With summertime in full swing, it’s beginning to feel like this year is flying by! We’ve almost made it to July, after experiencing a spring season that seemed to last all year.
With the rise in summer temperatures, we often see the rise in the demands placed on our lives. Perhaps you’re placing physical demands on yourself to eat right, or with the kiddos home for the summer, you’re feeling the pressure to fill the gaps between rescheduled parties and canceled summer camps, and then, of course, there’s also the demand you may feel as a leader in your church or career. If you’re like us, perhaps you’ve been spending the past few months working from home rather than the office building, making it harder to strike a balance in life and set clear boundaries.
Today we want to offer you a little encouragement. First, when your path seems to be leading you in twenty different directions, and it starts to feel like your life is falling out of balance, remember what Proverbs 3:4-6 tells us: “Then you will find favor and high regard with God and people. Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not rely on your own understanding; in all your ways know him, and he will make your paths straight” (CSB).
We know it can be challenging, but the first step in setting healthy boundaries in your life begins with setting aside time in prayer and the Word.
We chatted with some of our team members who could offer a variety of perspectives (some are single; some are young moms; some are small group leaders—but all are women just like you!) and asked them to share ways they are setting healthy boundaries in their daily life.
Here’s how our team is setting boundaries with their time:
- Set clear work hours and be disciplined in stopping when it’s stopping time.
- Working from home? Get up and get dressed as if you were leaving the house.
- Use a planner or calendar app to schedule time for activities like Bible study, taking a break, going for a walk, or spending time with your family. If you’re using an app be sure to turn notifications on so you will get reminders when it’s time to take a break or start a new project.
- Are you a parent? Make strategic plans for childcare or know you will work when naptime begins.
- Don’t be afraid to ask for help. If you’re a parent, see if a family member or friend can help with childcare for a few hours. Feeling overwhelmed with work or church responsibilities? Talk openly with your supervisor and ask them to help you set priorities for your work.
- Have a space designated for specific activities. Perhaps this includes a prayer nook in your favorite corner or a workspace in your spare bedroom. This will help your mind differentiate the purpose of each space in your home and help you stay focused on the activity at hand—that way you are not distracted by work when eating dinner.
- Reduce distractions by turning off the TV or finding a location away from the housework while you are preparing your Bible study lesson or working on an important project for work.
- If you feel yourself starting to feel stressed and overwhelmed, turn on your favorite Christian music or listen to the Bible on audio while you work.
- Set a time to turn off your screens each day and focus on being present before the Lord, with yourself, and with your family.
We know it can be hard, but most of us feel the need for clearer boundaries in our lives or even just the freedom to say “no.”
What are some of the ways you set boundaries in your life? Tell us in the comments.