Feeling busy, busy, busy with everything but your creative work? Are you not completing projects you’ve committed to?
It could be time to shore up boundaries that are easily breached. This is especially true for women, for whom connection and relationship can seem more important than our own work.
Honoring boundaries feels good
I had to create some serious boundaries last winter in order to focus on finishing my novel. Saying no in order to say yes to my work was uncomfortable at first.
Then it started to feel good. The more I focused on my work, the less concerned I was about refusing requests. People understood that I needed to stave off distractions during this time.
I sense you squirming and even protesting. ‘I can’t say no! I don’t want to be rude.’ We fear that saying ‘no’ makes us look like a bitch.
But here’s the secret: the people who cherish you will respect you more for it.
But when we let others violate our boundaries, we permit them to leach away our vital creative energy. You wouldn’t sit calmly by while someone stuck his hand in your purse and took whatever he wanted, would you?
Treat your time, energy and attention with as much mindfulness and protectiveness as you do your physical assets.
The worst thing about giving in for others’ sake is the awful sense of self-betrayal we feel when we allow our precious energy to be drained away because of weak commitments.
How firm are your boundaries? Share what works for you in a comment below.
Next week, I’ll write about specific boundaries and how to shore them up.
In the meantime, practice noticing which boundaries are working and which ones are not.