Do you feel it already?
It’s only Tuesday evening, but you are beginning to feel some of the pressure, anxiety and stress of the holiday season. And I for one have decided to not participate in that side of the season! It’s time to talk BOUNDARIES! We all know we should stick to them, but we seem to let all of that wisdom fall to the wayside when it comes to family, food and gift giving!
What is a Boundary?
According to https://www.merriam-webster.com/, a boundary is:
something that indicates or fixes a limit or extent
something that points out or shows a limit or end: a dividing line
Are you Sturdy in your personal Boundaries?
I am MUCH better at holding firm to my boundaries, but this is a very NEW concept for me. Growing up, personal boundaries were not emphasized as a child. I’m sure you’ve heard the phrase, “Children should be seen and not heard.”, right? Well, that was a real thing for me growing up. While the words were not explicitly spoken, it was understood that as a child, your opinion did not matter. And if you spoke up, you were labeled rude, disrespectful and unruly. What child would want those labels or consequences!
“Focus on how others feel vs myself”
As a result of this subconscious programming, I decided that I needed to focus on how other people felt rather than how I felt. That my feelings were second to those of everyone else – especially family members.
Not feeling like a human or as though my feelings mattered: When your voice is silenced as a child, it begins to change the trajectory of your divine path. You trust that the adults in your life know best and you surrender your will to theirs – in hopes that they have your best interests in mind. But many times, those same adults who are supposed to guide and lead you towards your greater good and purpose have their own issues from childhood that has never been addressed.
“Pain, loss, lack of respect as a result – of myself or others”
As a result of all this muting, I experienced many seasons of pain, loss of the intimacy and love I craved and lack a respect – for myself and others. Without the proper direction in how to express my unique desires and needs as a child, I was unable to fully experience the joy and satisfaction of healthy relationships and communication as an adult. Does any of this sound familiar to you?
So, back to our subject: Boundaries around the Holidays!
We are entering the season of the year that can bring excitement to your days or a sense of dread and anxiety as you prepare to be with family and friends. Wherever you may be on that spectrum, I wanted to share a few suggestions that can help you maintain your boundaries while enjoying the ones you love:
MENTAL Well-Being and Boundaries
Mental well-being is so important to maintain!
If you tense up at the thought of seeing someone or you are already rehearsing the answer to questions from that one family member, you may want to reconsider attending this gathering. The stress you are creating within your mind isn’t worth any amount of food or gifts.
PHYSICAL Well-Being and Boundaries
Remember your personal health goals…
If you are desiring to release weight or make a major shift in the way you eat your food and move your body, it may be a good idea to come to Thanksgiving already full so you can enjoy conversations with family rather than carbs with regret later.
FINANCIAL Well-Being and Boundaries
Stick to a spending plan during the holidays and maintain your financial peace!
If your family is not located nearby and you are already strapped with bills and other financial commitments, do NOT overextend yourself just so you can make someone else feel good about you being with the family or buying gifts. Unless they will pay your way, make the wise decision to stay close to home, or to set a strict limit on what you will spend. And make that decision early!
SPIRITUAL Well-Being and Boundaries
If at any moment, you feel condemned, not enough, or devalued, it’s time to leave. That is the Spirit within you nudging you and reminding you of your worthiness of love, respect and joy. And that environment is NOT the place for you.
You have the power to CHOOSE
You have the power to choose how you feel this holiday season! Enjoy a great meal with family and friends on Thanksgiving! Share a thoughtful, intentional gift with the ones you love during the holidays! And while you are engaged in those activities, remember these 2 things:
First, let your YES be YES and your NO be NO.
And finally, choose to feel good about yourself and your actions over people pleasing no matter what!
Gratitude. Abundance. Love. Peace. Joy. Family…That’s what it’s all about anyway, right?