Your boundaries with yourself

Commit to build trust.

We’ve been talking about boundaries with other people for the past few weeks. Let’s talk about boundaries with ourselves.

What this looks like is keeping commitments to ourselves or keeping our word to ourselves.

If we are the keepers of our own boundaries with others and we take the actions to maintain those boundaries, we can do the same with ourselves.

We may want to set a boundary for ourselves around the following:

Boundary between work and home (for those who work from home)

Boundary for when we look at or check our phones

Boundary for how much time we spend on social media

Boundary around time spent watching shows (Netflix, Hulu, Prime, HBO Max, etc.)

Boundary around how much sugar we eat

Boundary around how much caffeine or alcohol we drink

Boundary around how much inactive time we have – which means adding more active time

Boundary for when we choose to go to sleep every night

We can make plans for all these boundaries. What creates boundary violations with ourselves is when we don’t stick to the plan. 

We worked two more hours than we planned to. 

We have one more drink than we planned to. 

We scrolled on social media for 45 minutes longer than we planned to.

We ate two cookies instead of one. 

We went to bed at midnight instead of 10:30pm. 

We didn’t exercise like we planned to. 

Many of us are very good at keeping commitments to others, especially if we don’t want to disappoint them or let them down. What happens when we don’t keep our commitments to others? They may feel let down and disappointed. We may feel guilty or disappointed in ourselves. 

What happens when we don’t keep our commitments to ourselves? We are the ones who feel BOTH things–let down by ourselves AND guilty or disappointed in ourselves. We get a double whammy. 

When we don’t follow through with our commitments to ourselves, we erode our trust with ourselves. This makes us less likely to even make plans for ourselves to commit to because we might think, “What’s the point? I probably won’t do it anyway.” 

To build trust with ourselves, we can practice keeping commitments to ourselves with compassion. We make the plan (the boundary) and we take the actions to maintain the plan (keeping the boundary). If we miss the mark once, we don’t just give up. We give ourselves grace and practice taking action again. 

It feels good to keep a commitment. The more we do it, the more trust we build with ourselves. And that can have positive effects on everything we do. 

Your turn: What plans (boundaries) do you want to put into place for yourself? Are you willing to be committed to being the keeper of your plans (boundaries)? How would your life be different if you kept your commitment to maintaining your boundaries with yourself? 

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