When a couple goes through a collaborative divorce, we ask both participants to set goals. We ask them to set goals for the process- those can range from how you want to show up; how quickly the process goes; how much it costs. We also ask you to set goals for where you want to be at the conclusion of the collaborative process. Those goals can include how you want to interact with your child; how you want to interact with your former spouse; how you want to feel about the process and the resolution or your financial health.
There are several purposes for having you set goals. Some people haven’t thought about what they really want out of the divorce. That initial step is often overlooked. We want your goals to be big picture and future focused. Having your goals in mind as we go through the case, helps guide the team. Usually, when discussing the couple’s individual goals, we see that both individuals have many shared goals.
These goals give us all a set of direction. Its impossible to know if you’re heading the right way if you don’t know where you’re going. The team’s objective is to help you achieve as many of your goals as possible.
Having goals helps you focus on what you want out of the divorce. We encourage you to think deeper than just wanting a divorce or wanting custody of your kids. Clearly defining where you want to be once the process is over allows you the best chance of getting there. The best way to achieve any goal is to clearly define it and focus on it.
We refer to goals to assist us with settlement. Prior to difficult conversations, we’ll often refer back to your goals. This reminds us all why we’re having these conversations and what we’re hoping to accomplish. Often when someone becomes positional during a divorce, reviewing our goals will determine whether that position is aligned with our goals and worth pursuing or is based more on emotion.
When you think about goals think about all the different categories of your life, including your finances, housing, your relationship with your children, your relationship with your former spouse; your former spouse’s relationship with your children; parenting time; your housing; and your state of mind after the divorce. Some of my favorite articulated goals are: