AZ asks: What Is The Great Life and How Can It Help With Divorce?

AZ asks: What Is The Great Life and How Can It Help With Divorce?AZ asks: What Is The Great Life and How Can It Help With Divorce?

When going through a divorce, it can seem like everything in life is falling apart. You may benefit from Leadership Worx’s system called Great Life, which uses a combination of life coaching, books, assessments and seminars to help individuals and organizations gain control in order to find greatness. Today, Dr. Tomi Bryan and Ms. Judy Johnson share how the Great Life system can help with going through a divorce.

Dr. Bryan is co-author of The 5 Keys to the Great Life and several other books. She uses her traditional and non-traditional experiences to help people live their greatness. An attorney since 1989, she holds a law degree from Wake Forest University and a PhD in management with a specialization in organizational leadership and change from Walden University. She is certified by The Leadership Circle™ to deliver their classes and administer and deliver their 360° Assessment, Cultural Survey Assessment and Follow Through Tool. Dr. Bryan is also a certified soul coach and past life regression coach. She has attended workshops presented by clairvoyant Debra Katz, internationally known dowser Raymon Grace and spiritual leader Bill Bauman. Dr. Bryan lives in Greensboro, NC, with her husband Jim, her two sons, Shep and Warren, and their dog Lucky.   She can be reached at:

A co-creator of The Great Life Workshops, Ms. Johnson has a broad array of experiences in social services and training. She spent several years working as a probation and parole officer and social worker in criminal and juvenile justice. She also served as social services director for a residential facility for the developmentally disabled and as administrator of a statewide child abuse hotline. She has extensive experience in developing and managing statewide government certification training programs in child welfare and juvenile justice. She holds a bachelor’s degree in sociology and education and a master’s degree in social work. She also lives in Greensboro with her husband, Arnold, and dog Sage. Her good friends and adult children Kenneth and Erika make her happy, and her grandchildren complete her great life.  She can be reached at:

      AZ asks: What is the Great Life system and how can it help me with divorce? 

If we don’t have a framework for managing transitions, they can cause a hard stop in our lives and make wounds that last a lifetime. In the Great Life system, we talk about  self as the center of your universe and the five elements that impact that self: family, friends, finances, faith and fun. Divorce can impact each of these dimensions.The Great Life system allows you to really learn where life may be misaligned (hence the divorce) and how to really get to know yourself, which may shed light on why the marriage didn’t work or why your spouse was not a “good fit” for you. Divorce can shatter you. The Great Life model can help you rebuild those fragments into a Great Life.

AZ asks:  Everything is falling apart. How do I pull my life back together?

As Dr. Bryan notes in the book, everything in her life was falling apart too. She used the system to help gain control over her life and to understand who she was. There is great personal power and strength derived from knowing who we are. It gives us the ability to know what we can control and what we can’t. Thus, when we feel everything is falling apart, the model in the book helps us pull it all back together. By completing the Great Life Profile, you can see which dimensions need to be addressed and then develop a plan to get your life back on track. Strategies to rebuild each of these dimensions are listed throughout the 5 Keys to the Great Life.

AZ asks: How can I silence my inner critic?

Our book offers several ways to help you think positively.

  • Whenever you hear the inner critic saying something negative, counteract it with a positive statement. Repeat the positive comments to yourself until they become unconscious thoughts. (pp.46-47)
  • Each morning develop positive mantras to say to yourself out loud. (p. 47)
  • Listen to CDs about building self confidence, thinking positively and creating peak performance. (p.49) Agreat place to start is with Jack Canfield’s book, The Success Principles: How to Get from Where You Are to Where You Want to Be, or his CD set, Maximum Confidence: Ten Secrets of Extreme Self-Esteem.
  • Complete the Repeating Patterns Assessment to determine which patterns need to be broken. (p.50)
  • Complete the Storytelling Assessment to determine if you need to rewrite your story so that you can remove self-imposed limitations (p.52)

AZ asks:  How can I recognize what values are important to me?

The 5 Keys to the Great Life offers many strategies for discerning your values and determining if you are living true to them. The book contains Values Cards, which can be reviewed to help you select five values that best represent you. The book also offers exercises to help you determine if your current behavior or situation in each dimension is consistent with the value listed.

AZ asks:  How do I create a new Great Life? 

Our book helps you see which dimensions need to be addressed and offers strategies to help you do this. We also recommend a Great Life coach to help move you through the behavior loops you might be caught in. Sometimes we need help seeing our self-sabotaging patterns.

AZ asks:  How can I determine my goals for the future?

In the book, we actually have you create two life points: where you are and where you want to be. It is just like MapQuest directions: You must know where you are to get directions to where you are going and you must know where you are going if you want to get there from here. Thus, the current reality assessment develops the point on the map where you are. From there, you can figure out where you want to go.

AZ asks:  How can I look at my ex honestly?

Sometimes, when we are in the emotion of a moment, we don’t really see ourselves or others accurately. Taking time to reflect, when you are not feeling emotionally charged, will allow you to see what role each of you played in the divorce. To do this, we recommend something the AWE method: Analyze, Write, Explain. This technique helps you to analyze answers to questions, write about your answers and explain your findings to a friend or partner to see if your conclusions make sense. This will help you look at your family members honestly and move forward with your life. Once we understand how we may have contributed to the situation, we might be kinder and gentler in dealing with the ex because we know we are partly to blame, too.

AZ asks:  What courageous actions do you recommend?

In a divorce, the most courageous action is to let go. This requires you to do many things: accept the end of the marriage, forgive each person for their role in the demise of the relationship, let go of past hurts and let go of the person as a mate. Doing so frees us to move forward with our lives and be open to what new and amazing things are out there in the world with our names on them. If we can’t let go, we allow ourselves to be forever rooted in the moment and, in doing so, we allow the divorce to be a defining moment in our lives. We then spend our lives thinking and feeling as if we were wronged. When we do that, we limit what good the world can bring us. Additionally, if there are children involved, letting go is essential so that the divorced couple don’t use the children as weapons in the fight against each other. Respecting your ex (you don’t have to like him, but you must respect his human dignity) makes all the difference in how the rest of your life goes.

Dr. Tomi Bryan and Ms. Judy Johnson  are not affiliated with Zuraw Financial Advisors, LLC.

About Ann Zuraw

Ann Zuraw, the voice behind "Chicks, Chat and Change", is a Certified Financial Planner (CFP®), Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA®), and Certified Divorce Financial Analyst (CDFA™). If you have comments on this post contact Ann Zuraw

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