Boundaries Throughout the Holidays

Holiday BoundariesBy Dr. Barbara Seifert, CPC

This may come a bit late, but now that we are in the throes of the holiday season there is no better time than to set boundaries that will help you breeze through the holidays. The benefits? You will feel less stress, be more focused and organized, and actually have a good time. I find that the time between Thanksgiving and Christmas can bring so much turmoil to people’s lives, with buying presents, worry about finances, baking, shopping, parties, cleaning, etc. that it never seems we have enough time or energy. Faced with a perceived insurmountable list of tasks to complete and demands by others, it can leave one feeling empty and resentful of this festive time.

Dependent upon one’s personality type, such as empaths or people-pleasers, this can be more depleting and take its toll. Before this happens to you, now is the time to set good boundaries so you can survive and enjoy this – and future – holiday season. Boundaries are those personal spaces for what we will allow, and not allow, into our lives. These areas can include:

  • Our time
  • Our personal space
  • Health and wellness
  • Finances
  • Relationships/family
  • Work
  • Inability to say ‘No’

Knowing where your boundaries lie is critical to leading a well-balanced life but this time can elicit more boundary-crossing and from so many different sources that is it imperative to protect your ‘sacred space.’ Here are some suggestions to help:

Know your own boundaries.

Determine what you are, and are not, willing to allow into your life in terms of the areas above. Decide how far you are willing to go and how you will know when you are over-extended (irritable, anxious, snappy, etc.)

Make a list of all tasks and areas you need to deal with in the coming weeks and when they need to be done by. 

This will give you a visual picture so you can now make informed decisions as to which task gets prioritized and which you might need to let go of; for example, you might have two obligations on the same day so knowing your options will help you to decide if you will go to one or try to do both.

Learn to say “No” – this is actually a sentence, with no explanation needed.

Practice saying the word to feel empowered.  You might come up with an assertive explanation (as opposed to a lame excuse) for how you will protect your space.  You will find that people are more understanding and respectful than you may think.

Following these steps and honoring yourself will help you to breeze through this holiday season with bells on – “jingle all the way!”

Dr. Barbara Seifert, CPC is the President of Committed to Your Success Coaching & Consulting in Orlando, Florida. She works with small business owners & solopreneurs who want to achieve measurable and life-long improvements in their performance so they can make more money, have greater satisfaction and achieve personal and professional success. She also coaches in organizations to enhance employee engagement and for leadership development.Dr. Seifert is an adjunct professor, a certified professional coach, a certified Neuro-Linguistic Programming practitioner and a Certified Law of Attraction coach. You can learn more by visiting and Your Career Success Blog at, which was named one of the Top 100 Life Coaching Blogs to Follow in 2013.

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