No matter the circumstances, a divorce is always stressful. If measures are not properly taken, the proceedings can trigger powerful emotions and make the entire process more painful than necessary. As a result, many divorcing couples often turn to mediation as it is a more constructive, less expensive, and somewhat gentler approach to legally end a marriage. Whether you were referred to divorce mediation or voluntarily chose this route, these five tips can help make the whole process efficient and productive.
Identify your priorities
For the mediation to succeed, you need to know precisely what you want to get out of the divorce. Decide on your priorities and the aspects you are willing to forego. Consider your spouse’s primary concerns to help you evaluate your own. By knowing your priorities in advance, you and your divorce mediation attorney can efficiently assess your settlement options, making the negotiations more fruitful.
Analyze your current status
Before starting the divorce mediation, make sure you are aware of all your joint assets, including household debts. Create a detailed list and indicate their corresponding values. These assets and financial obligations include stocks, furniture, real estate properties, vehicles, life insurance policies, credit cards, loans, investments, collectibles, bank accounts, annuities, and retirement accounts. Never withhold any relevant information as doing so may lead to serious legal complications and make the divorce mediation unproductively longer.
Know the true function of a mediation
One of the common mistakes of divorcing couples is treating divorce mediation as couple’s therapy. Remember that mediation is an avenue to discuss your future as an individual and is not intended to resolve previous relationship conflicts or address your emotional needs. Focus on reaching an amicable separation and avoid dwelling on the things beyond your control. In addition, it is important that you understand the mediator’s primary purpose. Divorce mediators are present to ensure that the negotiation procedures will run smoothly. They are neutral third parties acting in the best interests of everyone.
Change your mindset
The key to a successful mediation is peaceful collaboration. Come to the mediation with a mindset to compromise and not to win. Regardless of how you feel towards your spouse, your goal should not be to pursue compensation for years of suffering or unfairness. While finding a mutual ground should be your main objective, it is also vital that you don’t settle for the sake of making the proceedings faster.
Set aside your emotions
While anger, sadness, and resentment are understandable emotions to have during this sensitive period, they should not interfere or hinder the divorce mediation from being successful. Do your best to emotionally detach yourself from the entire process so you can work rationally with your spouse. Concentrate on ironing out the legal matters as you have plenty of time to grieve your marriage afterward.
Ending a relationship with someone you deeply cared for is never easy. Follow these tips during your divorce mediation so that you and your spouse can focus your time and energies on starting a new life, separately.