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Divorce IS a Hero’s Journey

You have just come to an agreement on how to settle your divorce. You may be still reeling from the entire ordeal. You’ve had to make some major life decisions that affect you and your family. This can be exhausting and also feel like you’ve been engulfed in a dark night of the soul.

Even now, it’s hard to make sense of what’s going on, what is to come, and how you will survive it all. There are so many questions – most of them based on uncertainty and a fear of the unknown. “What’s going to happen to our family?” “Will my kids be OK?” “Will I be able to find a job that will adequately support me?” “How do I pick up the pieces and start my life over after it has been blown apart?” 

These are all masking the deeper questions that come up when you’re quiet enough to hear them: “Who am I and what do I want?” “Will I ever feel safe to love again?” “Am I lovable?”

You are in a process of rebuilding your life after experiencing loss on many levels. You may be asking for advice from your family, your friends, anyone who will listen. However, as well-meaning as they are, you get the sense that they can’t really help you with what’s next. 

What is it that you don’t want?

You don’t want to be in pain forever. You don’t want to be emotionally, financially, and socially crippled by this divorce. You don’t want to feel humiliated, sad, bitter, and angry any more. You don’t want to feel like a failure. You don’t want to lose your relationship with your kids and your family. You don’t want to go into your next relationship full of hope, but ultimately ending up here, again. 

What DO you want right now?

You want to wake up on the other side of this divorce, feeling free, happy, and ready to live into your life’s next chapter. You probably have NO IDEA how to get there from where you are.

How will you get to what you want?

You need a roadmap to take you from where you are now to where you want to go. A map to help you consciously create the future that you deserve and your family needs.

You’re on a Hero’s Journey. 

Joseph Campbell was an educator and authority on the study of myths. His work was brought to the spotlight in a series of interviews with Bill Moyers called The Power of Myth. In this series, they discussed and explored the classic hero cycle, including heroic patterns in literature, film, and global mythology.

 

Joseph Campbell wrote The Hero With a Thousand Faces in 1949. It’s a book on comparative mythology where he outlines the Hero’s Journey, a universal story of adventure and transformation. It’s called the Monomyth because it’s one story that can be found through many cultures in the world.

 

He took all the world’s mythologies and laid them side by side. He realized there was a common thread in all of them, whether it was a myth from the Vikings 3,000 years ago or from a Native American mythology of 500 years ago, they all had these basic components which he named, The Hero’s Journey. 

 

Many of the great stories that we are enthralled by have at their core the tale of the hero’s journey. The Lord of the Rings, Star Wars, the Matrix - these are all epic stories that we grew up on.

The Hero’s Journey is the path that heroes take as part of their development from immaturity and potential to the embodiment of mastery and freedom. It’s a transformational process.

Because of this divorce, you are on your own Hero’s journey, your own process of transformation. 

These are the important milestones of your Hero’s Journey of Divorce:

The End of Normal: You’ve decided to divorce - or your spouse has and you’ve been notified

The Call to Adventure: Considering how to dismantle your marriage in the best possible way

Supernatural Aid: Assembling your team of professional helpers – lawyer, financial planner, real estate agent, coach, therapist, etc.

The Belly of the Whale: Feeling the uncertainty of it all, being swallowed by the process

The Road of Trials/Ordeal: Going through the legal process of divorce

Meeting the Goddess: Seeking inspiration and guidance for completing the journey

The Abyss/Death & Rebirth/The Atonement: Dark night of the soul/facing harsh truths and taking responsibility for your part in the death of your marriage

Transformation/Apotheosis: Acceptance, letting go, forgiveness

The Boon: Experiencing Self-Love 

Master of Two Worlds: Moving on

Freedom to Live: Integration of your divorce into your life and seeing it as a blessing

Where are you on this path? If you are just now completing your divorce, you’re probably at the stage where you are about to enter the cave you fear to enter (the Abyss).

How Will You Get There from Here?

Now that you have the roadmap, you need a vehicle to take you to your destination. Coaching is an excellent vehicle to help you get there. A coach serves as your guide to help you clarify the vision that aligns with your dreams for the future, strategize how to take action to bring the dream into manifestation, and support you along the way. You need a guide to help you realize that you are the hero of your story, not a helpless victim.

Practically speaking, some common areas of exploration with your coach are:

  • Where do I want to live?
  • What work do I want to be doing?
  • Will I have enough money and other resources to support myself? (and what to do if the answer is “no.”)
  • How will I co-parent with my ex in a way that supports our children?
  • When will I be ready to open my heart to a new relationship?

We also look at the deeper, spiritual questions that come up after a big life transition, such as,  “What is my purpose and why am I here?”

This is a time of creation, of clearing out the limitations of the past (judgments, blame, self-victimization), realizing who you truly are and who you need to be to create the life you want for yourself and your family.

And, we all know people who remain victims of their story and get lost along the way. That doesn’t have to be you.

Your divorce CAN be a transformational opportunity, if you are committed to using the experience consciously . It is a hero’s journey and my money is on the people who are smart enough to hire a guide to get them safely to their destination.

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