My favorite self-help queen, Rachel Hollis, is in what she calls a “difficult season” right now. She’s gracious enough to share these little glimpses of her life as it drastically changes. She’s allowing her followers and readers to see a little bit of her pain through her emails, podcasts, and posts. However, as someone who’s felt pain so deep that you feel hollow, I know that she’s only allowing us a glimpse. She’s set a healthy boundary on what the world is allowed to see into her private, personal life.
For a long time, I’ve broadcasted pain, hurt, and embarrassment online. I’ve told the Internet how much I weigh and that one of my family members called me fat. One time, I told my podcast that I wanted to kill myself for about 75% of my Junior Year or high school. I’ve given you my prescriptions. My stomach sank as I let the world know that my boyfriend was cheating on me. I’ve told you all about my migraines that make me feel like an alien. Still, I walk around with next to zero regret for any of the things that I’ve shared online.
As a blogger, it’s difficult to separate what I should share and what I should keep to myself. In one frame of mind, the more that I’m vulnerable with you, the more you might feel empowered, safe, and strong. On the other, though, where do we draw the line between vulnerability and tearing your heart out?
Here’s Rachel’s argument on setting boundaries:
In her podcast, “Seven Things that Are Helping Me Through This Dark Season,” Rachel talks about how people are really quick to judge what, how, or when we’re willing to share our grievances. For her, they’re expecting another New York Times Best Seller when all she wants time away from her life. In my case, I think I’m expected to put everything I’ve been through online. As if not blogging about it makes it less of my truth; my story.
As Rachel says in the podcast (which I think you should go listen to even if you’re not going through a dark season), no one gets to tell you how to mourn. No one gets to tell you how to handle the things that pop up in your life. Even the therapists that we pay the big bucks don’t instruct us how to deal with our problems. Rather, they help us wade through chaos or mixes of emotions we can’t quite get through on our own.
Truth be told, even as a blogger, there are things in my life that you don’t know about me. I’m a pretty open book, but there are struggles in my life that are no longer relevant to the journey, uplevel, or message I want to spread now! Does that make them any less a part of my story? No. Does someone telling me I don’t have a story make me want to tell them? Still, no.
At the end of the day, when you close all the apps, shut your laptop, and actually power down, you have to be proud of that person laying there. Setting boundaries is one of the healthiest things you can do in any relationship or friendship. It can also be so successful for feeling good about what you’re putting out into the world via social media. Setting boundaries allows you to advocate for yourself. When people try to tear down that wall, a clear boundary is the highest, strongest, fortress you can arm yourself with.
Having trouble with setting boundaries with your online sharing? Want to learn the benefit of setting boundaries? Get in contact with me using any of my socials below – I would love to hear from you!