4 Ways to Protect Your Mental and Physical Health during Divorce

Divorce isn't easy. The emotional toll that your breakup takes can sometimes trigger mental and physical health issues during your divorce journey. We get it. But what if you could proactively increase wellness by just making a few shifts to your day-to-day life? You can. Below are a few of the mental and physical considerations to keep in mind as you venture into this new chapter of your life.

Keeping your screen time in check

I know, total buzzkill. But sometimes we forget just how much excessive screen time can negatively impact your health. Whether you are distracting yourself with a new TV show, more social media usage, or immersing yourself in work, blue-light rays can have really adverse effects on our eyes. On top of causing eye fatigue and headaches, this type of light impacts your body's natural melatonin creation and can disrupt your sleep schedule. And we all know how important sleep is these days!

One way to deal with this problem is to set limits on how much time you want to spend on your digital devices each day to hold yourself accountable and focus on more productive and mindful activities. There are specific apps designed to help reduce screen time and special glasses made for blocking blue-light for the times you can't avoid it.

Exploring your eating habits

Stress makes us eat. Or makes us not eat. Either way, it affects everything from how much we eat to what we eat and how our body processes the food we devour. The first step to getting this right is simply noticing what we do and why. Per recommendations given by the CDC, start by reflecting on your current eating to identify any noticeable habits or triggers.

By focusing on mindfulness when considering your diet, you can begin to give your body the fuel it needs. Not only will you physically feel better, but you will feel mentally stronger as well. Remember that this does not have to happen all at once – start small by eliminating one bad eating habit and start setting goals to incorporate certain nutrients in your meals.

Being kind to yourself

Your mental health is just as important throughout your divorce journey as your physical health is. Nevertheless, many people find themselves turning to a damaging habit of negative self-talk. This type of coping can have toxic effects – like feelings of depression, perfectionism, and limited thinking. While it can be easy to fall into this pattern following a divorce, it is extremely beneficial to stray away from this mindset. Instead, surround yourself with people, places, and things that motivate and support you to become the best version of yourself. Similarly, enlisting the help of divorce experts can help ease the stress of the legal process and give you back more time to focus on yourself.

Related: Designing a Self-Care Routine That Actually Works

Exercise goes a long way

Separation can leave you feeling unmotivated, and unfortunately, this can often lead to not getting an adequate amount of exercise. From working through legal agreements to figuring out what your new life might look like, it is understandable that a consistent workout routine may not be at the forefront of your mind.

While it is easy to push off, remember the mental benefits of exercise. Doing something as simple as going for a walk while you're on the phone with a friend or stretching before you go to bed can help ward off depression, anxiety, and stress. There are so many different ways to stay active, so finding what works for you can be an exciting first step in this opportunity to have a fresh start.

Your health, both physically and mentally, is important to prioritize during your divorce journey. Given the challenges that may arise, focusing to take control of your situation and set tangible goals for yourself will help you feel more confident and strong. Just remember, when in doubt, remember this principle: Everything in moderation. You got this.


Head of Content
Communication, Relationships, Personal Growth, Mental Health
As Hello Divorce's Head of Content, Katie is dedicated to breaking down the stress and mess of divorce into clear, helpful content that delivers hope rather than fear. Katie most often writes about the emotional toll of divorce, self-care and mindfulness, and effective communication. Katie has 20+ years of experience in content development and management, specializing in compelling consumer-facing content that helps people live better lives. She has a Master's in Media Studies from the University of Wisconsin. Katie lives in Texas with her husband and two adorable cats, and you can find her hiking and bird watching in her free time.