by Chantl Martin | Featured Contributor
The day my daughter was born, my mom encouraged me to hand my newborn over to the nurse and rest. “This will be your only guaranteed night of peaceful sleep from now on” my mom encouraged me. I didn’t notice it at the time, but that was the first instance where I realized that sometimes I have to prioritize serving myself and, more importantly, it is okay to prioritize myself. I quickly learned that this principle didn’t only apply to rest and self care.
As my daughter got older and my life became a constant battle between getting ready for school, after school activities, meal prep and bedtime routines became more important to carve out time outside of my day job to pursue my passion. I would have to prioritize my dream when it was hard, when I’d rather go out with friends or family and when I’d rather be having a lazy day and watching Netflix. Creating boundaries is the best way to make sure your big vision has the space, time and opportunity to thrive.
Here’s how I started, in baby steps, and how you can, too.
Have a Set Bed Time For The Kids
To be honest, I LOVE our bedtime routine. After a hard day’s work, I look forward to hopping in the bed with my daughter going through math flash cards and ending off the night reading a Harry Potter thriller. Even though I get carried away in our quiet moments together, I make sure that at 9:00 she is tucked in and getting her daily forehead kiss because 9:01 starts my me-time.
Setting (and sticking to) an early bed time sends a clear message of when your personal time begins and makes the space for you to take steps toward achieving your big vision.
Carve Out A Good Time To Connect with Family and Friends
Your vision for your life is important but so are the relationships that you build over time with friends and family. It’s your job to make sure that taking time for friends and family doesn’t completely kill your productivity too often.
I like to take the time I spend driving to work to call people and check on them. This way, I get the benefit of checking in on friends and family without it being a distraction from my work towards my goals (it also doesn’t eat up your precious me-time). Find a time that works for you and catch up with your loved ones. Setting boundaries makes sure you don’t neglect these relationships in an effort to build your empire.
Take social media notifications off your phone.
Do you ever find yourself in the middle of a good work session where your blog post is just flowing through your fingers and the your phone pings with a notification prompting you to leave your work and scroll through social media, completely derailing your productivity for 15 minutes (sometimes more)?
I’m not saying delete the apps because many of us use social media as a way to connect with our audience. However, setting the notifications to “off” gives you control of how and when you communicate with your audience. That way you can make sure that your moments of productivity are never disturbed by Facebook group comments, tweets or IG DM’s.
Create a Business Cheat Day
You’ll need boundaries for all of the distractions in your life, but you’ll also need boundaries for your business so your life doesn’t become consumed with business planning and execution. All aspects of your vision for your life are important not just your career + side-gig goals. If you want to lose weight, eat healthier, spend more time traveling or catch up on random shows on Netflix, that is all important to how you enjoy your life.
Set one day aside to be yourself and do what makes you happy because your happiness matters. It also gives you more energy to return to your goals and dreams when you take care of yourself. So apply self care generously.
Being able to make room for your big vision for your life is an important, but difficult task. There are many distractions that can suck your time and energy. Remember that if you give your time and energy to the right thing at the right time you can have amazing family relationships and build a business and care for yourself. With boundaries in place, you may not be able to have it all at once, but you can certainly have it all.