Years ago, I used to overextend myself emotionally, financially and more. Finally, when I had nothing left to give to myself or the people closest to me, I knew I needed to make some changes. I decided to put boundaries up around every area of my life. The purpose of the boundaries are to ensure that I am living my life and not just going from one event after another. Today, I want to encourage you to establish boundaries. It is okay to say no to other people and yes to yourself. If you are clueless as to where to start, I would highly recommend a great book called Boundaries. I did the book with a group and it changed my life.
So how do you start making boundaries? First, I would recommend take an honest inventory of your life. Are you living your best life right now? Are you always tired? Are you always feeling emotionally and financially depleted? Life is not meant to be like this. There can be seasons of this but not a lifestyle. Now that you have been honest, I would recommend you ask a trusted friend to walk with you as you place up boundaries in your life. This friend should be someone you can confide in and who can hold you accountable in love. When you begin to make changes to better your life, everyone will not be supportive.
Your heart: Everyone is not deserving of your love. We should respect others but your heart belongs to you. Sometimes, we are manipulated into believing we are in a friendship or relationship and it is not just true. A friendship or relationship is not one-sided. It takes two to be in a friendship or relationship. Love comes in all forms such as family, friends and significant others. You can choose who to love.
Your finances: Your money is earned from your hard work. There is nothing wrong with being generous but you have to get honest with yourself. Does someone only contact when you they need a bill paid? Do you have that one person who always forgets their money during a planned outing? Do you have someone who tries to convince you that your non relationship warrants relationship treatment? Many years ago I would pay bills, buy expensive meals and more for people who had no intention of being my friend or boyfriend. They found an ATM in me and used me. I allowed it and I know that no true friendship or relationship can be bought.
Your time: Time is so precious and priceless. We cannot get back time and we have to be mindful of that. Now, I know there are seasons when we do not have a lot of time to do anything but work and sleep. That should not be your lifestyle. Also, you have make sure you are investing in people, places and things that benefit you. If someone annoys you or does not add value to your life, why would you open up time in your schedule for them? Also, you need to make time for yourself. It is okay to take time for yourself. It can as long as you would like. You are worth the investment.
Your talent: All of us have gifts and talents. Some of us are blessed to make a living using our gift and talents. I understand about doing a favor but spending hours doing something for free that someone would otherwise pay for is not right. Your time is your money. You can give the family and friends discount but free is not the way to go. I used to spend hours of researching and collecting info for people for free. I used to plan events for free (sometimes it was a gift for close friends). I am just saying be mindful how you give away your talents.
I wish you a life of balance and boundaries that is full of true love and rest.