If you're co-parenting with an ex-spouse, you'll have to cultivate a relationship that is more organized than when you were married.
This can be difficult when one parent finds the divorce hard to accept, but it's a critical step in transitioning to something akin to a business partnership, especially when children are involved.
"It requires a certain conscious planning ahead in terms of how you're going to communicate with each other and what kind of schedules you're going to have," says Carolyn Ellis, author of "The 7 Pitfalls of Single Parenting."
In her book, Ellis advocates an even-keeled style of communication devoid of hostility or even negative nonverbal social cues, particularly when the children are present or within earshot. "Parents who demean the other parent to their children typically do it to foster a greater sense of loyalty to them. This strategy can backfire in the long run," she writes. "Making children choose a side between Mom and Dad is unhealthy for their long-term happiness and success."
Cultivating a business-like relationship with a former spouse is a good start, but it's also critical for you to develop a forward-looking self-image.
Ellis, a certified divorce coach based in Toronto, says it's very easy to remain emotionally stuck if you don't have a new vision of your post-married life.
"Without that new vision, it's like trying to drive a car, but you're only looking in the rearview mirror," she says. "The most amazing opportunities could be right outside in front of you."