Stress can do a pretty big number on your immune system — and that’s bad news if you’re going through a divorce. Studies have shown that the more stressful a divorce ends up being, the more likely it is that the participants will end up sick.
Simply put, the human adrenal system is designed to cope with short bursts of stress — not the kind of daily grind that comes with a long, difficult divorce. That kind of stress gradually triggers problems with your cortisol levels and makes it harder to stay healthy. How do you cope? Here are some suggestions from the experts:
- Eliminate as many unknowns as possible. You can cope better with your situation and your future when you know what to expect. Find out everything you can about the divorce process and your rights as early as possible.
- Be willing to accept life on life’s terms. You may not like what’s happening, but you can’t change it. You need to accept that your life did not take the path you anticipated and start moving forward on the new path.
- Eat right, sleep right and exercise. It may sound trite, but these three things really do contribute greatly to your overall well-being and health, both mentally and physically.
- Know your goals and keep them in mind. If your primary goal is to get out of a bad marriage as quickly as possible, you may be able to take a very different approach to your divorce, for example, than someone who is worried about their financial stability and issues like spousal support and marital assets.
Finally, don’t be afraid to ask for help. Whether it’s your attorney, a parent, your siblings or your friends, find the people you can rely on and let them know what you need.