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Ep. 81 – Divorce Audit

In this episode we discuss reinventing yourself after divorce. To do a life audit as to the things that you want to keep in your life, the things to let go of, and the new goals and intentions that you want for the next chapter of your life.


Doreen: Hey, my beautiful friends, and how are you? Hope you’re doing okay. So today we’re gonna talk about reinventing yourself after divorce, what I like to refer to as a divorce audit. So if you are ready. Let’s get started.

Are you ready to create a life that’s better than ever before? We are Doreen Yaffa and Jeff Wilson, and we are here to give you the strategies you need to create the life after divorce that you deserve and desire. As partners both in marriage and coaching, we use our expertise as well as our own personal experiences to help you make the next chapter of your life the best chapter.

Hey, Jeff.

Jeff: Hey, how are you?

Doreen: I’m good. How are you?

Jeff: I’m doing fantastic.

Doreen: Good. What’s new?

Jeff: Let’s see. Well, we got a new puppy. I don’t know if the listeners heard, knew about that.

Doreen: Don’t know.

Jeff: And we’re doing some training and he’s a good boy.

Doreen: He is a good boy. His name is Zen.

Jeff: And then we have a marriage, a wedding to go to.

Doreen: We do have a wedding. My nephew’s getting married today and so

Jeff: Yeah, congratulations to them.

Doreen: All kinds of festivities starting in a few hours and looking forward to seeing the family.

Jeff: Yeah, it’s gonna be fun.

Doreen: It’s interesting how weddings, when you are younger, there’s like so many weddings to go to and then it kind of like phases out and now we’re getting into that stage of our life with our family.

Where the kids are get are in their twenties and my nephew’s in his twenties, my niece is in her twenties, and now we’re starting to have weddings.  So, it’s always nice to have family brought back together on these special family events.

Jeff: I just said uhoh. Our kids are in their twenties too.

Doreen: And how important is it to maintain a good relationship with your ex when you’re going through these type?

Going through shouldn’t say going through, but when you’re enjoying these types of family events,

Jeff: It’s very, it’s very important. And we’ve, we’ve hit on it on a few episodes and we’re gonna continue to do so because it’s so important.

Doreen: Yeah. Because when your kids get married and they, or they have other events like graduations and things in their life, and you can’t even be in the same room with your ex, that’s not good.

That’s not good for anybody. And so we’re gonna talk a little bit today about also using that energy, that negative energy towards reinventing yourself. Again, I like to call it like an audit. You know, sometimes in life you get thrown something that, such as a sickness, you know, a death of someone you love and like a divorce where you kind of stop for a minute and you rethink what am I doing with my life?

Right? Sometimes it takes those aha moments to really revisit your true intentions, your true goals, and what really sparks you. Too bad though, that it takes these events for this to happen. I suggest that everyone should do a life audit on a yearly basis. Yeah. Really just rethinking about your goals and what you want in your life, what’s serving you and what you don’t want and what you do want, and then leaning into that.

Jeff: Yeah. It seems like, you know, I agree with you and I really. . I really like when you, said the, life audit. But I tend to go through things like that when there’s a death on the news or somebody that you kind of grew up with you always think, wow, my life is short. I need to do a, a, an audit and kind of figure out what I’m, where am I going and what’s my direction?

And it’s a shame that, I don’t do that just automatically doing it.

Doreen: Yeah, I think you can schedule them. I think it’s really important to really take the time and rediscover who you are and what you want. Yeah. I was listening to a podcast recently and they were talking about retreats and how important it is to sometimes just get away from it all.

You know, it might be in a formal group retreat, or it could be maybe you just going away to somewhere that you enjoy being like the mountains or the beach for a weekend, just by yourself, without all the electronics, without all the other commitments in your life. And this I think, would be a great opportunity to just be one-on-one with yourself and to rediscover who you are and what you want when you try to do that at home it never really works out because there’s always that thought. You know how you feel so different when you’re on vacation, right? But when you’re home, you know, you’re looking around your house, you’re thinking of all the things you gotta do. You got the laundry that’s looking at you saying, hello, time to wash laundry, or clean this, or do that.

So getting away really puts you in that mind space to do a nice audit.

Jeff: Not to mention the distractions of your daily life. There’s distractions. Then you get into that routine, like you were saying. It’s very, very difficult to step outside of that and take a good look at yourself.

Doreen: So, and when we talk about routine, it’s kind of like living on autopilot, you know, just going through the motions day in and day out, living a life that you kind of fell into without taking that opportunity to really understand what gets you motivated and feeling alive. The reality is though, that we have more control over our life and the possibilities of what we can make that look like for us, for each one of us, because it’s all in our control. It really is, and divorce is a situation of course, where it disrupts your life.

It disrupts your family. But it also is like we’re saying, an awakening. An awakening of what am I doing now? Where am I going with my life and what do I want it to look like? So it’s very normal, I think for people to seek routine. People generally humans, we like routine or we like the known, right?

Jeff: Correct.

Doreen: Having three meals a day, waking up at a certain time, going to sleep at a certain time. Maybe you’re in an exercise program, maybe you look at your emails or you go to work certain hours. I mean, whatever your routine is. People like routines and routines are good because they give you stability, but routines can also be something of a crutch.

Does that make sense?

Jeff: It does.

Doreen: Why?

Jeff: Well,

Doreen: Testing you

Jeff: Uhoh. Well, you don’t have to work hard at planning things. You don’t have to work hard at setting goals. You don’t have to work hard at all. I mean, you’re in this routine where you’re on a kind of autopilot and you’re going through life just as almost like a robot,

Doreen: Right? And so, you know, when we work with our clients in our coaching practice, one of the first things we do is we try to do an audit on where they are and where they wanna be. And for example, let me ask some questions, you know, that I, the listeners might consider. If you had a clean slate and you had to decide things all over again, where would you choose to live?

What city would you be in? What career would you choose and why? What friends would you decide to have in your life or maybe you prefer to let go of? Would you marry the same type of person again? What type of a relationship do you want with a significant other? You know, these are all good questions that an audit kind of brings to the surface.

And it’s important that when you look at the questions in your life and you look at your family, your career, your friends, you know, you can put ’em in categories, like a piece of a pie. You know, each piece resembles the total. Put them into categories, your career, your social life, your personal time, you know your friendships.

What does that look like for you? And what do you wanna embrace? And you’re saying to yourself, Hey, this really works. I really enjoy this, or this isn’t really working for me. I’m doing this because of another person’s desire, or because I’m on autopilot. And so I wanna kind of clean that up a little bit and really embrace what makes me happy.

Jeff: Yeah. Or it could be that you’re enjoying it or you like it but it doesn’t serve your goals and serve what you want, really want in life.

Doreen: So in the long run, right?

Jeff: In the long run, yes.

Doreen: So that honesty with yourself and that conversation that you have with yourself during this audit is really extremely, extremely powerful.

Now, what’s gonna happen when you do this, and you gotta be ready for this. Is that people in your life, from your children, to your family members, to your coworkers, to your, you know, whomever you have in your life, they’re gonna be like, what is going on? Because they don’t want change necessarily either.

And so, it’s important to recognize, I like to say it this way, if you’re going to disappoint someone, because you’re gonna make a change in your life for what you truly want, right? Is it better that you disappoint yourself or that you disappoint another? Yeah. Think about that. I mean, is it selfish to disappoint yourself or unselfish? Think about that because you only have one life, right? And so you, you know, sometimes you’re gonna make choices in your life when you do this audit and you’re going to get resistance from others. And so it’s kind of predictable in that sense. And so knowing your why as to what you want is going to be important when that resistance is coming to you , right? Whatever that looks like.

Jeff: Well there there’s gonna be the resistance just like it. When you first need or first decide to make the change, your mind is gonna talk about resisting it as well.

Doreen: True.

Jeff: So everybody out there is gonna do the same thing cuz we’re all humans. As you know, so you have to make sure that you’re taking care of number one and what’s in your best interest.

Doreen: Yeah, and there’s nothing wrong with that. I think that when you have, when you have yourself in check and you really have your intentions in check, even though there’s gonna be resistance from mothers in your life, eventually you’re gonna be a happier person. You’re going to be a focused person. You’re gonna be a person that’s reaching out for your dreams, and that’s going to trickle down or trickle sideways or up who, however you wanna look at it for the other people in your life. Cuz when you are happier and when you are making yourself a priority, even though originally it might seem a little, disappointing to others, they’re gonna be okay with it eventually.

Jeff: Absolutely.

Doreen: You know, so I wanna also talk about when you set your goals and your attentions, your intentions, knowing that whatever that is, you’re gonna have failures. There isn’t a successful person in any capacity of life, you know, from working out to career to family successes, whatever it is that haven’t tried to reach their goal and encountered failures. Failures are just part of the plan. It’s going to happen. It’s just a matter now of the decision you make when those failures happen. So understanding your why as to the goal that you’re looking to achieve is important when those failures come. Why is that, Jeff?

Jeff: Well, I, well, first of all, I think that the word failure has negative connotations, and maybe we should replace it with figuring out ways that it didn’t work.

Doreen: Right.

Jeff: You know, so you’re one step closer to finding out the way that it does work. , you know,

Doreen: So fail forward,

Jeff: Failing forward, right? So you know that every time you fail, you’re one step closer to success.

Doreen: True.

Jeff: And if you look at it that way I almost look forward to the failures.

Doreen: Right. So I always like to use weight as an example because weight is something that a lot of us can identify with. You know, maybe we’ve all been underweight or overweight at some point in our life, and you get on the scale and you’ve been following your diet.

Whatever your protocol is. You’ve been going to the gym, you can honestly say that you’ve been on spot with regard to, let’s say, the last week of really focusing in and you know that you’ve put the effort in and then you get on the scale and you’re up a half a pound. Right. And iit’s like, what is going on?

Jeff: Yeah. Right. Damn. Scale.

Doreen: Damn scale. Like, then you start taking off different articles of clothing because you’re thinking a half a pound. You know, it’s not possible.

Jeff: Well, that happened to me one time and I thought I was gonna lose some weight and gained a few pounds, but my pants were looser

Doreen: Rght.

Jeff: Oh, and I went, wait a minute. So I, you know, I found out, you know, I had gained muscle and lost fat, which was really the goal. So you gotta be careful that you focus too much on the scale.

Doreen: Well, and the point being that when you look at that scale, you’ve put all the time and effort in, and you’ve gained whatever pound or half a pound that week, are you going to see that one as a failure?

Let me just give up today and go eat everything in the fridge. Forget the, forget the diet, forget going to the gym, or are you gonna say, Hey, Something is, am mist here. Something isn’t working. Maybe I’m not eating enough, maybe I’m not, you know, I’m eating the wrong types of food. Maybe I have a little water weight that day.

Or like you said, maybe the weight is the same or maybe went up, but it’s been proportioned, so reanalyzing it and staying committed to your end goal of losing weight or getting in shape, whatever it looks Is key.

Jeff: And also knowing that min minute, I mean, smallest changes can make the huge differences and make the success come a lot faster in the long run.

In other words, if you’re heading towards somewhere on the boat. And you just take, take a slight change, of course you’re gonna end up in a completely different country. So you have to make sure that when you’re focusing on a goal, that it’s not drastic changes because you didn’t accomplish what you wanted to. It’s minor. Tiny changes that make the huge differences.

Doreen: I always like to say start with a goal in mind and then work backwards, right? So whatever you, when you do your divorce, audit, whatever your goal is, most of us know how to achieve that goal, okay? We know what it takes to get there, and if we don’t know, we certainly can inform ourselves as to how to get there.

Jeff: Yeah. It’s like in one of my favorite books of the Habits, the Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, one of my favorite chapters is Begin with the End in Mind.

Doreen: Correct. Because we’re smart enough as humans to really understand that, hey, if I wanna do whatever it is I wanna do, here’s what I have to do and be patient.

I need to take that advice because I want things to happen immediately, right? I want things to be like, Hey, let’s just jump from here to here. But it doesn’t work that way. You have to be patient with yourself, and I always like to say, treat yourself as you would treat your best friend when the failures come and they will come.

How would you talk to your best friend if she said to you or he said to you, you know what? I got on the scale and I gained another pound even though I’ve been so committed, you probably wouldn’t say, you know what, you kind of stink at this. And why don’t you just give up today and go eat everything.

In fact, why don’t you get together with me and we’ll just go like, on a splurge of the eating, whatever your choice is, right? Your friend wouldn’t say that to you nor would you say that to your friend. So treat yourself with the respect and dignity and give yourself the same courtesy of being your own best friend.

Talking about books, there’s a book I love, I read it a while ago. It’s a little bit of a involved read, but, and it’s by Jim Collins. It’s called Good is the Enemy of Greats. Looking over to see if I have it right here in my bookcase. But it’s a great book that basically teaches that sometimes you have to be okay with letting go of good to achieve greatness, right?

Like things might be working and your career is doing well and you’re making money and you enjoy what you’re doing and it’s good but you have something else that you wanna do and you could be great at it. Like it could be really great and wonderful for you, but you stay with the good because it’s known. We talked about that in the beginning.

It’s a great book. I would encourage those who are interested in reading it, pick it up.

Jeff: You know, but only you can define your what’s great to you. Cuz what’s good to somebody might be great to somebody else. So, I mean, when, that’s when you have to kind of understand in your own mind your goals of greatness they require some good times in between.

Doreen: Right? In other words, it’s going to go through different cycles. You’re gonna go through hard times, not so good times. Good times to get to the greatness.

Jeff: Failures.

Doreen: Failures, for sure. Absolutely. So I asked the listeners, you know, What is it that you want for your new next chapter after divorce?

You know, what are the things that you will let go of, even if they bring you comfort and stability today, so that you can permit yourself to really have the opportunity to experience your personal best self and the greatness that you have inside you. Your truth of who you wanna be, and knowing the why behind it is the first step.

That’s where I say do the audit. And this is not an hour conversation with yourself. This is really sitting down, maybe journaling it to begin with. Putting those different areas, like I said, the pieces of the pie. What is my social life? What is my career? What is my family life? Who are my, you know, whatever it is, and then really analyzing it and it just takes time.

Jeff: That’s so important cuz divorce, whether you like it or not, is going to force you to reinvent what type of reinvention you do to yourself. That’s completely up to you. So taking the time, like you just said, to really focus on what you want and how you’re gonna get there is a big, big part.

Doreen: Absolutely. Another thing I want to address, which I think goes hand in hand with this subject is that divorce is a time to truly let go, right?

To let go of the anger, the hurt, the disappointment, the blaming, and to use all of that energy. to divert yourself to a new beginning. Put all that into there. You see a lot of clients after divorce that are so focused on their ex, you know, how they got hurt, how they were wronged, trying to use the legal system to punish them.

What they end up doing is just punishing themselves. Because the part of rediscovering who you are, part of the audit has to also include that letting go and using all that amazing, beautiful energy, turning it from something negative to something amazing.

Jeff: Well, they, and they also say, I’m not saying we’re revenge is a good thing but they, they do say that success is the best revenge.

Doreen: Right. Well, moving on with you, you shouldn’t. Well, but I would, I would venture to say, I mean, you, you’re not looking for a revenge. If you’re looking for a revenge, then we need to do some talking. Gimme a call.

Give me a call.

Jeff: That’s not what I meant. Not what I meant. What I meant is if you are hurt and disappointed and you’re blaming and you turn that into success. The, that kind of gives you that revenge factor that is a little bit more motivating in a positive way.

Doreen: You don’t want revenge though, so

Jeff: I know maybe that, let’s not use the word revenge, but in my, in your mind or whoever’s going through that hurt and blame and disappointment. They may use that as fuel for the positive.

Doreen: Absolutely, a hundred percent. And then what happens is eventually you will be able to let go that anger, disappointment, revenge, whatever you’re feeling towards a divorce, towards your ex, towards the situation, whatever it is, right?

Jeff: Yeah. Cause the success feels so good.

Doreen: It does feel good. And then eventually you’ll wake up one day you’ll go through an entire day and you never even thought about your ex, you never thought about all the pain and the divorce. Like you’re you really, like after a day, you’re like wait a second, like, I didn’t even think about my divorce today. I didn’t think about all the situations that went along with it.

Jeff: Or maybe you’re getting along better now and he’s not as bad as you thought they were.

Doreen: Correct. Well, that’s getting to another place, but yeah, for sure. Yeah. So that’s our podcast today. Our episode today, we just wanted to encourage everybody out there to use the opportunity of divorce no matter where you are in the process, if you’re in the beginning, middle, you’re after the divorce or even years later, you know, some people hold on to this anger, disappointment for many, many, many years.

Time to let go. Time to be okay with focusing on you. You deserve it. You’re amazing just the way you are, and you truly can have anything you want in your life. You can. So go out there and make it happen my friends.

Jeff: Sounds great to me.

Doreen: All right, let’s go Enjoy a wedding.

Jeff: Yeah, he does. And she did.

Doreen: How many times as a side note, I had clients when I was dealing with a divorce. I’ll never get married again. It’s not gonna happen. And then you end up getting married again, like when you least expect it. Just changing the subject a little bit sometimes, you know, if you’re closed to that, because you have so much anger and disappointment, you’re not gonna let anybody else in.

You know, people are just not attracted to that. So letting go can open up opportunities and so many levels.

Jeff: Absolutely.

Doreen: All right. Have a beautiful, beautiful day my friends. Love yourself. Be kind to others, and remember, you can have an amazing life after divorce. See you next week.

Jeff: Bye-bye

Doreen: Bye.

Jeff: You have the vision of what you want your life to look like after divorce, but maybe you just don’t know how to get there. So if you’re ready to take control of your life and want to find out more about our coaching, visit us at That’s L A D as in life after divorce dash

Doreen: Until next time, have an amazing rest of your day. And remember, yes, you can have an amazing life after divorce.


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