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Can Divorce Give You A Heart Attack?

My new client shouted out the words, “I’d rather die than be divorced!”

The woman in her early 50s was beautifully dressed, attractive and carried an air of confidence that comes with someone of her years. I studied her face as she continued, “I just can’t bear the pain, my heart is breaking”.

Her words were so apt: the physical pain of heartbreak is very real. In a post on the American Heart Association’s website, Is Broken Heart Syndrome Real”, the author states:

“Broken heart syndrome, also called stress-induced cardiomyopathy or takotsubo cardiomyopathy, can strike even if you’re healthy…Women are more likely than men to experience the sudden, intense chest pain — the reaction to a surge of stress hormones — that can be caused by an emotionally stressful event. It could be the death of a loved one or even a divorce, breakup or physical separation, betrayal or romantic rejection.”

If the shock of a break-up can induce broken heart syndrome, where a part of the heart temporarily enlarges and pumps differently than usual, it is reasonable to suggest that when a person says their “heart is broken” it is a true and real experience for them.

In my years of working with people, I have come to understand heartbreak to be a “Crisis of the Heart” where spiritually the heart “cracks open” in order to allow us to love even more deeply. During heartbreak, we are challenged to fully open our hearts in order to allow us to experience a deeper layer of intimacy with ourselves and others.  It is the crisis itself which opens us up to a re-connection with ourselves, our self-expression and the truth of our soul.

More often than not, as the layers peel away, a crisis of the heart will reveal a necessary reflection of the deep disconnection many of us have within ourselves. It can be difficult to see and to be honest about this disconnection; yet when we do, the gifts received are immeasurable.

So the real challenge is “Do you choose to sit down and die? Or do you choose to embrace the pain, be vulnerable and look deeper into the depth of your soul?”

In other words: do you connect to your real truth? 

This was the question my client had to face…

If we fight the “crisis of the heart” by closing down our hearts we prolong our suffering, we create emotional, physical and mental blockages which impact our healing and our health. The challenge with closing our heart is that we disconnect even more from our flow of love and our spiritual energy.  Every crisis of the heart is an invitation to crack ourselves open and connect at a deeper level to the love within ourselves and to share this love with others.  Heartbreak and suffering are often seen as an opportunity to validate, justify and vindicate ourselves, to apportion blame and shame others in regards to their behaviours.

What, though, if this crisis of the heart was seen as an opportunity to take responsibility for ourselves and our well-being, and instead of buying into our fears, we embraced our crisis and connected to our hearts and opened ourselves up to the infinite source of love within us. The sooner we do this, the less we suffer and the crisis will pass.

With love

Maxine page sign off

The Conscious Break-Up

Conscious Break-Up Coaching supports both men and women at any stage of their divorce or break-up journey. It is a powerful way to create emotional stability, break old relationship patterns and to healing your heart during this time of deep transition.

 Five Steps to a Conscious Break-Up/ Divorce

Step 1 – Change Your Break-Up Story

Understanding your thoughts and feelings and the emotional impact of your divorce or break-up helps you to gain clarity and a sense of emotional balance and freedom at a time of complete overwhelm. The very nature of a break-up creates conflict, uncertainty, stress and feelings of being out of control of one’s life and future. The Conscious Break-Up provides you with techniques and strategies to “unpack” the negative emotions which keep you stuck in the pain of your break-up.

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Step 2 – Acceptance and Responsibility

Finding a place of acceptance of “what is” and choosing to take responsibility for your emotional well-being and your future, puts you back in your power centre.  When you take 100% responsibility for yourself, you stop being the victim of your circumstances and it enables you to access your personal power and your ability to move forward. Together we will “unlock” the hidden aspects of your break-up and your relationship patterns with your partners and previous relationships.  This is essential to your healing and to creating future loving relationships.


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Step 3 – Letting Go and Forgiveness

Choosing to forgive the other person is a very selfish thing to do and it’s good for you!!  This step is about healing your pain and claiming your freedom.  All relationships provide an opportunity for optimal learning, by choosing to let go and forgive yourself and your partner you discover the deeper meaning behind your break up and the true spiritual aspect of your divorce.  This is an essential part of setting healthy boundaries and negotiating through the roller coaster of emotions in your divorce proceedings.


Step 4 – Loving Yourself

The greatest love of all is the source of divine love that resides in each and every one of us. When we learn to fill ourselves up with love internally, we let go of the need to seek love and approval from others. In divorce, it is natural to shut down our heart to protect ourselves from pain, this is the antithesis to what is required to heal. I teach you powerful tools and resources to re-connect to your natural wellbeing and source of love. Warning; you will be seriously in love with yourself with these tools.

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Step 5 – Finding Your Silver Lining

Who are you now? Every cloud has a silver lining, and when you are able to see the blessing and gift in your divorce, you are truly healed. By embracing the gifts of your experience, we will refocus and move forward with a vision for your new life. Here I share with you the tools for creating anything from a job, home, relationship and more.

Can I do this if I am separated or still married?

People come to this program at various stages of their relationship, some people are separated, in the process of divorce or have been divorced for some years.  If you are still married and considering divorce, then The Conscious Break-Up process is ideal for making that decision. Maxine’s packages are tailor made to exactly where you are in your divorce journey. All the tools you learn will help you shift the pain and fear of where you are now and enable you to make powerful choices that are true to your heart.

Can we do this as a couple?

Maxine works with couples, please use the contact form to arrange a confidential consultation.

How does the coaching work?

Maxine’s coaching is tailored to suit you and your needs, whether this is a one off session to gain clarity and balance, or on-going coaching. Maxine is available for face to face coaching, coaching over Skype and telephone.  Maxine also provides specialised individual, group retreats and workshops.

the HEART class

“It’s all about the heart”

A fusion of self-discovery, fun and playing with art.


Picture improving your relationships with friends, lovers, existing partners, work colleagues, the list is endless. If you want to have better relationships, then this class is for you…

It’s a fun class where we use art and meditation to explore how our thoughts and feelings get in the way of having what we want. Whether it’s a great relationship, fabulous jobs or the body we have always dreamed of.

The way we think and the feelings we have, constantly get in the way of what we want to create or experience in our daily lives.  We are “meaning making machines” and are always making things up, more often than not, in a way that disempowers us, leaving us feeling “not good enough or unloved”. How many times have you had an argument with your spouse or friend and simply not understood why it happened or it’s left you feeling “bad” about yourself?

In this class, we play with art and meditation. We use a simple and easy process to help us to resolve the challenges and conflicts we experience in our lives, whether it’s at work with our colleagues, our partners, children or friends.  This class shows you how to effortlessly tap into your imagination and unlock your creativity. I promise you don’t need to know how to draw to experience the huge learning in this class.


What’s it all about?

This is a two and a half hour class, where you discover:-

  • How to let go of stress and feel relaxed
  • Create more time for what you love
  • Improve your relationships
  • Learn to listen to your intuition


Who’s it for?

Anyone who wants to learn to have better relationships. Families and friends, busy stressed out working or stay at home mums. Career women.  Over a glass of wine, a cup of tea or coffee, it’s a time of fun, laughter and bonding. Arrange an evening at your own home as an alternative to book club, a hen party, birthday celebration, or a simple get together with like minded friends.

Arrange an evening at your home as an alternative to book club, a hen party, birthday celebration, or a get together with  friends.

To host an evening at your home, please contact Maxine.  Alternatively, check here for our next event.

Previous art experience not needed. Art supplies will be provided by the facilitator.