1300 228 042 info@joe-ringer.com
Select Page
letting go

I’ve walked along a rocky road to success. A few years ago, I experienced a sudden upheaval of every norm I knew. It took me years to find my new normal. Now, I’m with the love of my life, and I run a diverse portfolio of businesses. I get to coach others in business and help facilitate their strategies. I have the opportunity to hear stories of others’ journeys through personal pain. I create spaces and experiences where people can honestly engage with each other. I lead yoga, enjoy retreats and hikes, and savor quality fun and meaningful connection with my family. 

But I wouldn’t be in this position if I hadn’t experienced hardship of my own. These challenges showed me the importance of balancing my work and home life. Because I spent years learning these lessons, obstacles no longer feel as hard. I no longer dread the next difficult lesson on my path. I have established boundaries that allow me to live fully present in each aspect of my life. I now live and teach out of the wisdom I gained, make a difference in others’ lives, and feel free in myself.  

You have likely heard the term, “quiet quitting”. Instead of going above and beyond, an employee does only their required tasks within their required hours. But I urge you to look at this idea in a different way. If you need to step back from the emotional burden of your job, don’t think of it as “quitting”. Instead, consider it as placing boundaries on your emotional engagement. You still complete your work, both mentally and physically. You don’t check out. Instead, you draw a line to allow yourself to maintain your physical and mental health. With it, you no longer work in excess. 

If you don’t manage these boundaries in your life, you may experience severe consequences. 

Cons of a Lack of Workplace Boundaries 

You will have less available headspace in all areas. Through the years, I have learned a great deal about mental health—primarily through my own experience. When my life tumbled down, I struggled to find my way back to a sense of normalcy. I couldn’t concentrate. I became overwhelmed by  anxiety, depression, anger, and fear. This meant I didn’t have the head space to concentrate at my job or with my friends and family. 

You may lose interest in activities you previously enjoyed. Imagine a sales manager who loves sales and enjoys coaching. He manages a team of ten sales representatives who reach out to him day and night. He doesn’t want to discourage their eagerness because he wants to encourage their ability to make a sale at any moment. However, because of his constant involvement, his job slowly becomes less enjoyable. Work has consumed his life. He regularly pulls himself away from leisurely activities to refocus on work responsibilities outside of his normal hours. He can’t get his mind off work, and eventually, he feels annoyed when he clocks in because it feels like he never left. 

Without boundaries, you may experience long term psychological effects. Many of us have familiarity with the concept of burnout. The result of the prolonged stress we manage in our day-to-day lives leads to an inability to keep up with the demands of our post. Then, we feel exhausted, dispassionate, irritated, and we lose our motivation. We pull away from our support system. Did you know it can take two years to recover from burnout? Two years! Talk about costly damage. Don’t let burnout take over your life!

You can see the harm a lack of workplace boundaries can have on a person. Let’s look at some pros of putting healthy boundaries in place. 

Pros of Implementing Workplace Boundaries

Be more present in all aspects of your life. No one goes to their grave wishing they had worked more. People more commonly wish they had more life experiences, spent more time with loved ones, and completed bucket list items they never got around to because they stayed busy with work. If you have proper boundaries, you get to live in the moment without constantly feeling pulled between your personal and professional life. 

You have more headspace to process and create new ideas. When we confine our work to our scheduled work hours,  notice how much more headspace you actually have for your work. Some think they will fall behind if they don’t keep their work at the forefront of their entire day. But, in fact, you’ll come to the table with even more fresh ideas if you set up this boundary because you will have time to rest and recharge.

You have more ability to make a positive impact. When we struggle with burnout, we tend to have a hard time seeing the needs of those beyond us. But with a healthy mindset, you can concentrate on helping others get to a place of positive boundaries. You have the opportunity to affect change in the world around you and help others who may struggle as you have. 

You may think, “This may work for you, but I have trouble setting and sticking to boundaries”.  I know many amazing books exist on this topic, but let me give you a few tips to help you start your journey. 

How Can You Set Boundaries? 

  1. Utilize tools on your phone. 

Phones nowadays have the amazing ability to set specific apps on “do not disturb” mode for specific periods of time. This means any app you use for work (email, slack, teams, etc.) can be silenced outside of your contracted hours. You’ll get no notifications or badges, so you don’t have to worry about these until you start working again. 

2. Communicate clearly about the hours you will respond to questions. 

I understand some people who have overzealous managers may find this difficult. However, if your manager wants you to work outside of your contracted hours, you are within your right to say, “My contracted hours are between __ and __, and I’ll be sure to answer your messages then.” Then, you face the tricky part… sticking to it! 

3. Do your work, and only your work. 

Stay within your scope of work, and do the work well. You don’t need to pile more on your plate to “impress the boss”. Employers value a worker who comes in and does their job well. Adding extra work to your plate does not guarantee a promotion.  But it does ensure other negative results. 

 

I urge you to remember the importance of your mental health. Put boundaries in place so you can avoid burnout and enjoy healthy engagement in all aspects of your life. Transformation won’t happen overnight, but if you dig deep and practice good boundaries, you can make healthy, sustainable changes for yourself.