Divorce is a stressful time when raw emotions can try the patience of even those who are normally known for their ability to be stoic under pressure. Although sitcoms and movies are filled with dramatic divorce battles, most couples would prefer to want to avoid tense negotiations and heated exchanges. In fact, by the time couples actually file for divorce, most just want to deal with the legalities of divorce as quickly as possible and get on with their lives.

If you are divorcing your spouse and you would like to keep the process moving along at an amicable level, here are some tips to help you succeed in this difficult feat.  

Seek counseling 

Unanswered questions, doubts, and accusations often plague each spouse, making the path to divorce very contentious. Seeking counseling on your own can help you work through negative thoughts on your own so that they do not spill out during negotiations with your soon-to-be ex-spouse. A caring counselor can help you begin to move your focus to the future and let go of a difficult or painful past

Set mutual goals

When divorcing spouses can agree on a few major mutual goals, it will be easier to deal with the smaller annoyances along the way. The welfare of shared children is an example of a common major goal that both spouses can generally agree on. By choosing to work together to ensure that their children's lives remain as stable and secure as possible, both during and after the divorce, divorcing spouses can begin to build a different, positive relationship that will make the process easier.

If both parents are devoted to the children, working toward a shared custody arrangement may be best for both parents, as well as the children. For example, some parents may decide to share custody while maintaining homes that are in the same school district or neighborhood. Doing this allows the kids to more easily maintain a close relationship with both parents by making it possible for them to move freely between the two homes on a more frequent basis than a traditional visitation schedule would allow.

In addition to being emotionally healthier for the children, a carefully crafted, mutually agreeable custody agreement can remove much of the stress involved in negotiating child support or deciding who will have primary or physical custody. 

Be fair with finances 

While the urge to clean out the savings account or hide assets is sure to be strong, doing so is both morally and legally wrong. Doing so will also set you up for even more difficult negotiations with your spouse to determine how money, property, and even financial responsibilities for the children, such as education and health care will be divided. Divorcing spouses who keep financial discussions on a fair, businesslike level will be more apt to receive the same type of respect.

Consider other options

If both you and your soon-to-be ex can agree to work together on the terms of your divorce, you may be able to bypass a lengthy court proceeding. In some states, mediation, collaborative divorce, and a few other options can be used instead of a more complicated courtroom battle to obtain a divorce. 

Seek independent counsel 

Even in situations where both spouses are able to work together to obtain the divorce, it is critically important for both parties to have their own trusted legal counsel. This allows each one to seek advice as issues come up in the negotiations and then use what they learn to make informed decisions. 

The first step in achieving an amicable divorce process begins with an honest conversation with your divorce lawyer. By seeking legal counsel as soon as possible, you and your spouse will be better able to deal with the divorce and move ahead to enjoy a happier future. 

Contact a law firm like Katzman Logan Halper & Bennett for more information.