Setting Better Boundaries
In one of our previous articles, Rachel Randolph highlighted the skill of reframing to gain clarity on your vision and to better maintain your mission. In this post, she talks about what good is having clarity on your vision and mission if you never have enough time or energy to execute on it?
Boundary Setting & Self Talk
The second half of upholding your values and supporting your mission involves maintaining boundaries, which helps promote less stress, builds more trust in relationships, and better self-esteem. Yet, why is it still so difficult to establish and maintain them?
To begin, it’s important to look inward and ask yourself why this might be something that’s personally difficult to do. Often, when we are uncomfortable with something happening in our lives, we may try to push through it, or ignore it altogether. Throughout this process it’s critical to remember one very important aspect: boundaries have nothing to do with other people. They have everything to do with internal alignment and strengthening your own voice. First and foremost, setting a boundary means prioritizing communication with yourself about what your needs are.
When addressing a struggle with boundaries, first take a look at your relationship to them. Does your internal dialogue ever sound something like:
- “I’m not sure why but it doesn’t feel right.”
- “I’ll feel like I let them down if I don’t do this.”
- “They didn’t like me/it when I did this so I’ll never do it again”
If any of this sounds familiar, know that you’re not alone.
Hopefully this is where you can begin to see that boundaries have nothing to do with anyone else, but instead inform the perspective on your own needs.
Setting Better Boundaries
So, how can we better listen to ourselves and gauge when we need to establish better boundaries? Pay close attention to times when you feel pressured to please someone, or fear the consequences for speaking your mind. This is your internal system letting you know that something is off. It’s also a useful tool for staying in alignment in both our personal and work lives.
Of course, establishing boundaries as business owners comes with its own set of stressors. Bills, employees, networking — you likely have a multitude of things pulling you in a variety of different directions, and it’s easy to feel like each of them is the top priority. Here’s an important truth: they are not. You are your first priority.
Common Boundary-Setting Blockers
If you’re struggling to set healthy boundaries there are things you can do to better address it. Here’s a few frequent roadblocks you may encounter when attempting to draw certain lines.
Do you struggle with clarity on what the boundary should be?
Work on self-reflection and self-awareness of your current situations.
Do you struggle with saying no?
Address how it benefits yourself and others for you to say no to what you’re not in alignment with.
Do you struggle with fear of the consequences for putting up a boundary?
Remember that boundaries are your individual needs, not anyone else’s, and to be patient with others when communicating.
When you improve your relationship with your boundaries, you improve your relationship with yourself. You address your fears, understand your needs, and build on your self-confidence.
The more you practice setting boundaries that better support your needs and values, the easier it becomes to say no. Boundaries create and maintain you as an individual. With this change in focus, you empower yourself to take the reins back in your life.
The question then becomes, are you able to be honest with yourself about your needs in business and in life? Are you willing to put your needs at the forefront of your life? When we address them from the inside out, boundaries are liberation from all that takes from you.
Claim it back!
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