Relationships Are Everything But Are We Becoming Relationally Saturated?
Today's culture calls for constant communication on various platforms giving us the opportunity to build many relationships which are tremendous for our businesses and nonprofits. However, we are becoming relationally saturated on many levels, which sometimes leads to unhealthy boundaries, which can also lead to imbalances in our everyday lives. More on unhealthy boundaries in the future.
With all of these multi-level relationships, how do we manage properly? First, let me get to the root if why this matters, and let me know if you're in the same boat:
BEING RELATIONALLY SATURATED HAS LED TO THE FOLLOWING:
01 | Feeling overwhelmed: not only do we try to keep up with our email inbox, we're in constant communication through various platforms like Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, text messages, and the list goes on. Which person do we respond to first?
02 | Feeling Guilty: because we don't want to get distracted from priority assignments, we sometimes hesitate hitting reply to an email or text, which sometimes leads to responding in a few days (or sometimes weeks). As the days go on and we're reminded of, "Oh! I need to email that person..." The feelings of guilt can creep in. This is also true when we want to return the favor when someone retweets us or likes something on our social media posts (or maybe this is just a people-pleaser mentality, hmm...maybe more on that in the future).
03 | Feeling Tired: I don't know about you, but I find myself sitting at my computer from 10 pm - midnight desperately trying to respond to communication (while exhausted), so I can feel free in the AM to focus on other projects and deadlines. To my surprise in the morning, there could 10 or more brand new email messages (not including social media communication) that need my attention.
04 | Feeling Worried: What's really important in all of this is not breaking commitments, but when we're overcommitted, we naturally have to. The problem then becomes that we are now not a person of our word since we broke commitments.
HOW TO MANAGE BETTER:
01 | Manage expectations: When the opportunity arises, we need to be honest about our schedule. Be upfront with friends and family about how we're trying to manage everything, and hopefully, they will understand. I think we all try to look like "we have it together" but who cares - we don't! I think when we are vulnerable about what's really going on, then people go a little easier on us. If they don't, just remember that we have to do what's best for us.
02 | Accept the fact that we are not responsible for people's happiness or emotional experiences. What I mean by this is that we can do everything in our power to make it all good and right, but at the end of the day, we cannot control someone's emotional reaction.
03 | Let go of the idea that we will never disappoint anyone. It’s going to happen. When that ball of uncertainty rises in you because you may have possibly disappointed someone, let it go. If you think you need to make it right, then have a conversation. At the end of the day, we will all disappoint each other in some way, and we somehow get over it because life goes on.
04 | Say “no”: Be really sure about the commitments we make. It is easier to keep commitments when we are not over-committed. This makes us more of a person of our word.
At the end of the day, just like in the recently published article via Conscious Magazine titled To Start Great Movements We Must Be Whole First, we need to honest about how much we can handle. We need to even possibly make it a point to pivot the way we do things, or just be okay with slowing down. When we become tired (yet restless) and experience mixed emotions, then we don’t become our best selves....our service unto others requires our best selves.
FROM THE EDITOR
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