This past Summer I decided to schedule my time. I bought a big appointment calendar, like the ones in nail salons.
On a Friday or Sunday afternoon, I take a look at the following week. Breakfast, lunch, dinner, exercise and reoccurring activities that are the same from week to week are recorded. Dentist and Doctors’ appointments, hair, lunch and dinner dates are carefully written in the correct time slot.
Those are the bones of my days. When people buy houses they mention, bones. “This house has good bones” My weeks need good bones or boundaries. Structure was missing from my life and that’s why I started scheduling every single thing, morning, noon and night, even the time I plan to wake up and go to sleep.
However, one change made all the difference in the world. I now schedule social phone calls and I never schedule two phone calls back to back. I allow time before moving on to the next activity to give myself a break for various things like water, bathroom, rest, and maybe some deep beathing. When we allow ourselves enough time to transition or travel from one activity to another, we are not so frantic and always on time.
I’ll actually text someone now and ask if they’d like to talk Friday at 4. If it works, great, if not, I have my calendar in front of me and we immediately find an alternate date and a mutually agreed upon time and place rather than putting it off. My big black book saves me from writing important information on scratch paper, Kleenex boxes or the backs of envelopes.
What a difference, for the better, it’s made! I’m a lot calmer. In the past, if I didn’t have time to talk, I’d attempt to write a quick text. Truth be told, I end up spending way too much time typing then realizing too late how much time I wasted. Dictating always involves frustrating time-consuming auto correction. Besides, my texts are way too long and no one likes long texts! That’s another story!
Actually, no one calls anyone anymore unless there is an emergency or we suddenly have something important we want to share at that very moment and it simply can’t wait. If we make or answer random calls, chances are we forget the reason for the call. How many of us need to return calls yet put them off until we can find a chunk of time, although we never do.
However, If I schedule a weekly or by weekly gab session, we don’t have as much to catch up on. This has been so successful for me, and it works out even better if I set a time limit on the call before I make it. I found if I text one of my kids and say, “Do you have about 15 minutes Sunday at 1 to face time?” Surprisingly, they do. If I don’t give them a date and time, they are afraid they’ll get stuck on the phone with me. Boundaries are essential to our well-being. They work, making life so much easier.
Stop asking why they keep doing it and start asking why you keep allowing it. Unknown
Boundaries: If someone throws a fit because you set boundaries. It’s just more evidence the boundary is needed. Unknown
The only people who get upset about you setting boundaries are the ones who were benefitting from you having none. Unknown