THE BLOG
01/06/2014 03:52 pm ET Updated Mar 08, 2014

Three Good Things About Your Otherwise Terrible Divorce

It's probably off-putting to read a headline trumpeting anything good about an experience that blows as much as going through a divorce. But there are actually some good things that come along with this otherwise completely sucky process. And although you might not be able to appreciate this yet, I'm going to tell you these things now so they can serve as a beacon of hope.

1. As Billy Crystal might say, You'll look marvelous! Eventually, that is. You're almost guaranteed to drop a significant amount of weight. And don't take this the wrong way because I'm just going off of statistics here, but you (like the rest of the country) can probably stand to lose a few pounds. (Again, no judgment. I'm in the same gravy boat myself.)

Anywho, all of this weight loss won't look or feel good on you at first. You'll resent it because of what the weight loss broadcasts to the rest of the planet. It's like walking around with a sandwich board hanging from your neck announcing that you're under crushing stress and you've lost of control everything in your life, including something as basic as your ability to keep those stubborn pounds on, no matter what.

And your dramatic weight loss combined with your puffy, bloodshot eyes and dazed expression that is reminiscent of someone who has just been clubbed in the head with a two-by-four all add up to a frightening sight indeed. But eventually the stress will subside, your sleep patterns will return to normal, and you will stop bursting into tears 18 times a day. What you'll be left with then is a slamming post-divorce body. And you're going to appreciate the hell out of it, I promise.

2. You'll find out who your friends really are. I don't mean that in an ominous way. I mean this in a good way. Trying times have a way of bringing people together -- or driving them apart. You're going to need a shoulder to cry on sometimes (okay, a lot of the time, especially at first); but you will also occasionally need someone to shake you by the shoulders and tell you to get a hold of yourself, or knock it off, or both. Be careful not to punish or drive away the friends who are willing to do both of these things for you, rather than just tell you how awesome you are all the time. Because the friends who are willing and able to do both are true friends indeed.

3. You'll get to clean house. And I don't mean this in a literal way -- as in vacuuming the floor and doing laundry. I would never pitch actual housework as a plus, because other than my sister-in-law, I've never met anyone who enjoys doing housework. (And her house always looks amazing, by the way.) I mean that you'll have an opportunity to get rid of crap you don't want or need anymore -- both literally and figuratively. Getting a divorce means one household is divided into two, and someone has to move out. And when someone moves out, stuff goes with her. Whether you're moving or staying put, you're going to end up with less stuff. Capitalize on that momentum. Use it as a chance to rid yourself of stuff you've been hanging onto for years -- stuff that amounts to useless clutter that weighs you down and boxes you in, both emotionally and physically. Both the process and the result will be very therapeutic.

And while you're at it, use this major life change as a chance to figuratively clean house, too. Identify six bad habits and replace them with healthy ones instead. There's nothing like a complete change in your routine to make this easier than ever. So if you've spent the last 12 years watching reality shows every night, this is your chance to start living your own life instead. Get up off the couch and head outside for a walk or go to the gym. But for everyone's sake, please stay out of the bars. (I said please.)

Good things are coming your way. All you have to do is keep putting one foot in front of the other, and not do anything stupid in the meantime. Know that I'm totally rooting for you. Good luck!