Boundaries are an important aspect of our personal and professional life. Successful people have learned to apply boundary principles to their life to get to the next level. Boundaries are not new concepts or ideas; long before Cloud and Townsend wrote about boundaries in their book with the same name the Bible spoke of the need for boundaries in all aspects of life. The most famous boundary passage is Proverbs 4
Proverbs 4:23 (NLT) – Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life.
What’s more, the Old Testament and the New Testament have countless references and principles for living successfully by leveraging the power of personal boundaries.
In today’s post I want to share 4 simple boundaries that we can apply to our professional and personal life; leverage them effectively and watch your stress levels go down while your efficiency goes up.
Boundary Principle 1 – Recharge
It is vital that we take time to recharge as leaders. We were not designed to go without a break in life. In fact, in the 10 commandments, God himself commands us to take a break every seven days. Work hard for six days and take a break on the seventh day. This is such an important principle that God applies it to Himself as well. In six days He created the heavens and the earth and everything in them and then He rested on the seventh. When we rest on the seventh day it recharges our internal batteries (physically, mentally, spiritually, and emotionally) and it demonstrates our dependence on God (i.e. He will provide for us when we honor Him with our time). I believe that God will BLESS our six days of hard work when we honor Him with our seventh day of rest!
How to recharge.
- Take a nap
- Take a hike
- Do something that relaxes you (personally I like watching an NFL football game in the fall and winter on Sunday afternoons. There is something about listening to the “white noise” of the crowd cheering that puts me right to sleep).
- Read a book
- Go for a walk with a friend
- Learn to relax
Boundary Principle 2 – Social Media
To be productive as a leader and in our personal lives, we need to turn off the social media notifications on our phones. What’s more, we need to limit the amount of time we spend on social media. It is a time-waster most of the time and a tool only some of the time. We need to learn/train ourselves to take a social media holiday at least once a week (that means no social media on those days). Several years ago, I started to see some bad characteristics in my social media behavior that I didn’t like. To work through the issue, I had to put myself through a Social Media Boot Camp (90 days of no social media) to retrain myself on how to use it better – oh, I still fail but I believe I am getting better.
Boundary Principle 3 – Money Management
Finances are to be used as a tool in business and in our personal life. However, we can put the “need” for money ahead of relationships and life with one poor decision. We MUST see that money will NEVER be the source of life, God is. And what’s more, God is our provider for all things life. I must remind myself of this principle every day so that I give God His proper place in my life and I don’t allow money to become the king.
Boundary Principle 4 – Time Management
Dallas Willard says, “You must ruthlessly eliminate hurry from your life.” Hurry and busyness will kill your soul, your inner being. We need to learn to say “NO” to most of the opportunities that come our way, so we can say “yes” to the best. The problem with saying “no” to activities is that in our culture today we have countless opportunities to be active in fun things. We get into a trap thinking we will “miss out on life” if we say “no” to the party invitation, festival, movie release, shopping, etc… But it is being over-active that is killing our life. Learn to say “no” to most activities so you can say yes to the best!
What Are Your Thoughts?
Did I miss a boundary that you think should be on this list? Send me an email at [email protected] I would love to hear your thoughts in 100 words or less (that is a TIME Boundary). Also, if you liked this post please remember to like, share, and comment on it. Thanks!