Every time we say things like: “I am not strong enough to face this alone”, or “I am not smart enough to create something like that by my own”, or even when we think we do not deserve someone’s love, we are boycotting ourselves.

These are made-up stories about ourselves that we repeat in our heads and stop us from making any progress.

In this episode of the Divorce Angel Podcast, I share with you the lessons I learnt from my divorce, and I offer guidance on how to deal with the stories we tell ourselves.

Let’s get into it:


The first lesson I learnt from my divorce. I am strong [00:01:50]

The importance of having a plan [00:03:00] 

Lesson Two. I am smart enough[00:04:30]

Everyone’s got abilities [00:06:00]

Lesson Three. I am resourceful [00:7:20]

Lesson Four. I am lovable [00:9:00]

Lesson Five. I am a good person [00:11:00]

You have everything you need inside of you [00:15:00]


My book: The Jelly Bean Jar – Empowering Independence through Divorce


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Welcome back to the divorce Angel podcast. I’m so happy that you can be with me today. I’m loving doing this podcast, I truly am. And I’ve gone back and listened to some of the old ones and there’s a big difference in my voice. I love it. So, what I want to have a chat today about is personal. I want to talk about the lessons that I learned from my relationship breakdown. It can be something that you could learn as well. 


Depending on where you are in your relationship breakup, I want you to understand that if you have not even left, or if you’ve already left and you are in the very dark beats of the relationship breakdown, then it will be okay. If I can tell you what I learned and how my life turns around, maybe you will know that everything will be okay. And my mentor says something that goes along the lines of this, it always was, is and will be okay. And that’s what I want you to understand because it’s true. When you’re in it you can’t say that it’s going to end but it will end. 


One of the lessons that I learned from my relationship breakdown is I’m stronger than I ever thought possible. When I look back to my childhood and the person I was, and where I fit it in the family and the relationship breakdown that my parents had. I didn’t know that I had the power to leave an unhappy relationship. I remember when my first husband and I started going out together. I recalled saying to him, that before we get married, we need to live together because I do not want to get divorced. I want to make sure that you are the right person for me. 


I thought by living with him for a year before we got married, I would learn all of his habits and things that I didn’t like, and make sure that he was the forever person for me. Little did I know that as we got older, and we grew different ways, that we would grow apart or that our aligned values, especially after having children, or unaligned values because we voted different political parties, he would believe in certain things that I didn’t believe. 

And those things at the start weren’t a problem. But in the end, the longer we’ve been together, they were disgracing. Especially every time he spoke about something when I thought the opposite, it was too hard. And I thought I’m not strong enough to do this. 

Added my 22-year marriage, probably for the first 16 years I did love him, and I thought we would be together forever. It took me probably six years to have enough courage to leave because I didn’t think I was strong enough. I didn’t think I could do it. And as I’ve spoken on previous podcast, they were just stories I was telling myself. Stupid stories. I was strong enough. But I needed to have a plan. And if I had a plan, it would make everything easier. 

And it’s one of the biggest issues that I see today is people don’t think through the consequences. And that’s why we do a divorce roadmap because if you’ve got a plan, you’ve got the knowledge and you know what steps you need to take and it can make all of the difference. 


The other lesson I learned is I used to think I’m not smart enough. I can’t do this. I’m not smart enough. My ex-husband was very clever. We could go to the supermarket and I would have a trolley full of groceries and he would be able to add up what the groceries would come to before the cash register. My feeling, because we got married so young, was that I can’t do this by myself. I’m not smart enough to do this. 

Is such a silly thing because when I look back, I was the one that encouraged him to start his own business. I wouldn’t source the funding for that to happen. I went and found the house that we lived in and helped renovate it. There was so much that I did not give myself credit for because he was smart. I just thought I was not smart enough. 

What I know now is tenacity can get you so far in the world. I’ve seen people highly intelligent, but cannot talk to other people.

Just because someone has an MBA in something does not mean that they are any better than I am. 


When I was working at the airport, we had the Dalai Lama come through, we head up to stars all the time, there was always someone walking through. And I remember the CEO said to me, Tanya, I’ve never known anyone that treats every person the same. It didn’t matter if it was the Dalai Lama, it did not matter if it was the cleaner, or it was the person on the crossing, I treated everyone the same, with the same respect that I was taught by my parents and grandparents. 

We are all smart differently is the truth of the matter. Everyone’s got abilities, special gifts that we bring to the world, and those things we bring to the world make us individuals. So because I might not be able to add up a trolley full of food does not mean that I am not smart. I look back now. And I see what I’ve done. I’ve written a book, I started two businesses. I’ve been able to support myself. I went and did a job that put my life at risk and had an AFP risk assessment against me, which sorry for those overseas is the strange Federal Police. 


But I was able to do all of those things. Yet I had this story before I left my relationship that I was not smart. The other lesson that I learned was how resourceful I could be. There’s a difference between resources and resourceful. And when you have resources, that’s things that you can get your hands on very quickly. It could be money. You have money that you can go and buy things.

Resourcefulness is when you can use your abilities and skills to get further in life. I did not understand the power of being resourceful. I recently did an exercise where I could go over what I thought were all my values in life and I’ve always thought that one of my greatest values was tenacity and resourcefulness. 

When I did a list of my values, I realized that tenacity might be one of my top 10 values. It was a big driver, but my resourcefulness has been key to where I am today.


We live in an amazing world. Resources are easy to find with the internet. The answers to every question out there is at our fingertips. But we need to understand what is it that we’re looking for. Then we can go and find it. 

The other big lesson that I learned was that I’m lovable. Before I left my relationship, I had this void in me. I wanted to feel what love was about. So when my ex-husband said that he loved me because I didn’t love him back, there was this emptiness in me, it was barren


It was very hurtful to have this void in myself. But when I decided to leave, I remember thinking no one will ever love me again. Why would someone love me? I’m going to be divorced. I’m not good enough. All of these silly stories going through my mind again. No one is going to love me. That was not true. This is what was keeping me in the relationship. I’m not lovable. I’m broken. I’m not okay. I’m not able to keep a marriage together. There’s gotta be something wrong with me, right? No, that’s all wrong. But at the time with my limited resources, I thought that this was all true. And it’s not. 


The other lesson that I learned was that I am a good person. 

When you’re fighting, words get said and it has consequences and of course, without knowing it, we are hurting the other person. I would think I’m not a good person for wanting to leave this relationship. I’m not a good person because I’m not only breaking his heart. The children aren’t going to have their mother and father living together. My inlaws, what are they going to think? What are our friends gonna think? But I look back now and I know I deserve to be happy, I deserve to have a good life, I am a good person. But at that particular moment, I kept thinking, I’m bad, this is not good. I’m gonna upset everyone’s life with my decision. 


I am a good person. But I didn’t realize it at the time. The biggest lesson of all and that lesson is that I can be happy. 

Now, the years have passed. I’m the happiest person I’ve been as long as I can remember. And I did a podcast on this a few weeks ago. When you’re happy, you make better decisions in your life. When you’re happy, good stuff happens in return, without even knowing it. Whether it’s the universe or whatever, it throws important things your way because you’re making steps in improving not only your life but the people around you. 

My happiness flows on to my children, to my parents, to my husband, to people I come in contact. My happiness is contagious. And I didn’t think that I could ever be happy again. 

And the lesson that I learned is that we are a reflection of our environment. Let me say that again. We are a reflection of our environment. So if you’re living in an unhappy household right now, you will be unhappy because you can’t be any other way. 

You need to get out of it. You deserve to be happy just like I do. You deserve whatever your life is meant to be. Don’t think that just because you’ve got a bigger picture, and it doesn’t align with what other people think, that you need to be kept small. You can do and be whatever you want to do and be. When I accumulate all of these lessons together, I’m not strong enough, and I can’t do this, I’m not smart. 


I’m not resourceful. I’m not lovable. I’m not a good person, and I can’t be happy. I can be all of those things plus more, so can you. 

Those are the lessons that I took away from that period of my life where things were pretty bad, and how I’ve turned all of that around to make good and you can do the same thing. 

Ask yourself, what are the lessons that you learned? Right now in your life, what are the lessons that are occurring in front of you that are teaching you something to make your future better? Because you might not realize it when you’re going through it. You might say, this is all bad. But remember what I’ve said, these are stories that you are telling yourself. Those lessons are teaching you something to have a better existence. 


Consider all of this. I hope my lessons if you’re going through a separation right now, might give you the ability to understand that around the corner is something amazing for you. Your life can be whatever you want it to be, and you are everything that you can be. 

What does that mean? It means right now inside of you, you are everything you can be. You have everything inside of you to make you happy and successful. You just have to dig deep and find it. But everything is there. It’s all there. I promise you. 

You can have the most amazing life if you choose to. And it’s all about choice. It’s all about the stories you tell yourself and stopping the negativity. 



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