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Women, reduce divorce stress with these 5 tips

Divorces are stressful, and there's no real way around it. Emotionally, they're exhausting, and physically there's much to be done before the divorce is able to finalize. You have to collect documents, evidence and negotiate with your spouse, all of which is taxing.

There are ways to reduce stress, though. Here are five things you can do to lower your stress levels as you focus on changing your life.

1. Make the decision, and stick with it

One thing that will make a divorce harder is if you waver on going through with it. Make a decision. Do you want to leave your spouse? If not, consider other options like mediation to work on marital concerns. If you decide to move forward, don't think about the past as you focus on your future. Determine what you need out of your marriage and focus on negotiating the best you can.

2. Join a support group

Sometimes, you need to vent. Consider joining a support group. These individuals, who may or may not know you, listen without judgment. A support group is better than talking to family or friends in some cases, because these individuals have no stake in your future. They'll tell you if or when you're wrong and give you honest advice.

3. Don't stop participating in life

Another thing that helps you reduce your stress levels is focusing on the things you love to do. Do you enjoy going out on the weekends with friends? Don't stop now. Keep up your activities so you can focus on more than just a pending divorce. You'll make time to negotiate or to head to a hearing, but your social life and hobbies matter, too.

4. Declutter

Decluttering helps in times of stress. It also helps you find documents you need for your divorce. Go through your accounts, junk drawers and file folders, so you locate any and all documentation that might be of use during your divorce. Declutter your computer files, and look for anything that includes financial information that you can give your attorney.

5. Focus on the future

Finally, when things seem too stressful, stop and think about the future you're building for yourself. You want out of this situation for a reason, and there are things you want to do in the future. Focusing on the past may feel hurtful and straining, so consider what you want in times ahead. Thinking about changes in a positive way helps reduce divorce stress overall.

Divorce causes strain and stress, but your attorney can help make sure you get what you need out of the marriage. Whether you're in a situation with many or few assets, the right negotiating tactics can help.