Countless self-help experts and counselors will advise divorcing spouses to harness the seemingly magical powers of optimism. Sticking to themes like “happiness” and “success” can make the divorce process easier, and help the man or woman emerge on the other side with the energy needed to take on a new life, according to these experts.
However, not all pundits on such matters would agree. One family lawyer recently penned a blog that called into question how construction positive thinking during a divorce truly is. She also pointed out that, in some scenarios, positive thinking could even inhibit a person from truly grieving.
Sometimes, a man or woman simply needs to feel what they are feeling in order to get past it. There is not always a lot of sense in pushing those natural feelings aside and forcing themselves to think positively, even though our culture dictates it.
The family lawyer’s words were deeply rooted in work by a British journalist, who was the brains behind the book “The Antidote: Happiness for People Who Can’t Stand Positive Thinking.”
Some of the sentiments the author hit on in his unique work are as follows:
Even when a person is able to vent about their anger, it does not take that anger away from the individual.
When a man or woman constantly reaffirms themselves, it can actually lead them to suffer from low self-esteem and feel less lovable.
Those who are grieving, but make efforts to avoid their feelings, extend the process.
Self-help books that preach the powers of positive thinking are not generally rooted in scientific research
While this certainly does not mean that a divorcing husband or wife needs to feel miserable to get through the process, men and women must be cautious on treating positive thinking as the cure-all for negative emotions.
Source: Huffington Post, “From Oprah to Chopra: Is All This Positive Thinking Really Making Us Feel Better?” Alison Patton, Jan. 14, 2013