Now that many of us are living, working, and balancing families, relationships, and independence all in the same space -- boundaries are more important than ever.
If we let every aspect of our busy lives run together in one space, we’ll be living in a mess of anxiety and chaos. Work will fill every crevice of space we offer it — relationships will start to feel smothering (if they don’t already), and connection to yourself will fall by the wayside
If you’re working from home, there needs to be a physical boundary between your life and your work. You no longer have that morning and evening commute to check you in and out of work mode. Or that happy hour after work where you aren’t checking your work email. If you let it, work will consume your entire home life.
If you have the space in your home, set up a room specifically for work and leave work in that room. If possible you should separate work from the spaces that you eat, relax, and sleep. Don’t let work infiltrate the other spaces of your home. If you don’t have the space, try to keep a physical boundary in place like working at a different table or closing up your laptop and putting it away when the workday is over.
In addition to physical boundaries, it’s important to keep mental boundaries in place. When you physically step away from work you need to also mentally step away from work. Just as your physical body needs time to recharge, so does your mind.
Stick to a routine. I’m not saying your routine needs to be the height of fitness and health but try to find some consistency in your home life. There needs to be a clear signal to your brain when work is starting and stopping. Whether it’s working out in the morning before sitting down to work or having a massive glass of wine when work is over, let your brain recognize the signal of work starting and work stopping.
My morning routine goes something like this:
My routine is simple and pretty dull but it allows me to find consistency in my life. When my coffee is brewing my brain feels calm and peaceful because it knows that it will be getting a nice relaxing meditation soon. When I step into my office, my brain knows that it’s time to start diving into my work.
Emotional boundaries can be tricky. If you’re living in close quarters with family or friends, it’s really important to put up emotional boundaries to ensure you are not taking on more than you can handle.
Emotional boundaries involve holding space for the ones around you without taking on the negative thoughts or feelings that they are projecting into your home. It’s important to know when external emotions are affecting you and taking time to recenter and recharge.
Meditation can be really helpful with emotional boundaries. I recommend Insight Timer free meditations for releasing other’s emotions while also holding space for them to share and feel safe.
Mental and physical boundaries take discipline. It’s easy to be lazy and neglect boundaries especially at a time like this where everything feels uncertain and out of control.
Implementing boundaries gives us some control over our life. At a time when we feel so out-of-control, it’s important to prioritize your boundaries.