Boundaries – is it ok to say no?

by | Oct 31, 2021 | Business, General, Strengths

Is it OK to set boundaries and say NO in your business? I’m talking about when there are too many initiatives going on at the same time, everything is urgent, and meeting attendance and access are expected off-hours. Is it OK to say, “no that doesn’t work for me”, or are the expectations for you to be a YES no matter what?
I’ve seen it too often, this “push” reality where more and more gets loaded on your plate in an environment where you feel like you can’t say no. Often it’s the yes people that increase their load. When that’s an ongoing reality, with no appreciation for the extra effort is given or staff added when help is needed, it’s unhealthy.
Why is it that the people that perform and contribute to the business consistently don’t get help? Before you judge your people with “attitude” or “opinions” check what their workload and role look like and why they’re expressive. Remember that many heart-centered, passionate people that care about the business and express their opinions are not jaded – they want the business to grow. These are the people you want to retain and invest in.
I talk about energy a lot and it’s interesting to me that many people think that they don’t know what that means. Energy is the space that you respond and react to, the unspoken, unseen, that connects us all. It’s the part of us that is way bigger than our bodies.
Think about the last time something triggered you, was it the vibe, tone of voice, body language not jiving with the spoken word, or was it the way someone expressed themselves in an email? There’s always a frequency of energy attached and that is where boundaries can get tricky.
When the internet got added to the masses 30 years ago or so we got global access to energy on a different level. Most of you have experienced how easy it is to lose hours online unless you’re disciplined enough to set a timer that is! And if you stop for a moment and ask yourself why you’ll find that there is an energy that hooks you. So what does that have to do with business? Everything.
Every email, text, etc. that gets sent out communicates energy. If you’re in a bad mood sending something out, some of your people will pick that up, others won’t on a conscious level but they may still react without knowing why.
What are you inviting people to?
When you have space to breathe before hitting send your communication may occur differently, often we’re in such a rush to get things done that we forget what the impact is on the other end of the email. Take that extra minute.
We’ve gone from a society where we connected and talked to each other in person to one where much of the communication is conducted via text or email, what’s the impact of that and the well-being? It’s super convenient to text/email and we can send it when we want.
Then there’s the follow-up. Do people respond to your emails because you’re the leader or do you have to remind them?
Ghosting someone electronically is easier than in person, right? and yet in a work environment that is not OK, unless you want to get fired.
The trick to avoiding people head-tripping is to establish and clearly communicate what the expectations are for your company and also what company culture you want to create. Being a leader is more about creating a vision that inspires your people and acknowledging them for what they create for you than taking credit for their creations. At least if you want to retain your rock stars.
When you’re in a healthy environment working with your buddies, emailing or texting on the weekend will occur totally different than when there’s no trust established. As a leader, you need to think about that and you set the tone.
When do you text or email then? Most email platforms offer the ability to schedule the delivery of your email. There are now options via text too.
Don’t send emails on the weekend unless that’s part of the job, the person is on call and works weekends, or it’s absolutely crucial for that person to act on it immediately. At least not if you want to create a healthy environment. Emails and texts can create a lot of stress.
While you have a choice whether you look at emails/texts or not, you may feel obligated to and if there is more than one person copied in that can quickly turn into overwhelm with a string of emails.
Connect and disconnect
We’re human beings and need to connect. It’s so much faster and often easier to sort out things in person when it’s a topic beyond yes/no and time. Now more than ever I think many appreciate it too and yes, that too depends on who it is.
Just as important as connecting it’s also important to disconnect. We all have different needs, some need to spend more time in their cave than others and it’s important to have the peace of mind to take the time out to re-energize yourself.
So how do you disconnect from distress when it’s energy? The thing is that you can’t without taking an action. Sometimes standing up and moving your body is all that is required, a walk, a workout, listening to song that you love changes your frequency just like you change channels on your TV.
You have unique needs. Honor them. Recharge “doing” stuff that turns you on, in other words, energizes you.
At the end of the day you have a choice, it’s your life after all. Being in a company is like dating in some ways. When the mission, vision, and targets align with your own beliefs there’s a foundation to build on that gets better and better, and when it’s not, do you take the blue or red pill?
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