Have you noticed a growing sense of physical or emotional fatigue lately?  Have you been feeling just a little more resentful about some responsibilities or time commitments in your life?  Fatigue and resentment go together and they are often the result of an inability to set and maintain good boundaries.

It all comes down to that little word “no”.  Either because of the way we were raised or because of poor self-care habits, we can so easily get in a pattern of saying “yes” when we really mean “maybe” or agreeing to something we have no energy for or interest in. “No” is a holy word when it is used to honor, respect, and protect oneself.  It is a necessary word in the vocabulary of self-care.

All self-care starts with good boundary setting; it is the ultimate act of self-love because it puts protective parameters around your life; it protects your time, energy, and inner and outer resources.  A boundary tells others how you prefer to be treated.  It can also

  • help you feel safe and respected
  • better define your sense of personal space
  • eliminate patterns of victimization
  • encourage you to take better care of yourself
  • invite a mutually respectful dynamic between you and the other people in your life

When you do not set and maintain good boundaries, deferring instead to the needs, wants, or preferences of others, you can easily feel controlled, manipulated, and even violated by the people and circumstances in your life.  This is especially true during times of bereavement, when your energy reserves are already compromised.

A good boundary reflects a growing sense of self-worth. Actions that support your life are going to add to your health, happiness, and total wellbeing.  Learning to say “no” as a means of caring for yourself can infuse your mind with new energy and your heart with a calming peace.  Each “no” can become a “yes” to choices that more honestly nurture and sustain you, not just during a time of bereavement but through all the days of your life.

I welcome your comments.