When I say ‘boundaries,’ I’m not talking about that time your cousin was addicted to some drug and you refused to give her money to buy more, or that time a guy said he wanted to take you home from the bar and you said “No thanks, douchelord.” Those are examples of boundaries in action, but they’re pretty extreme and obvious. Of COURSE you can stand up for yourself in dramatic situations like those.
Boundaries are the everyday practices you implement that teach people how to treat you.
Boundaries can be as simple as not answering your phone after 8pm, choosing to return voicemails within 48 hours instead of 1 or 2, or refusing to eat at McDonald’s because of its treatment of workers.
Everyday practices that teach people how to treat you look a lot like how you respond to e-mails and phone calls, when you let screens into your life, how much time you work, how much time you take off, how much influence you let others’ opinions have on you, and whether or not you’re willing to bend over backwards in any given situation.
You’re teaching people how to treat you.
Right now. All the time.
Boundaries make it easier to get people to treat you well.
When you get a grip on boundaries, you’re growing more satisfied with your life as it now stands. Because asking for ten minutes alone before you come downstairs to make breakfast is a small but relevant change, right?
Likewise, taking Sunday mornings off to lie in bed and eat pancakes will cost you less than a dollar, but you’ll appreciate that time more than the entirety of the rest of the week, combined, if you’ve been aching for a break.
Drawing boundaries around your time can be tricky, but it’s a necessary part of making space for good shit to appear in your life. You’ll need to prioritize some things while de-prioritizing others in order to get what you want.
You’ll have to be really, incredibly specific about what you’d like to accomplish in order to get it.
To get started with boundary-making in a simple and quick way, just complete these three sentences.
In order to create _______________, I have to give up ________________. (Hello,
To launch ____________________ in the next few months, I can’t give a shit about
Committing to _______________________ means I have to stop _____________
What needs to be given up, ignored, committed to, stopped, or launched?
When will you get paid, dammit?