If you’ve been the stay-at-home parent during the marriage, a huge challenge will be to figure out what you will do after the divorce. You’ve been out of the workforce for years, you feel trapped at home, and you don’t want to just work at McDonald’s.
What can you do?
1. Realize you’re not alone. Many people getting divorced have to drastically rethink their lives. Seek out family and friends who have been in your shoes, and listen to their advice. If you feel alone, connect with a divorce support group. Every community will have people who have been exactly where you have been, these people are great resources for you, to help you find your path.
2. Dream again! Dust off the cob webs, and start thinking about who you are and where you fit into the world. Are you a talented communicator? Maybe you should consider a career in sales. Are you a master gardner? Perhaps there is a future for you at a nursery. We all have talents and aspirations, take stock of yours and consider what you have to offer the world.
3. Turn to your network. Think about what kinds of career opportunities you are interested in, and who you know. Oftentimes, family and friends have connections to job leads that might be of interest to you. If you feel like you do not have such a “network,” start building one! Be proactive, and figure out what groups exist in your community that feel like they would offer you an opportunity to get to know people.
4. Meet with a career counselor. Sometimes, it is helpful to have an expert walk you through your talents and what career opportunities may offer a solid fit. Career counselors help people just like you every day, and will help you brainstorm and understand what the job market is like.
5. Be willing to take risks. Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there. You can’t accept that dream job if you don’t apply! You are worth all the effort, and have much to offer, you just need to find the right employer so that you can shine.
Divorce brings many changes, all at once. One real positive change in a divorce is the opportunity to transition to a career that will help you blossom professionally. Take advantage of the opportunity to rethink what you are about and who you want to be!