Surviving infidelity is possible. I found these nuggets of wisdom from www.surviving adultery.com:
1. Whatever you focus your mind on becomes real, eventually taking over your awareness. Therefore we make efforts to “change our mind”: from pain over to relaxation; from guilt and blame to self-acceptance and gentleness; from fear of the future to being in the present. Accept yourself – treasure your idiosyncrasies and foibles. Remind yourself of your strengths, gifts and your proven loyalty to yourself over the years, on a daily basis.
2. Simplify: during more stressful and low energy times, keep life simple, attending to say 5 or so activities per day.
3. Keep occupied as much as possible – make a schedule with exercise in it, stay in contact with friends, make new acquaintances/friends, list things you can do. Know that to begin anything is often better than to think. Surviving infidelity sometimes means keeping busy while waiting for something to happen.
4. Now is the only time there is. Don’t spend too much time dwelling on the negatives of the past or the perceived problems in the future. Likely these perceptions regarding the past and the future are false or distorted. Surviving infidelity requires you to come back to the present constantly.
5. Keep one focus, not 4 or 5. Do one activity at a time, and engage in it, enjoy it – rather than becoming anxious re everything you have to do. (Keep lists so you can let go of outstanding things).
6. Make sure of good sleep habits, diet, and exercise.
7. Forgive yourself daily and relax. If unfinished activities pile up, it is not that you are slow, lazy or stupid. You are likely expecting too much at that particular moment. Stick to 2 or 3 priorities – shelve the rest.
8. Make use of thought-stopping. Order negative thoughts to go away or put them aside.
9. Stop once per day and ask yourself “What do I need right now. What can I do for myself today to help me.”
10. Don’t be a victim. Do things for yourself to feel effective and in control. Don’t give in to self-pity.
11. Remember what has worked for you in the past. Likely beneath all the doubts, fears, recriminations, and self-criticism that are swirling around your head, you hear a few faint and muffled words of your own good advice telling you what is good for you. This counsel may be barely audible…but listen carefully to it. You already have everything you need to be happy, including the wisdom you have developed over your life so far.
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Daniel is a Marriage and Family Therapist. He currently sees couples at Couples Therapy Inc. in Boston, Massachusetts, three seasons in Cummington (at the foothills of the Berkshires...) and in Miami during joint retreats with his wife, Dr. Kathy McMahon. He uses EFT, Gottman Method, Solution-focused and the Developmental Model in his approaches.