Divorce can be a demanding process, regardless of how complicated or amicable it may be. There are financial, familial, legal and lifestyle issues to address, and this is all on top of the emotional toll a split can take on two people.

For many people, divorce is stressful enough without the added obstacle of contention. If you are divorcing and hoping to avoid heated disputes, there are ways you can do this.

  1. Opt for out-of-court resolutions-Litigation can bring out the worst in people, as it pits divorcing parties against each other. Out-of-court solutions like mediation or collaboration require parties to work together to settle divorce-related matters. This approach incentivizes cooperation and amicability.
  2. Keep communication civil-Even when you are not in court or mediation, keep communication civil. This includes what you say in texts, emails and even posts on social media. Being civil toward each other can prevent any bad feelings or fights that can result from angry or disrespectful statements.
  3. Know your priorities-Divorces can become especially contentious when one or both parties fight at every opportunity. To avoid this, set your priorities. Know the issues that are most important to you and prepare some possible resolutions for those. You don’t have to battle it out on every item: focus your energy on solving the matters most important to you.
  4. Be prepared to compromise-For many, the goal of a divorce is not to win, but to end a difficult chapter fairly and peacefully. To do this, focus on the give-and-take. If you want to keep the house, for instance, you might agree to take over payments for more debt.
  5. Focus on the big picture-While it might seem like winning arguments or trying to hurt an ex will help you feel better during a divorce, the fact is that your settlement will affect you years to come. Instead of focusing on the immediate tension and scenarios involved, try to remember that there is life after divorce. And minimizing conflict and spiteful decisions can provide a more positive outlook.

These tips can make it easier for parties to navigate the divorce process more quickly with less contention. If keeping a divorce amicable is important to you, or if you have children who you want to protect from an unnecessarily bitter divorce, these suggestions can help you do that.