Boundaries and resolutions

CakeWed 24th January 2018

During the preparation for a second podcast with Christine Wild and Lori Bisbey about the boundaries, it occurred to me that resolutions are time bound boundaries related to our behaviour or wished for behaviour. I’m not alone in being in the habit of seeing Winter as a time for reflection and the flick over of the clock to 00:01 on the first of January seems to be a very obvious time in which to reflect on the actions and behaviours that we want to let go of or do more of in the year ahead.

As someone who has struggled with food in the past, as well as being an advocate for intuition based eating, I am not making any diet related plans though I will definitely be tuning into my body and its appetites more as well as drinking more water. I am also committing to getting back into regular exercise. In December, illness made me unable to exercise for a few weeks and so I’m feeling happy to be well and able to look after my body more consciously again now. I’m making an effort to exercise more often and more consistently as I know that that both improves my mood and helps me tune into my body better.

Many of the areas I’m bringing my attention to in my personal life are related to boundaries. Boundaries around how we interact with others as well as ourselves are key to emotional well-being.

A boundary is a limit, a framework for how we manage our relationship with things that can be both internal and external. Some of the boundaries we have can be too loose and others too hard. It is about finding a way to be aware of these and to make them both firm yet flexible, especially when it comes to parenting and/or interacting with children.

January can be a good time to reflect on what your own areas of strength and weakness are when it comes to boundaries and to bring some awareness to this before taking actions to make changes if needed.

So many of the emotional habits and behaviours we have are ones that served us well in an earlier environment (our childhood or young adulthood or throughout) and yet, as we age and go through different stages of life, it is important to reflect upon these habits and carefully assess whether they are still helpful. Reflecting, with kindness for ourselves, upon how we tend to behave and bringing some awareness to that so that we are able to make choices more carefully is important. . It is so important to set judgement aside and to take a calm and clear look at how we behave and to consider how that might be otherwise if it does not serve us. Making more conscious choices makes it more likely that we will make ones which serve our current needs better.

I am choosing to focus my energies in 2019 on letting go of habits and behaviours that are no longer serving me. Being aware of the hyper-critical narrative in my mind makes me more able to ignore it, having carefully chosen values means I act based on those (most of the time!) rather than doing whatever my current low or high mood is telling me I might feel like doing.

I have planned out key work tasks and have a loose set of goals for the next six moths. This is different to how I usually micro-manage my time and my schedule. It feels a lot more flexible and also appropriate given the multiple projects I’m working on.

I have made a conscious decision to take everything a little slower so that I’m more able to notice my auto-pilot (unconscious) responses and reactions and to make changes as and when I need to.

These are the only “resolutions” I have made. More of a framework, they friend me of what is important as well as keeping things loose enough for me to be responsive to what is happening with me in the now.

Listen to the podcast to hear more on all of this plus other insights into relationships and the self from Dr Lori Beth Bisbey, Christine Wild and I.