For Women Only!

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If you have followed my blog for any length of time then you know that there are certain themes that I will write on time and time again; hopefully expressing thoughts in fresh ways. The “rule of seven” tells us that a person generally needs to hear a concept at least 7 times before really grabbing ahold of the concept and applying it to their lives.  So please indulge me as I take another stab at a truth that I know to be very, very important!

LADIES!  I give you permission today to take as good care of yourself as you do for all the others in your lives!

As a young woman, I was a pastor’s wife, friend, sister, daughter, church volunteer, school volunteer, house-keeper, cook, and mama to two active boys; how I wish I had been told how impacting it would have been if I had figured out some way to establish self care  in those days! So often I was exhausted, unhealthy, and even a bit isolated in my closest relationships….I was just so busy.

Let me explain Self-Care a little better:

“Self care includes any intentional action an individual takes to care for their physical, mental, relational, and emotional health.”
Good food, water, exercise, and good sleep patterns are  key to maintaining vibrant energy and outlook.
Life giving friends, healthy boundaries, quality support,  and cup-filling activities help to keep our emotional health strong.
Having proven ways to relax, taking time to journal thoughts and concerns, growing in the area of faith, listening to positive information rather than focusing on the negative, and learning to nap are all elements that support sustainable mental wellness.
Building good friendships, gathering with other women in your season of life, enjoying “girl time” where you can laugh deeply, and having a “posse” of women who you know have your back, strengthens our sense of connectedness and relational health.
Here’s an action step:
If you look at your calendar, personal and professional, and you don’t see yourself represented there on any given day–it’s time!
* a spa day
* a girl’s night out
* a nap
*time at the gym
* time with God
*time with a good book
*hiking in the great outdoors
*crafting
* and saying no to some good things to use your greatest energy for the BEST things.
10WaysToSayNo         ( just for you)
Permission Granted Again. ( you are worth it )
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Some Relationships are Worth Extra Effort~

 

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Do you hate conflict? I sure do!! I used to run from it for many years; never expressing myself, wanting to please and appease! But I have learned two things:

1.  It’s so important to address challenges/disagreements in relationships.

2.  It’s so important to be willing to be humble to “not be right” in order to maintain relationships that DO matter.

In my life I am clearly aware that I have friendships/relationships that I want to, well, last forever.  There are times, even in those key relationships, that there may be disagreements.  How do we navigate some of those challenges without losing the friendship? Well, I am still learning.

There are times when it’s important to set boundaries on toxic or untrustworthy relationships…but there are also times when we might want to walk away from a relationship where there has been a challenge and yet, we know in our hearts we want them in our life!

Questions we can ask ourselves in these instances are these:

1. Though there may be a conflict right now, would I be saddened to lose my relationship because of our present challenge?

2.  Could there be a bridge built in our relationship if I humble myself and try to understand the heart and season of my friend?

3. Can I extend grace and am I willing to move forward?

Relationships are so important, take care, wisdom, and a humble heart to navigate~~ but they are worth it!!!

Proverbs 17:17A friend loves at all times, And a brother is born for adversity.

John 15:13“Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends.

Is it alright to have Boundaries?

 

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I’m a people person.  People have always mattered to me; even as a child I felt great empathy and protection for people around me.  Some would say that this is a good trait and I might too.  But love for people without boundaries can create unforeseen challenges and relational mistakes.

Let me add another layer to this discussion by saying that I am also a Christ-follower; wanting to be more like Him each day. Also, take into consideration that I was a Pastor’s wife for over 10 years and truly felt that the right answer to any request had to be “yes.” Somehow setting boundaries with people seems unloving; maybe even unkind.  Right?   Well, that’s what I felt for many years.

Some behavioural styles have an easier time saying “no”, I’m sorry I cannot help”, or “this is not a good time”; while other behavioural styles feel awful if they ever have to say “no”.  I have always admired those who have a stronger resolve with their boundaries because it is something that has taken me years to learn!!

Throughout my life time I have found myself in situations with people where I knew I wasn’t the cause and I knew I couldn’t fix the situation.  I have found myself pouring hours and hours of time into people I “hoped” would get healthier only to realize they are content with their choices.  I have protected people only to find that they were the antagonist in their situations.  I have counseled with people who later turned and said ” I was actually the problem.”

I don’t have any resentment towards those situations because I had put myself there; and I have learned so much from them over the past 10 years!

Setting boundaries helps us to manage our time better; truly investing our time and talents where we should and saying no to those situations or people who would, knowingly, drain our bandwidth to a point of “empty”!

Setting boundaries keeps us safe from engaging in emotional situations that we can’t, or shouldn’t, get caught up in.  We’ve all done it.  We’ve all found ourselves wondering “how did I get involved in this?”  Having quality relational boundaries will help us to have a better filter to know when we “should” step in and when we “should not”.  We can always pray for the situation.

Setting boundaries with our finances or personal items can help us to appropriately help other while not becoming enablers.  Consistently bailing people out, loaning money, cars, or household items can easily create resentment over time and ultimately harm the relationship we are trying to assist! Certainly there are times when sharing what we have is entirely appropriate, but there are clearly times when it is more loving to say “no”.

As a Life Coach, I have had so many conversations with amazing woman who will say, “I just can’t say No”, I don’t want to disappoint anyone”, “They’ll think I don’t care”, or “if I don’t bail them out, what will happen to them?”.  It’s hard to set boundaries.

But~ Boundaries are so necessary.

It would not be possible to enjoy healthy relationships without the existence of personal boundaries, or without our willingness to communicate them honestly with others. Setting personal boundaries can preserve the integrity of your relationships, ward off resentment, and ultimately create environments for honest conversations.

Most people are surprised when I show them from the Bible examples of Jesus setting boundaries and practicing personal soul care.  I would encourage you to read the Article ” Jesus Set Boundaries” to help you re-think about the boundaries in your own life.

http://www.soulshepherding.org/1998/07/jesus-set-boundaries/

I know this can be a challenging topic ~~ but it’s really important.