Why boundaries are not just important, but necessary

When we think of boundaries, you might think of a boundary that separates or divides something.  Today, I’m talking about healthy boundaries that allow us to protect ourselves and our energy in ALL areas of our life.  It’s your way of saying, “I’ll accept this…” and “I won’t accept this…”.  It’s understanding and knowing your limits.

Before I understood the importance of boundaries, I really didn’t understand what a healthy boundary meant, let alone applied them to my own life.  In my twenties, I remember being in a constant state of giving so much of my energy to everyone and anyone that I often felt depleted and drained and really didn’t understand why. 

I thought I was being nice and helping people who were coming to me either for advice or asking for my help, yet why was I leaving those interactions feeling drained?  Since much of my work and by nature, I’m open and giving with others, it was a game changer for me once I realized that boundaries weren’t just important but necessary. 

Once they were put in place (and still are), it allowed me to remain grounded in my own energy and FEEL like I still had energy for me while still being able to give energy to other things in my life that were important.  It also demonstrated that while I’m able to connect and be open with others as I always do, there’s a boundary I’ve placed for myself that I am now respecting.

Boundaries are not the same as blocks or walls people armor themselves with.  So, to be clear, a boundary is meant to be a healthy often, invisible barrier that allows you to preserve and protect your energy and yourself.  You’re respecting yourself and showing others what you will and will not tolerate. 

If you’re unsure of how to apply healthy boundaries to your life, take note of some of these simple practices and things you can keep in mind to help protect yourself and your energy.

  • Boundaries can be applied to ALL areas of your life; not necessarily at work or in your relationships.  Where do you feel you need to put a boundary or have more boundaries in place?
  • What are the boundaries you want to put in place and with who?  For example, the boundaries you might set at work with your colleagues might look different from those you set with your loved ones and friends.
  • Ask yourself what it is you need?  Is it more time?  Energy?  Power?  Respect? If you feel like there’s something you need more of and not getting, that could be a sign that you may want to create a boundary for yourself where your energy might be leaking or given away.
  • Set the intention before heading into that coffee with your friend, that meeting at work, etc.  Especially in the beginning as you’re just implementing this practice, think about what your intention is ahead of time until it becomes second nature.

One of my favorite writers and motivational speakers, Gabby Bernstein shares what healthy boundaries (2:37 min watch) look like for her. Take note of how she explains that while having a healthy boundary in place, she can still be kind and open.

Boundaries are for anyone who can use that invisible barrier in order to protect the most important thing you can control – YOUR energy.  You are in charge of where it goes and who you give it to.  While it may only be required in one area of your life, consider putting those healthy boundaries in place to serve your needs, whatever they may look like for you.

I’d love to hear from you!

Where in your life have you applied healthy boundaries?

Share in the comments below and let me know how boundaries have helped you in your life.

With so much love,

Lisa xo

Do you struggle with making a decision?

How many of you have struggled with making a decision?  I’m not talking about the simple ones like, what to make for dinner or where to go to eat with your loved one, although I know the “what do you feel like eating tonight?” decision can often take up the entire evening to decide. 😊  I’m referring to the really important decisions.  Making a career change.  Health-related decisions.  Quitting your job.  Selling your house and moving, etc.

More often than not, when we’re not clear about who we are and how that aligns to our values, it’s easy to rely on outside sources to help with making a decision.  Now, I’m not saying you should never consider outside sources to help you with reaching a decision.  In fact, I encourage it when you’ve reached a point when you know something needs to change and need help in considering all the factors that will help you in reaching a decision.

But when you’ve allowed too many outside sources consume your thoughts where it clouds your judgment and influences how YOU feel about the direction you should go in, then something’s off.

When we’re relying on outside sources instead of our own voice within, we can often find ourselves making decisions that are not in alignment with what’s right for us.

So, how do you learn to get more comfortable with listening to your OWN voice when making an important decision?

A couple of questions that I often reflect on which have been helpful when I need to reach a decision are the following:

  • How does this decision FEEL?

Many times, the idea of making a change can foster feelings of fear (Fear of the unknown, fear of not liking it, fear of making the wrong choice, fear of disappointing someone, etc. etc.)  But fear can also be confused with excitement and those good nervous like feelings.  Decipher between the two and listen to the feelings that come up for you.

  • What’s the impact of making this decision and who outside of myself does it affect?

If you have children and a significant other, then obviously you need to consider how this will impact them.  If not and it’s just yourself, how will YOU be impacted by this decision? 

  • What’s the cost of NOT making this decision?

Growth is not meant to be comfortable.  Change is the only thing that is constant.  Discomfort arises when we’re being pushed outside of our comfort zones; sometimes directly and indirectly.  What would happen if you did nothing at all?

  • What’s the worst-case scenario?

Will there be a significant financial impact?  Is there a sacrifice you have to make in order to follow through on this decision?  What else could come up?

  • Does making this decision get me closer to WHO I want to be?

We’re always striving to be better than yesterday.  How does this decision help you get closer to who you want to be, or more importantly who you need to be for where you want to go in your life?

  • What will I have learned from this experience if it’s NOT the right decision for me?

Sometimes even when we feel we have all the information at our hands, with the best of intentions, we realize after the fact it wasn’t the best decision.  IT’S OK.  It happens.  You’re human and you’ll survive.  What can you learn from the experience and more importantly, what did you learn about yourself?

Some of these questions may seem deep or even complex however, they can serve as a start for you to consider some of the questions to ask yourself.  If there are other questions that you come up with that you would add, please feel free to do so!

The idea is you want to get comfortable with listening to your own voice, so that even with all the information you may have gathered, you feel confident in making a decision that aligns to what’s best for you.

Now here’s another question I have for you.

What are some effective methods you use when you have to make an important decision?

Remember, your thoughts can help someone who just might need to hear a fresh perspective. Don’t be shy and thanks so much for stopping by! ❤

With so much love,

Lisa

Give yourself the gift to BE Present

Photo by Lisa De Nicola

Welcome back!  To a new year, a new start and 365 days ahead of you to DO whatever it is your heart ❤ desires.

Coming back from a relaxed holiday with lots of time for rest, sleep (LOTS of sleep), family time, filling my belly (and soul) with love and yummy treats.  I’m looking forward to getting back into the swing of things.  The return to work after the Christmas holidays can sometimes be overwhelming as many of us are often being greeted by an avalanche of work that is just waiting to get done. 

There’s a sense of urgency to get things started, to gain some momentum having been off and business dormant for a few weeks.  To get some traction on projects that might have been set aside to get done or started on in the new year.  Not to mention, re-adjusting back to your weekday work routine of early mornings, preparing for your commute ahead (mentally and emotionally), early nights and let’s not forget your diet.  Gone are the holiday treats and magically you’re back to morning smoothies, soups and salads for lunch, etc.  😉

So how do you ensure a great start to the year without losing yourself in the hustle and bustle of routine? 

BE PRESENT.

Being present allows us to BE in the moment.  It helps us stay connected in the task at hand, the person we’re having a conversation with, or the meeting we’re trying to participate in, etc.  It also allows us to remain grounded and puts us in a relaxed state.  Particularly if you’re one who easily gets anxious by constantly projecting to the future or playing into the distractions that surround us all.  Just like maintaining balance in your day to day has its benefits, being present is equally just as important.  You can easily notice some of the benefits listed above once put into practice.


Photo by Nathan Dumlao on Unsplash

Believe me, I recognize the number of distractions we’re surrounded by.  Including those convenient devices we all walk around with 24/7, which can seem impossible to let go of all the time.  But the beauty that detaching and being in the moment in just the smallest of ways can offer us, is priceless.

In a world where we’re constantly planning for our futures or worrying about what happened yesterday, it’s no wonder we can’t appreciate the present moment for what it is!  The truth is, you’ll never have that same moment again if you’re too busy focused on the next thing to do.  What time you have to go to the gym, or that you have that appointment you need to make before you forget, etc. etc. etc.

I try my best to put this into practice every day, whether I’m by myself or with people and while it’s a work in progress, the benefits I can confidently say make a difference.  Not just for me, but the people I’m with as well.

Start with baby steps that can help shift your behavior.

Put your phone away when going to a business meeting or meeting a friend for coffee.  Not on the table face down – AWAY.

Take notice of your breathing and the way you feel whether you’re alone or with people.

If you have a nagging or recurring thought, notice it and let it pass.  Re-focus your attention to what you’re doing.  Writing down your thoughts or journaling before starting your day can help let go of any thoughts you might have and clear your head if you have a busy mind.

If you have someone in your life who is FABULOUS at being present – take notice of them!  Being around others who are equally present can make it easier to learn from and adopt simple practices.

Take notice of your surroundings.  Even if you go to the same coffee shop, ride the same bus or train everyday to work.  Try doing so without music in your ears, reading your book or scrolling through Instagram.  Try just sitting there without having to do something.

Again, baby steps to shift behavior.  It’s about progress, not perfection.  Give yourself the gift of BEING present and take joy in the benefits.

As always, I’d love to hear from you and please don’t be shy to share your thoughts!

What are some ways that help you BE present?

Thank you SO MUCH for starting 2019 with me!  I’m looking forward to the year ahead and what’s to come.  Thank YOU again for allowing me to fill your inbox each week, your time, attention, and energy. 🙏

With so much heart ❤ , 

Lisa xo

Resolutions, Goals, Plans – you don’t need a new year, you just need to start

I can’t believe I’m writing this to you as we fast approach the end of 2018!!

Where did the time go? I don’t know about you, but time has been flying by for me and I can’t believe we’re already planning for 2019.

For so many of us, I know 2018 has been a crazy ride full of growth, stumbles, transformation, high’s, low’s, and lessons.  I know for me; the back half of this year alone was FULL of new learning’s to say the least, all in an effort to push myself and learn something new.  More than just learn something, but really go out of my comfort zone.  I’d say I was successful. 🙂

Having said that, as we’re nearing the end of this crazy year, it’s also the time of year when the buzz in the air is all about new year’s resolution’s and what NEW goals, we’re going to make for ourselves.  There might be some goals that were set for this year but for whatever reason, you didn’t get around to them, so they may make the list again for 2019.  It’s also the time of year that’s typically joined by some sort of inspirational quote that’s along the lines of, “2018 changed me, 2019 I’m coming back” OR “leaving this year behind and walking into 2019 like..✨?.” 

The truth is, if you’re going to set goals for yourself and plan for the year ahead, don’t WAIT for a new year to do it.  Start NOW! I know that if you REALLY want something bad enough for yourself – regardless of what it is, you’ll start right away and won’t wait for a new year to start working towards it, right?

What I would encourage you to do is, in reflecting on the year that’s about to wrap up before our very eyes, ask yourself a few questions.  This might even help inspire how to approach setting out NEW goals for yourself as you look to 2019.

  • What did I accomplish this year that I am most proud of?
  • What lessons did I learn this year that will help me move forward?
  • What did I learn that I can not only continue to apply in my own life but help someone else?
  • What’s one thing I need to change (if anything), that can help me with… this could be a limiting belief, and/or story, a pattern, a habit you want to break, etc. (fill in the blank)

Remember, goal setting shouldn’t be a once a year process!  Yes, it’s a great opportunity to be making a list and starting out a new year fresh but consider when you’re most likely going to accomplish a goal.  It’s not at the start of a new year; it’s when you’re ready, you’re willing and you WANT a desired outcome – whatever that is for you.

I can’t wait to head into 2019 and I’m so excited for so many of you who will be entering new chapters of your lives, starting new jobs, celebrating new milestones, gearing up for a life change – so many wonderful things to celebrate! 

While you’re looking forward to starting the new year, don’t forget to celebrate how far you’ve come!! Celebrate YOU – not just the big wins but the little wins too.  You might think you’ve done nothing at all, but it’s often in the smallest of efforts that we’ve shifted, we’ve learned something, we’ve grown, we’ve evolved, we’ve transformed. 

So, if you’re planning for the year ahead and you’re partaking in a similar exercise, what’s at the top of your list for 2019?

I wish you SO much success in the new year ahead!  I hope you enjoy this holiday season and sending you and your families all my love. ❤

Lisa

xo

Got a plan? Great – now forget about it! 💯

Have you ever felt like you wanted to explore, take an adventure, use your time however you wanted to without having a plan and just… go with the flow?

Last week I was traveling on business and knew that my week would be hi-jacked with a 3-day meeting with no time to do anything but talk about – well business.  Numbers YTD (year to date), account developments, what we were trending for end of year objectives and discuss what are some initial thoughts were for 2019.  ✍

What that meant was this was another week of heads down, working away, planning how every minute, hour and day was being spent to cram everything in.  How often do you feel you need to plan for every moment, every work day, every weekend?  I know you’re used to planning as much as I am – we all do for the most part and believe me, I LOVE a good plan in my business and in my personal life.  It’s a part of life, it helps keep us on track and ensuring we’re working towards our goals and completely natural.

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GRATITUDE – Let us be Thankful!!

It seems fitting with the Canadian Thanksgiving around the corner that I write this week about the importance of gratitude.  For my American colleagues who celebrate in November, hopefully you can appreciate an early celebration for your fellow Canadian! 😉

I’m sure most of you have heard how important gratitude is to attract and continue to bring all those amazing blessings into your life, yes?  Because if you’re not actually grateful for what you already have, then why on earth would the Universe conspire to bring you more of what you want and are asking for?

Continue reading “GRATITUDE – Let us be Thankful!!”