Self-Care is Essential Right Now.
Setting Boundaries for Self-Care has never been more important.
I have been quiet.
I haven’t been quiet because I was “told” that I must be silent this week.
(To be clear, I prefer thoughtful interaction and discussion over silence).
I have been quiet because I have been “processing”.
I have been processing and I have been STRUGGLING.
I had a lightbulb moment yesterday.
Thank God I did because I needed it.
It dawned on me that it was time to set some boundaries for myself. It’s a big part of practicing self-care.
The term “boundaries” is something I learned about back in the early ‘90s.
I was going through a tough time and trying to figure it “all” out.
During a therapy session, my counselor handed me a yellow pad and asked me to create a list of the things I was struggling with in my relationship.
After I completed my list, I was handed a red Sharpie marker.
I was then told to put one red line under each item that felt “tolerable”,
two lines under things I’d accept on occasion but really didn’t care for,
and a full red BOX around the items that were 100% unacceptable in my life…
in other words, the things I had decided I would no longer tolerate.
It was a painful and hard exercise, but a much-needed one.
It was something I had to put a lot of thought into.
I had to think, then process my honest thoughts of what I was willing to accept in my life.
That was my first time setting boundaries.
And now it’s time to do it again.
Setting Boundaries for Self-Care is Helpful.
Set your boundaries.
Everyone has their own beliefs and feelings… and only YOU can set your boundaries.
They won’t be exactly the same as everyone else’s, and it may feel uncomfortable,
but THAT is okay.
Do it for YOU. (And for your sanity). #Youdoyou.
- Decide what is tolerable.
- Decide what you will accept on occasion even if you don’t really like it.
- Most of all, decide what things you will NOT tolerate.
Setting Boundaries isn’t Always Popular.
As you start a new day or perhaps a brand new journey in self-care, be aware that setting boundaries is not always popular.
People may not like the “new you”, or your new “boundaries”, but remember, this is not about them, this about you taking better care of yourself.
In order to practice self-care, you may “need” to hide, unfollow, or delete people on social media. (If seeing certain posts upset you, remind yourself of your boundaries).
You may need to LIMIT your time on social media as well. (Sometimes “unplugging” is necessary).
During this time of unrest in our nation, if you have an opposing view to the popular view, it may be hard, but stay true to yourself.
If you are willing to take part in open and thoughtful conversations, that is great! However, always remember you do not need to be a carbon copy of anyone else.
Resources for Setting Boundaries for Self-Care.
As a person who has actually practiced setting boundaries, I’d love to share a few resources. If you have never attempted this practice, there is no time like the present!
Easy to click to websites:
- 10 Ways to Build and Preserve Better Boundaries – Pscyhcentral.com
- The No “BS” Guide to Protecting your Emotional Space – Healthline.com
- 7 Tips to Create Healthy Boundaries with Others – Psychologytoday.com
- Setting Emotional Boundaries in Relationships – Roadtogrowthcounseling.com
- 10 Ways to Set Healthy Boundaries at Work – Forbes.com
- Codependent No More – Melody Beattie (The most helpful book I’ve ever read).
- Boundaries – Henry Cloud (Bestseller. Additional edition available on teenagers too!).
- Setting Boundaries with Difficult People – Allison Bottke (Starts with “Assemble a support group” – So important!)
Setting Boundaries is a Starting Point.
Obviously setting boundaries will not fix everything. But it’s a great starting point to living a life of self-care… which will lighten your stress!
Please be gentle with yourself as you find your way through these challenging times. Your future self will thank you. (Virtual hug).
Take care and feel free to reach out anytime: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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