It’s so hard to keep boundaries in a 24/7 world. Everyone wants an immediate response, whether a text, email/message, or phone call (although those are rare, right?). I know in the past I’ve complained “they always have their phone in their hand, why aren’t they answering me?”.
Last week my husband, two of our “kids” and their spouses, and I took a quick 4 day adventure to Florida. It was a celebration in many ways, mostly that we survived 2019. Plus, both of the couples hadn’t had a honeymoon due to their military training and we wanted to give them some time away (albeit with their parents tagging along). No laptops allowed. And phones set to emergency calls/texts only. We were going to create boundaries from real life. Or so we tried and
succeeded for the most part – until I started to receive messages with “I know you’re on vacation, but…”
I’ve always been a people pleaser, and add a business to the resume where you’re trained to always be available to your clients/customers. But at what sacrifice? I sat on the bus back to our resort on the first evening and started to cry. I was at the happiest place on earth but I was overwhelmed. If I didn’t answer the person she would hate me, or Yelp me, or tell all her friends I was terrible that I didn’t answer. Or never book an appointment. Or unfriend me. And then I stopped my Alice in Wonderland, down the rabbit hole, thinking and thought how ridiculous I was being. If anyone hated me – they didn’t really know me. It was up to me to put up boundaries. And I did. And she understood.
If someone can’t handle your ‘no’, then they likely aren’t worth your ‘yes’. Empaths are notorious for allowing others to break the bubble of boundaries. Sure we can complain about the boundaries being crossed, but WE have to set them and continue to create reinforcement.
REPEAT AFTER ME:
I don’t have to do what everyone wants me to do.
I don’t have to anticipate everyone’s needs.
I don’t need anyone to approve of me.
I don’t have to explain myself.
I don’t need to feel guilty for having boundaries.
I don’t have to say yes if I want to say no.
I don’t need to feel bad if I want to stay home.
I don’t have to put others before myself.
I don’t need to feel what others feel.
It is not my job to fix everyone (or anyone).
I don’t have to overextend myself.
I am allowed to take time to relax.
I don’t have to be connected to my computer/phone.
I don’t have to immediate answer everyone.
I don’t have to fight everyone to prove I’m right.
I am allowed to speak kind to myself.
I am allowed to peacefully step away from situations.
Those who truly love you will want you to do what’s best for you when it comes to self care. Those who truly love you may not like the boundaries, but they will respect them.
Do you have habits that are draining you, disintegrating your boundaries, and stressing you out? I realized on my break that I needed to make some changes in my life that included closing my laptop and silencing my phone at 6 pm, and not turning it on until 8 am (I receive texts and calls at all hours of the night/morning). I need to take days off and not just say they are days off, but truly NOT work. And I need to stop saying yes when I want to say no. And I need to stop apologizing.
Life is short. Tomorrow isn’t guaranteed. Make your time well spent and treat yourself well. Boundaries aren’t easy, but are needed.
I believe in you.
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