Boundaries

I don’t know about you, but I need some #MentalHealthMonday in my life! So, here on this little everything blog-I’m going to use some of these Monday’s to bring awareness to some mental health issues.

What are boundaries?

Physical boundaries pertain to your personal space, privacy and body. Emotional boundaries are more internal boundaries that separate your emotions and responsibility for them from someone else’s. It’s like an imaginary line or force field that separates you and others.  Mental boundaries are similar in that they apply to your thoughts, values, and opinions. 

Through some time in therapy, I have come to think of my boundaries as this: I have a house with a beautiful and maintained yard, and around that is a white picket fence. That fence is a boundary-now if you also now me and that house, you’ll see a second higher fence with barbed wire and electricity running through it and possible a mote with alligators beyond that…but its a good visual.

Boundaries, in simple form, are your bottom lines. Your rules and principles that you live by. Simple, right?

If you are like me, it hasn’t always been that simple. I am people-pleaser by nature and I’ve always had some issues with boundaries and finding a healthy balance. My bottom line was an ever changing and chaotic blur that caused me way more damage in the long run! And damage to MYSELF. (And, let’e be honest-if your ‘friend’ ever has an issue with one of your boundaries that you’ve set up, are they really a good friend?!) Think on that!

Recently, I went through my social media and unfollowed, muted and blocked some accounts. *Sarcastic, hands up and fainting*

Social Media is a blessing and a curse. Social net-working and being able to connect with friends and family over vast distances is AMAZING and not only that, but for businesses-it’s a game changer! There is a dark side…It’s linked to a high percentage of teen and young adult depression and insecurity, but also to adults. 77% of Americans have social media accounts (I didn’t even look at the numbers nation wide because the numbers I saw linked to America was enough to hurt my head!). A study I read about that I will link here, proved that the study group that had less to no social media interaction after a number of weeks, had less mental issues such as loneliness and depression (or FOMO, if you will).

Back to my very public, very active account on Instagram. I would say a great deal of my life is fitness, and I share that through my profile. Fitness Funsized was created for fun but quickly grew into a brand that I now use as a business. Last year, maybe even a little over (maybe 2 years-I’m horrendous with this stuff) I decided to make it just that. Business.

That simple concept alone (of treating Instagram as a business tool) helped me so much mentally. Instagram, and I’m not proud of this, had become my LIFE when I first began it. I wanted, NEEDED, those likes and follows and validation. Until the I hit rock bottom in my life, and I don’t mean a drugs or alcohol kind of bottom. I hit life rock bottom with depression, my relationshits/ships were failing left and right, I had turned 30 with no career or anything to my name besides a follower count and fan base. (Which, I love all my fans and fit family still!). That being said, I learned the hard way about boundaries, about people, about social media…

That being said, I don’t feel bad blocking people like I once had. I used to think “OMG what if they get upset?!” or what if it caused unnecessary drama?

SO WHAT IF IT DOES?!

I’m here to tell you, like I needed to hear (and still need reminded of occasionally) that social media is what it is. It’s your account, your mental health and you have every right to protect your mental and physical health.

I’ve unfollowed fitness celebrities that I would once compare myself to in a very unhealthy way. I’ve blocked past relationships with men that I know are unhealthy. I wish them all well-I really do! But, I can not have a door that could even possibly be opened to them from either side if I want to move on with my life! And that goes for women who I compare myself with, past female friends who have created an unhealthy and competitive environment, men who’ve I had a relationship with or even unhealthy friendships….

That’s one of the great things social media has given us too! Is it rude to be at your desk and pull out a full size changing screen with a huge ‘BLOCKED’ written on it to the girl a cubicle away that posts her baby, perfect husband and cat memes all day everyday…yes it would be. So, discreetly, you can block her from popping up on your feed. FYI, I don’t have a desk nor do I know anyone that does this-but you catch my drift!

I wish everyone well that was in my past, but, they are in my past for a reason and I’ve created a healthy boundary to protect myself and my mental health. I hope they do as well, and my hope is that you go through and ‘clean up’ your social media as well! Block, un-follow, mute, deactivate and unplug when needed. It’s OK to create the boundaries needed for your own good!

With all that being said, there is an amazing book I’ve read, and re-read called Boundaries, that will be linked here if you are ever interested in reading!

No artful bullshit and forever yours,

Jess

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