If you are contemplating divorce but dreading it at the same time, you are not the only one. However, do not make the mistake of believing everything negative you see and hear about divorce in the media and from friends and family.

Although many divorces are painful and full of drama, with the following suggestions, yours does not have to be. 

Set aside emotion

It is natural for fear, anger, sadness or guilt to get in the way of successful communication with your ex. Strong emotions can make you want to fight with your spouse every chance you get, even inside of the courtroom. You may feel some satisfaction in letting your spouse know how you feel, but by allowing your emotions to take control, you could hinder your divorce goals and lose ground at the negotiation table. Not only that, if your partner perceives your attitude or tone as disrespectful or rude, it could trigger him or her into a negative reaction.

Plan ahead for smooth communication

It may help to make a list of the things you want in the divorce, as well as the things you are willing to negotiate over. Remind yourself that this discussion is essentially a business transaction that has nothing to do with the events and behaviors that led to the divorce, and work to stay on topic.

Focus on the future

While you need to face your emotions rather than bury them, it is also not healthy to dwell too much on the past. You are starting a new phase in life, so this is the time to think about what your life as a divorcee will be like and what you want now that your circumstances have changed. Use this outlook to strategize your exit plan so you can achieve a strong financial foundation and happiness.