Whether you love it, or hate it, working from home has become part of the “new normal” for many people around the world. At first it can sound like it’s going to be awesome, no more sitting in hours of traffic / crowded commutes, or having to wake up at the crack of dawn to ensure you are fully dressed and made up.
The allure can however quickly start to fade as you realise that you are working longer hours than ever before, having more meetings to ensure that everyone is on the same page and your whole home has become your work place so there is just no switching off (this is not to even mention having kids at home which is a topic for a whole other post).
Why are boundaries so much harder when working from home?
With what we have collectively been through this year that forced us to stay home, so many are struggling with this transition. From conversations and coaching sessions with clients, I understand many are finding themselves working longer and harder than ever before and starting to feel like they are burning out from the pressure.
I remember when I first started working for myself, I had come from working in corporate for 12 years. I was used to working from different offices, hotel rooms, airplanes and occasionally from home. I naturally thought that it was going to be an easy transition and fun to now be able to work at home on my own terms. I quickly realised however that it was not as much fun as it was made out to be. I had just had a baby at the time which was a whole other ball game but I found that putting boundaries in place was imperative to my wellbeing (especially as I had burnt out before).
Various different tricks like making sure I got dressed each day, had a place to work outside of my usual relaxing spaces and scheduled self-care in my diary really helped. However, setting boundaries is so individual as it will depend on your life and circumstances.
The 4 Things you Should Know
I therefore wanted to help with giving you 4 things you should know about setting boundaries when working from home and why you may be struggling to put these in place during this period.
Highlighted are questions you can use to reflect on in order to start moving forward.
- The biggest block to putting boundaries in place is often our beliefs about ourselves and life in general. So many of us believe we aren’t good enough, or deserving or that we have to put everyone else’s needs before our own. These beliefs often cause us to prove ourselves which makes us push harder and harder. With working from home being relatively new to some companies and unfortunately people losing their jobs, it will be only natural to want to show that you are on top of everything. However, if you have these subconscious beliefs you will push even harder, not only to prove yourself to others, but to also prove yourself to you.
Question to Reflect: What beliefs could be stopping me from putting healthy boundaries in place?
- As women we are playing so many roles, from daughter, to wife / partner / to career women, to mom. Often, we have put really unrealistic standards and expectations on how we show up in these roles which can make us feel like we are constantly failing. Our self-worth can become so entwined with how we are performing in these roles, so if it isn’t going according to our initial plans, we can start to feel like there is something wrong with us and again push ourselves harder. During these times this will be even harder as the standards we have initially set will more than likely be very unrealistic for our current circumstances.
Question to Reflect: What standards and expectations have I placed on the roles that I play and are these realistic?
- When setting boundaries, it is great to know what are your negotiable vs non negotiable. What can you accept, what will you be able to accept from time to time, and what is just not working for your overall well-being? Often the lines between what we can and can’t accept can get really blurred as we don’t want to let anyone down, cause conflict or stand out so we start to let things slide. This however is where we stop trusting ourselves. In order to set better boundaries during this time, sometimes we need to have non-negotiable like take lunch, switching off at a certain time or having a specific place to work that is not your relaxing space.
Question to Reflect: What are your negotiable vs non-negotiable?
- During this time, what has led to many struggling is the lack of control. When we feel like we are out of control, we will reach either to anything to feel in control again or to numbing so we don’t have to face reality. This can often result in us going into old habits of over working and pushing hard. Otherwise numbing more scrolling through our phones, binge watching Netflix or having an extra cheeky glass of wine. Just noticing these habits is the best place to start.
Question to Reflect: What habits or patterns have emerged from feeling out of control?
I hope you find this useful and would love to hear your thoughts so feel free to comment below.
If you are struggling with this and are starting to feel tired or burnt out then I have just 5 spots open for the rest of the month to work with women who are ready to STOP BURNING OUT and ACTUALLY START LIVING
This 60-minute Burning Out to Blooming Session with me is valued at $250 but I’m offering you the opportunity to experience this amazing transformation with zero cost to you. Simply tap here to complete a quick application, and myself or one of my team will respond within 24 hours.