gain some direction when you’re not sure what to do. It’s particularly important to have some well-considered discussions with yourself when you’re thinking about major life decisions — like divorce.

Here are the things you need to think about when you’re on the fence about divorce:

Is this a bad marriage or just a bad time?

The extraordinary tensions that come from living these days can put everyone on edge. Even good relationships can sometimes fragment under enough stress. If your marriage has been good and there’s no particular reason that things have fallen apart, you may want to wait a little longer before you make a decision. If the downward trajectory has been going on for a while, however, it may be time to proceed.

Are your emotional needs being met?

Does your spouse meet your emotional needs and make you feel empowered? Or, do you find yourself turning to others when you need support? If your “work wife” or “work husband” has replaced your spouse as your confidant and you’d rather look for support through a Facebook group than your spouse, the odds are good that you’ve already mentally checked out of your marriage.

Do your core values match your spouse’s?

You’ve probably heard about couples who divorced over their differing political views. It probably happens more often than you realize. Sometimes spouses just drift apart along moral, ideological or political lines and become incompatible over time. If you can’t reconcile your beliefs with your spouse’s, it’s probably time to move on.

If you’ve made the difficult decision to seek a divorce, find out more about your options. With the right approach, you may be able to move through more quickly than you think.