Setting clearer boundaries with my time allows me to be more present with others. Without boundaries, I’m unsure when to separate from others and when to be flexible.
It Took Trial and Error
Before I understood and communicated my needs, I found myself easily annoyed by others. I did activities that I didn’t want to be doing. It felt like I was wasting time. However, I was terrified to admit that to others. I didn’t know how to express my need for space without hurting anyone.
For example, I started a new daily work-from-home schedule, and my family didn’t actually know what I was doing all day—mainly because I hadn’t told them. They thought I was meditating and doing yoga all day, which would be awesome. But I had to be brave and speak out loud that I am beginning a new career. Verbally expressing it made it more real, and having to tell others my schedule helps me honor it.
Communicating important things with kindness is a bumpy road to navigate. It took trial and error. And in the famous words of Michelangelo, “I am still learning.”
Make Room for Presence
Lately, I genuinely appreciate the time spent with others. I understand the preciousness of each moment. Taking more space away has helped me truly see the gift in front of me.
It’s always been that way for me. Vacations, trips, and adventures are incredible in their own right. But the new sight that being away gifts me is even more so. Things once mundane become alive. Invisible trees are suddenly a prominent forest.
Remember to Be Your Own Person
When in constant contact with those you live with, bravely make space for yourself. And when you are together, be fully there (with yourself and others). Soon enough, being with others begins to feel the same as being on your own because you can recognize your energy. With this familiarity, it’s easy to know what is yours and what is another’s.
You are an individual. Others’ challenges are not yours to carry. Your purpose is to be a reminder of love alongside another individual. As I remember this and embody this, being present becomes easier.
Create your life. Fill it with things that make you happy, even if you must go alone. Talk to old friends. Make space for the trips that are calling to your heart. That’s the advice I give to another because it’s the same advice I give myself.
Be a good friend to the self, and all others will benefit.
Brittany is a writer, teacher, and yoga facilitator. She believes in kindness, especially when applied to the self. Here she shares her personal experiences as a world traveler and as a 'trial-and-error' sort of person. She learns the hard way and hopes to relay her findings to help others in the most practical way.