30 Days of Boundaries Day 19: How to Implement Boundaries at Work

Photo by  Tim Gouw  on  Unsplash

Photo by Tim Gouw on Unsplash

Most of our waking hours are spent consecutively at our jobs and when you're spending that much time in one place, you basically get into some scenarios where you might encounter burnout if you don't have your days designed the right way. Now, for many of us, we've been at our jobs for a while, so the prospect of actually trying to change how we do things without getting first approval from our bosses can be traumatic to some, downright frightening to others. The best way to approach this is more or less to figure out exactly what you want to do, and what your day should look like.

Now, for some of us, we may not know. That's where I can definitely help you get clear and get some clarity on that.. Right now, I want to focus on how to approach your boss about changing how you do things. The first step is just realize the fact that you are approaching burnout or maybe in a worse case scenario, you are burned out at work already. Acknowledging that is a huge step. Most people don't even get to that stage. If you're understanding that things aren't right, and you feel overwhelmed, that's good. It's not good that you're overwhelmed, but it's good that you feel that, and you understand it.

Otherwise, you might be going through the motions, and hating your job, and wanting to leave, and do all of these things when in fact, it may not be the job where the problem is. The issue may be on how you approach your job and how you do things. Identifying what's bugging you is a big thing. Write down all of the things that bother you about your job. Be open. This is a conversation with yourself, and it doesn't have to be something that you do overnight. You can write it down over a week, maybe even a month. Depending on the type of work you do, you may have cycles and seasons of things. You may want to take a look at those as well and see if there's busier seasons and others that drag you down.

The second thing you need to understand is how you approach your boss about this is crucial. Hopefully, you have a good communication system with your boss or bosses. If not, then that's going to be the next step is to figure out how to communicate. The best way to find out is ask them. Whenever I get a new boss, I always ask, "How would you like me to communicate with you? Do you want it in face-to-face meetings, over emails, a scheduled meeting, free form?" Figure out what their stye is and deliver to them the communication in a format that's good for them and for you. If it doesn't align with how you want to communicate, then bring that up.

Once you get the communication paths all sorted out, the next thing is to approach your boss with your concerns. You may have to do this by being humble, I guess is a good way to put it. You don't go in as a victim. Don't blame your organization. Definitely don't blame your boss, but approach them and say that you're worried about yourself and you need some help and some guidance. When I'm a boss and when people come to me and they ask for help, it feels good, because one, they trust me to be able to guide them. Number two, they understand that they need some help to grow. That is a huge step for an individual to be able to do that. Once you do that, then you can sit down with your boss and talk about the different things that are bugging you.

Your boss may not be able to address everything, but at least if you can alleviate some of the burdens that's causing you to get burned out, that is a huge win for you. That's a huge win for the organization because it increases the likelihood that you're actually going to stay in the organization for a bit.

If you want more tips, reach out to me with scenarios that you're struggling with at work and I can guide you on how to navigate those.

Until next time. Be well.