How would you rate your health habits on a scale of 1-10, ten being very strong/consistent and 1 being very inconsistent?
This tends to be the time of year that I see a lot people struggle to be consistent with their healthy habits: holidays, holiday parties, weather changes and comfort eating…but I’m going to let you in on a little secret…
You can relax into your great self-care habits, be consistent and consistently feel good AND enjoy your life. There’s a secret ingredient that makes all the difference: internal boundaries.
I have read the book Boundary Boss by Dr. Terri Cole several times. It’s fantastic. And she makes a distinction between what most of us think of as boundaries (outer boundaries, boundaries with other people) and internal boundaries.
Internal Boundaries vs External Boundaries
The boundaries that most of us think about are external boundaries–boundaries that “tell people how you will and won’t interact with them.” But your internal boundaries relate to how you interact withYOURSELF.
When you have healthy internal boundaries, you consistently follow through on what you say you’re going to do. You keep your word to yourself. You can trust that you’ll follow through with your commitments.
In Boundary Boss, Dr. Cole describes how when a person has damaged internal boundaries and they make a promise to themselves in a moment of their own “personal betterment”, they struggle with self-abandonment (not following through on their word to themselves, choosing instant gratification instead).
This type of relationship with internal boundaries creates a breakdown in our ability to trust ourselves or feel any sense of peace that we will consistently choose things for our highest good. Instead, we are teaching ourselves the opposite: when things get hard, I’m going to bail on you! Don’t depend on me! From this vantage point, there is no possibility of creating consistent habits. If you want to relax into great self-care habits and consistently feel good, then strengthening your internal boundaries is essential.
3 Tips For Strengthening Your Internal Boundaries
This is an area I work on as part of my “creating an unstoppable health mindset” with clients. So many people come to me for help with their nutrition or lifestyle. However, knowing how much protein to eat or how to reduce health risks is such a small part of what’s really important to create health improvements. In order to make any goal stick, there must be consistency. In order for there to be consistency, there must be clarity about what to do and WHY to do it. It’s the WHY that keeps you focused so you can actually create results.
But the secret ingredient is strong internal boundaries. Without strong internal boundaries, you will always be able to find excuses, be indecisive, and fail to follow through on your plan/goal. It doesn’t matter how amazing a plan or goal is if you aren’t going to follow through on it! Strong internal boundaries are the key.
So, 3 tips for strengthening your internal boundaries are:
- Create a fresh start where you decide to keep your word to yourself. This will likely lead to changes in what you commit to.
- Be discerning in what you say you’ll do. In other words, if you have no intention of bailing or making excuses but instead are committed to keeping your word to yourself, say yes to those things and only those things. Say yes to the things that align with what you value and truly desire for yourself and your wellbeing.
- Give yourself plenty of encouragement. Celebrate this new path you are creating by acknowledging when you keep your word to yourself. And remember that strengthening anything takes time, so be kind to yourself if you struggle or slip up. Do your best to surround yourself with people who will support you along the way (friends, family, professionals).
Strengthening your internal boundaries is one of the most important things you’ll ever do. It can provide you with a deep sense of peace and safety.
I hope that this information empowers you towards living your best life.
It is my passion to work with people like you whose health symptoms are getting in the way of you living life fully and with a sense of freedom in your body. I can help you to regain your health so you can feel great and free to enjoy life fully.
If you’re ready to discover where your best health has been hiding, I’d love to connect with you!
Apply for a complimentary Unstoppable Health Discovery Session. http://bit.ly/schedulinghealth (subject to availability).
Until next time, I’m wishing you unstoppable health!