Even while mediation rests in the present, it is with a consciousness of intention towards the future. When people are encountering painful emotions and endeavoring to overcome overwhelming challenges, goals are invaluable. A focus on what is wanted can organize the present and lift people through distressing periods. When the present is trying, focusing on objectives can help reshape it into something more tolerable and bring about what’s wanted sooner.
In mediation, we work with clients to clarify what they want after the divorce is over. What do they want their children to say about the divorce? About how each parent handled it? What sort of parent-child relationship has been solidified? How are pick-ups and drop-offs? How is attending the children’s events simultaneously? How do you feel when your former spouse calls? How do you feel about yourself and how you managed this time? Did you gain self-respect or erode it? By keeping the end in mind, we consider the effects of our decisions differently, often from our more developed, balanced selves.
Divorce can bring out the worst in the best people. When we fear our security is threatened, we naturally resort to our most regressed and limited selves. It is how we are wired. When we are helped to settle and resource into what we want to create in the near future, we can begin to access more of our refined, complex selves — the parts we need in order to make the decisions that will serve us long term.
By helping clients to think through their short and long terms goals and the effects of their current choices and behaviors on their future, we engender better outcomes reached by more thoughtful, engaged participants.