As self-made women always looking at the world with an entrepreneurial lens, it can be against our nature to let those around us down. This results in overextending ourselves in hopes that we’re helping everyone else out. Then, when all is said and done, we have little desire to give whatever is left to us. We begin to wonder why we feel so burnt out and helpless when it comes to solving our own issues or taking care of bodies. The unavoidable answer to our problems is boundaries.
These can be hard to establish when we’ve taken on the role as friend, counselor, teacher, and caretaker for everyone. Yet, anyone who truly cares about you will understand the boundaries needed to keep your mental and physical health in check. Since setting boundaries can be an unfamiliar task, you’re probably left wondering “where do I start?” Here are some simple ways to practice building boundaries around your life.
Let Go of Everyone’s Baggage
When we have close relationships with friends and family, it’s common to always be on comfort watch when they have problems within their lives. Yet, no matter how much you believe it in your heart, their problems are not your own. You must be careful not to drag their problems beyond the doors of your home. Holding on to their baggage may seem like the correct thing to do, but how can you come to anyone’s rescue when you’ll needing the saving for yourself? Be the best friend or relative you can be by recognizing their problems but set healthy boundaries so that you don’t bring them upon yourself. This can look like leaving a room or situation when it gets too heavy for you, reminding yourself that you are your own person, or loving certain people from a distance. You can’t hold onto everyone’s problems; you’ll end up breaking yourself in the process.
Practice Saying “No” in the Mirror
Saying “No” isn’t as easy as we think it is, especially to the people we hold near and dear to us. Yet, saying no is a practice of the free-spirited and free-willed. Once you exercise the power of no and realize it—you’ll gain a strength within yourself that you’d never known was there. For those of us who can’t seem to muster the words out, practice first in front of your mirror. Test out saying no in different ways, with different looks, and different stances. This makes you more comfortable when having to use the word for the betterment of your own health.
Speak Up When Something Is Bothering you
Some of us are silent about the things that bother us in efforts not to risk comfortability or to stir up any trouble. Yet, when you stay in your comfort zone you cannot thrive at your best potential. As women, it has been commonly engraved in society to silence our discomfort to make others feel good. In the end, we’re left wondering—what about us? And that’s right. What about us? When do we stop sacrificing our own wellness to protect others? Speaking up when you’re uncomfortable is one of the key ways to set your own boundaries.
Weed Out Your Feed
Social media can be a blessing, and a curse if we aren’t smart with how we use it. Sometimes setting healthy boundaries lies within clearing out our feed of all that harms us. This means getting rid of the people we may constantly compare ourselves too, clearing out the gossiping blogs, or shutting it down when it seems to consume all our time. We should never give our socials more attention or power than we give ourselves. So, it safe to limit how much we use social media at times and decipher what we want to positively gain from it. Scrolling without a purpose is just wasting time.
You don’t have to go out every weekend just because your girls are. Your alone-time and comfort are necessary when maintaining your mental health. Going out when we don’t feel like it can be draining, and it can put a damper on the evening meant for fun and fellowship. You don’t have to say yes to every outing, and you aren’t a drag if you feel like being wrapped under your blankets for a weekend. Spending time in your own space is getting your rent’s worth every month.
Apologize For What
For years women have been overly apologetic when they feel they’ve said something with too much passion, seriousness, or sadness. Why are we constantly apologizing for our feelings as if they are invalid? When you say sorry for expressing yourself, it’s like you’ve made a mistake of showing who you really are. Own yourself in all your glory this year, and when you catch yourself apologizing for stating how you feel, what you don’t like, or what you’d rather be doing—give yourself a mental thump to the head.
Be Intentional or Be Gone
When you welcome others into your life, you owe it to yourself to state what you want, what you expect, and what you will not tolerate. You also deserve to know what their intentions are with you, whether it be a romantic partner, business partner, or new friend. We don’t have time for confusion or hurt in this new year, and we want to prevent them in any way that we can. Demanding others to be upfront with you about what they want and informing them on what you deserve can change the dynamics of your relationships forever.
Setting boundaries can be tough, especially if you are used to taking care of others around you. Yet, there comes a time in everyone’s lives where they have to make themselves a priority instead of an option. Your health and comfort are necessary, but your will to please is no-where as urgent as your will to live as freely and healthy as you can.