“They’re going through a divorce.” It has become such a common phrase that we rarely are shocked anymore. Even if you have not been through a divorce, the chances are high that someone you know has. I went through my own divorce 15 years ago—and I wish that I’d had guidance from an unbiased professional to point out the common roadblocks and pitfalls of the process.
While there are many highly skilled and respected divorce professionals, until recently there has not been someone who can weave the business of divorce together, allowing clients to navigate their divorces with dignity while preserving their finances based on what they truly desire for their future.
Divorces are emotionally exhausting, financially draining, and can have long-term impacts on parent/child relationships. Along the way, constant stress can affect one’s well-being and overall health. It’s a lonely and challenging time to make the right decisions regarding legal options, financial choices, self-care and parenting arrangements.
In addition, people going through a divorce may suddenly find themselves with fewer friends, as the friends of divorcing couples often feel stuck in the middle and don’t want to “take sides.” So they disappear, leaving people without a support system just when they need it most. Other times, there are family and friends who have been through their own divorces. Still, situations can vary so much that their attorney or therapist referrals may be irrelevant—or even detrimental—to the person currently experiencing their divorce. Far more often than we wish, some family and friends are unsupportive of the divorce, causing more stress and uncertainty in the divorcing person’s life.
A Certified Divorce Coach offers unbiased and unemotional guidance to clients as they navigate their unique divorce path. Much like a professional business consultant does for growing and evolving businesses, they help clients get organized, gain a command of the facts, develop clarity through self-discovery and goal setting, build confidence, and help them become a credible client who is more easily represented by their attorneys.
The goal of a Certified Divorce Coach is to be a partner to their client and other members of the legal team during the divorce process. People often need a champion and sounding board to support them while making decisions when they are overcome by their emotions, or exhausted from single parenting. Specially trained divorce coaches provide a safe space for clients to express their emotions while redirecting their emotional energy to stay focused forward.
While a client may have an excellent attorney, they are often emotionally overwhelmed by their circumstances. Many times they cannot truly hear their choices—or have the energy to know the best decisions to make based on those choices. In these cases, a Certified Divorced Coach can attend attorney meetings with their clients to help facilitate communication and motivate them to action.
Some clients may be intimidated by attorneys or other professionals, and unsure of what questions to ask to achieve their personal goals. In those situations, a Certified Divorce Coach will meet with the client ahead of time to organize their thoughts and intentions, refocus their energy, and help create a list of questions for meetings with other professionals. Additionally, people going through a divorce often feel overwhelmed and confused, unsure of which professionals will be a good fit for their unique situation. If the client does not have their own group of people working for them already—such as lawyers, therapists, real estate agents or financial planners—a Certified Divorce Coach is a valuable resource for referrals.
Customizable & Client-Centric
Divorce coaches can meet with clients to sort through specific challenges at any stage of the separation or divorce process. On the opposite end of the spectrum, they can have robust relationships with their clients through the entire process, with the coach available for support daily by phone, email and in person. Divorce coaching is a customizable, client-centric process.
As co-pilot of the process, a Certified Divorce Coach facilitates the “business side of divorce” so the client can stay focused forward on the health and well-being of themselves, their families and their finances. PM
Katie VandenBerg is a separation and divorce navigator at Focused Forward. Visit katievandenberg.com or call (309) 840-0881 for more information.