We're headed into the holiday season.
Setting and maintaining appropriate boundaries can help make the holidays more enjoyable.
What Are Boundaries?
Boundaries are physical, mental, and/or emotional limits- the dividing line- we create to protect ourselves from being controlled, used, or mistreated. Boundary violators could be family, friends, co-workers, or anyone that seeks to meet their needs at our expense.
According to Marvin Kittnel in his article "Why It Is Important to Have Boundaries?" he lists three types of boundaries: healthy, rigid, and porous.
Healthy boundaries are not compromising your values for others, appropriately sharing personal information, valuing your own opinion, and accepting other's rights to have boundaries too.
Rigid boundary examples- avoiding close relationships, not asking for help, detaching, and distancing yourself to prevent rejection.
Porous boundaries are oversharing too much personal information, difficulty saying 'no,' and tolerating disrespect, misuse, or abuse.
Here are three easy tips for setting boundaries during the holidays.
K.I.S.S. Keep it Simple, Sweetie. This year, of course, we're dealing with a pandemic. Limit travel. Google's Meet is a free way to have real-time meetings. Start new traditions.
Say no. I know this is hard or challenging. But there's also an epidemic of stress and stress-related diseases. Saying no in an appropriate peaceful way is a first step in setting boundaries and limiting stress in our lives.
Be kind and empathic when possible. However, some people have been used to getting their own way- usually through manipulation for so long they just won't "get it" when we set boundaries for our health. And they probably never will.
Remember: setting boundaries isn't about 'getting back at someone.' Or teaching them a lesson. It's about doing for ourselves what we need to do.
Also seek appropriate help as needed.
Are Boundaries Biblical?
Did you know, the Old Testament is full of verses on boundaries. God was very clear that no one should move boundary markers. (Proverbs 22:28 & 23:10 are just a few).
Jesus even set boundaries. He set limits with the crowd following Him (Luke 5:15-16). He rested as needed (John 4:6). Took naps (Mark 4:38). Ate when he was hungry (Matthew 9:10-13).
Carpe Diem (make the most of the present time)
Here are some steps you can do -- right now.
When you share what you need or when you say 'no,' you can be kind, firm, and calm.
Setting and maintaining boundaries takes practice and repetition.
Always pray first and meditate on the scriptures below.
"A soft and gentle and thoughtful answer turns away wrath, But harsh and painful and careless words stir up anger." - Proverbs 15:1 (AMP)
"Be pleasant and hold their interest when you speak the message. Choose your words carefully and be ready to give answers to anyone who asks questions." - Colossians 4:6 (CEV)
To help you get started…
You can do this. It may be challenging but it will be worth it.
If you'd like my help, reach out. I'm here for you. For a limited time*, I'm offering four weekly 45-minute 1:1 private coaching sessions for only $25 each session.
Click here to make an appointment for a complementary Discovery Session to get started.
*This offer is good for only the first 10 people who sign up and does not include any course material or other programs that I offer. Offer to signup expires November 30, 2020 at midnight ET.
Here’s to your health!