Why Setting Boundaries is More Important than Setting a Schedule.
Without boundaries set in place, you wouldn’t be able to get in the right mind set to even create a clear schedule.
Planning out your day through a schedule is a well-known way to alleviate transitioning time between different tasks. If done correctly, a schedule is your treasure map. It’s your blue-print from the un-done to the promise land.
But without having boundaries set in place, a schedule is useless.
For example, you could take a glance at your schedule to see that you have a meeting set for 10AM, but if a co-worker strikes up a conversation near your work area at the same time, you could find yourself getting stuck in a conversation causing you to accidentally miss a meeting.
Boundaries- a crucial life skill.
Boundaries take time to master. Setting limitations allows for us to be in control of our time and it even assists with boosting self-esteem.
According to a recent study, the same areas of our brain that fire off when we are in real danger fires off when we feel others are invading our personal space. Being in an environment where your boundaries are constantly tested will raise high levels of cortisol in our brains, a stress inducing chemical, causing us to be irritable and stressed.
Setting boundaries is a form of self-care because they make us feel empowered.
In addition, setting boundaries both in the workplace and at home is a crucial step to productivity and overall well being. According to recent research published by the Journal of Business Psychology, individuals who practice setting boundaries reported feeling 72% more satisfied.
What are Boundaries?
So, what does it mean to set boundaries you ask? It simply means you are taking a stance to honor your commitment to your schedule or to your personal mission statement. Anyone or anything that is impeding on your north star or poking your bubble should be aware of such boundaries.
From above example with your co-worker asking a numerous amount of questions, instead of getting distracted, it would be best to honor your known prior commitment and verbalize that right now is not the best time for this. Vocalizing a boundary ends up being a win-win for all parties in the long run. The person on the other end of the meeting is pleased as the meeting starts on time, you are more energized for honoring your commitment, and your co-worker will understand and hopefully remember to respect their own boundaries.
You may find some scenarios that cause you to get uncomfortable before honoring a boundary. For example, if someone is having a conversation that is too loud and you can’t hear yourself think. You may want to politely ask if they could lower the volume a bit, so you could work in a more productive environment.
What happens though when your boss is the one stepping over your boundaries? For example, your job is between the hours of 9AM- 5PM and is non-emergency related. You find your boss to be messaging you at inappropriate hours of the night about work-related questions. How do you honor your boundary of self-care? Do you respond because it’s your boss and feel horrible about it later? Do you not reply and hope they get the hint? Do you respond that you are in bed and will resume non-emergency work related questions in the office?
In a recent Instagram poll I posted within my IG stories, I found the following results from my following:
How you honor your boundary is completely up to you. Keep in mind though, if you are aware of what your boundary is and decide not to honor it, this eventually will lead you onto the path of burnout.
If you are an entrepreneur and you work for yourself, you may think you are off the hook because you don’t have to work with a manager. However, your boundary game must be through the roof when running your own business because friends and family alike will assume your time is more flexible.
Action step: Think of the last time you felt a co-worker, boss, family member, or friend impeded on your productivity or zone of flow. What boundaries can you put in place to protect your productivity? Write them out and refer to them when needed.