For a lot of people, the decision to get a divorce hardly brings misery. Many are in unhappy marriages despite their best efforts, and deciding to divorce can bring a sigh of relief — it puts things on track to start changing.

Others aren’t so happy to learn that their spouse wants to dissolve the marriage. Sometimes, the decision comes as a surprise, and one spouse wants to try to save the marriage. The unwanted divorce may very well still happen, of course.

If you’ve found yourself going through a divorce you don’t really want, though, you can still use the opportunity to change your life for the better. Or, as one commentator recently observed, you can fall apart, feel like a failure, and drive your friends away with endless talk about how your ex wronged you.

You can swagger into your post-divorce life

1. Put your emotional wellbeing high on the list. It can be a challenge to get tough, especially when you’re wounded. What you can do is be kind, gracious and responsible — and pay attention. A lot of people will foist their advice and opinions on you during a divorce, which can be disempowering or even hurtful. Notice who does that and distance yourself from them.  

2. Don’t get lazy with your appearance. You’ve heard the old saw that “the best revenge is living well,” right? Well, put your best face forward, every day, even though it’s hard.

3. Consider getting a better job. Seriously — now’s the time. Moving from a single household to two separate ones can be expensive, and you may need more money. More important, a better job will bring stress, but also a real sense that you’re in charge.

4. Don’t be pushed into — or out of — dating. The time to start dating is when you’re ready. Keep in mind that dating during the divorce process could have legal consequences, but otherwise, there’s no right or wrong time.

5. Shrug off some of that worry. The divorce process requires you to solve problems and act in the best interest of your kids, if any. That doesn’t mean you have to solve all of your kids’ problems from here on out. It doesn’t mean you have to solve all of your problems immediately. Take a step or two in the right direction, and then take a deep breath.

Source: HuffPost Divorce, “5 Rules For Getting Through Divorce With Your Sanity Intact,” Meerabelle Dey, March 19, 2015