Divorcing. We do it everyday! We are all “divorcing” or separating daily or saying no to business deals gone bad, jobs that don’t fit, friends we no longer align with, events and tasks we cannot take on due to time or interest. All of these rejections are essentially mini divorces from what was, or what does not fit in our lives. Divorce is the ultimate no. It cancels out a relationship, negates a family unit as it existed, and rips and ripples through our hearts and bank accounts. Yet, divorce is a decision to let go in order to welcome in what may better define us today, in real time.
Saying no and understanding its power in no way minimizes the impact of divorce. It does however help us to understand and acknowledge that we each have the ability to say no. In fact, we say no throughout our lives, over and over again. When faced with the realities and finalities of ending our marriages, this knowledge that we have previously “divorced” people, places, and things before can be empowering. In theory, we have erased the white board of life before, we can do it again, even if the stakes are higher, even if our emotions are raging, and even if our hearts hurt.
At its core, divorce is less about giving up and more about giving back. Until we divorce whatever is holding us back in life, whether a spouse, a job, a friendship, a fear, we cannot move ahead to better define and explore what works for us. So, if we were holding on to hold on, what would happen if we gave ourselves permission to let go? When we say yes to a toxic relationship or a home life that has run its course, what we are actually saying no to is ourselves. This no to self forms a gap between what we most want and what we currently have. When we live in that gap, we lose clarity, self-worth and sense of purpose. In a word, we lose our own truth.
The power of saying no transcends into all areas of our lives. It has an energy all its own. When we separate from what does not work in our lives and we say no for the right reasons, we generate a renewed capacity to ignite potential and possibility honoring most authentically who we are. We often forget amidst the messiness of the divorce process that beyond the pain and reorganization of our lives sits renewal. A life refresh that is less about what we have given up and “lost” and more about what we have learned and “gained.” Divorce is the no that impacts our hearts, but it is also the no that teaches us about adversity, change, shifting priorities, survival, and courage.
Often, faced with the realities of divorce we swear off new relationships and commitments. What we need to remember is that no in any area of our lives is a hard stop meaning not now. It does not mean not ever. Remaining open to yes is what makes no impactful. Saying no in life makes saying yes that much more special. Divorce is not something that “happened to you” but something that happened. Divorce defined the moment; it did not define you or your future.
So, What’s next? What is the story that you most want to tell about your separation and divorce? How will the echo of this moment define your legacy? How can the power of no propel you forward into a post-divorce pivot rich in purpose?
Action Tip: You are divorcing a relationship with someone else, yet you are not divorcing yourself. In fact, this is the very best time to give yourself permission to lean into your own reinvention. Just add AND. The next time you are overwhelmed and feeling like you need support, list 3 statements about your life today (stay as upbeat as possible) and add the word AND at the end. Then finish the statement. What can you do? Where can saying no create the most impactful yes now?
Randi Levin CPC, founder & CEO, Randi Levin Coaching – is a nationally recognized transitional life strategist, Fortune 500 keynote, author, and reinvention expert. Randi supports women in becoming legends in their own lives! She works with emerging entrepreneurs and women in transition to redefine their legacy so that they can move from wanting success to living successfully. Randi is a legacy catalyst employing the power of today to curate, design, and drive choice and limitless growth. She is a relatable resource and an action-oriented coach building upon her 15 years in Corporate America, her tenure as a stay-at-home super mom, and her successful reinvent and pivot as an entrepreneur and sought-after life strategist. Randi Levin Coaching is widely quoted and featured in top media outlets and she is regularly a featured guest expert on podcasts, radio, and women’s panels. You may have seen her quoted or as a contributor in Thrive Global, HuffPost, Reader’s Digest, Business Insider, American Express OPEN Forum, Working Mother Magazine, Better After 50, or Covey Club. Her workshops have been featured in The Wall Street Journal and Randi is the creator of The Personal Success Accelerator System and a contributing author in the anthology series Get RESULTS!