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Managing the Stress of the Holidays: Setting Boundaries to Maintain Wellness. Kenneth Zeigler, LCSW-C And Amy Price, LCPC October 22, 2009. What we will cover…. Defining boundaries Boundary-setting during the holidays Boundary-setting and self-awareness

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managing the stress of the holidays setting boundaries to maintain wellness

Managing the Stress of the Holidays: Setting Boundaries to Maintain Wellness

Kenneth Zeigler, LCSW-C

And

Amy Price, LCPC

October 22, 2009

what we will cover
What we will cover…

Defining boundaries

Boundary-setting during the holidays

Boundary-setting and self-awareness

Practical tips for good boundary-setting

defining boundaries
Defining Boundaries

“A boundary is a limit or edge that defines you as separate from others” (Katherine, 1991, p. 14)

  • Dynamic
  • Self-determined
  • Evocative of individual identity
  • Varying

“Boundaries come in assorted shapes and sizes. They can be rigid like a brick wall or as flexible as a plastic bag, as impenetrable as a lead shield or as permeable as a chain-link fence” (Katherine, 1991, p. 20)

what s difficult about setting boundaries
What’s difficult about setting boundaries?

Counter-intuitive

We feel selfish

Traditions are difficult to break

Often met with resistance

what s difficult about setting boundaries during the holidays
What’s difficult about setting boundaries during the holidays?

Holidays heighten tension

Tension increases stress

Stress increases struggles with boundary-setting

Is there another way?

Tension as a means to change

boundaries and self awareness
Boundaries and Self-Awareness

“Good boundaries enable us to define ourselves” (Katherine, 1991, p. 205)

They enable us to:

*Understand identity

*Establish voice

*Develop priorities

self awareness cont
Self-Awareness cont…

What stops us from setting boundaries?

  • Guilt
  • Obligation
  • Tradition
  • People-pleasing
steps to good boundary setting
Steps to Good Boundary-Setting

“If you continue to tolerate behavior that is unacceptable to you, you are making a conscious decision to do so. You must make the choice to set boundaries” (Levang, 2009, p. 2).

1. Acknowledge feelings without judgment

boundary setting cont
Boundary-setting cont…

2. Create a Plan

Relational

Emotional

Spiritual

Time-oriented

Financial

Understanding

Legitimate

boundary setting cont10
Boundary-setting cont…

3. Accept change

4. Defer grievances “Try to accept family members and friends as they are, even if they don’t live up to all your expectations” (Mayo Clinic, 2007, p. 3).

5. Be flexible

boundary setting cont11
Boundary-setting cont…

6. Don’t abandon healthy habits

7. Learn forgiveness

8. Celebrate your true meaning of the holiday season

boundary setting cont12
Boundary-setting cont…

9. Know what you want

10. Design an exit strategy

worksheet
Worksheet

What can you take away from tonight?

slide14
Q & A

Any questions?

references
References

Katherine, A. (1991). Where you end and I begin. New York: Simon and Schuster.

Levang, C. (2009). How to set boundaries with family and friends. Associated Content. www.associatedcontent.com

Mayo Clinic. (2007). Stress, depression and the holidays: 12 tips for coping.www.mayoclinic.com

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