I have researched and read quite a number of articles and it is surprising that most of them root Boundaries in Singlehood to women. The society has made it seem as though only these boundaries are for single women and not men. However, we do all need boundaries and after talking about Personal Boundaries, what Boundaries in Singlehood do is to help you as a single person know what your limits and guidelines are so as to live your best Single life. So what are these Boundaries in Singlehood? How do I set up Boundaries in Singlehood? Why are Boundaries in Singlehood very important?
What are Boundaries in Singlehood
These are limits and guidelines that are able to help you stick to a certain way of living and that fit you as God desires for you. So am not talking about just being Single and just living any life but actually living an intentional life that honors God in all ways. When I was single, there was a way that I wanted to live the life God has given me and it had to be one that honored Him.
Yes, I made quite a number of mistakes that I would say would have been avoided if I had boundaries! Then I learnt that If I wanted to be honored by the man that I would later on get married to as God brought Him and made it work then I needed to start making decisions in a way that was pleasing to Jesus.
These Boundaries in Singlehood are not just with men or women. It’s not just not playing around or having sex with the opposite sex. Life can’t just revolve around getting that man or woman. These Boundaries in Singlehood can include- Your spiritual journey, Your health habits, Your social habits, Your work life, Your Friendships, Your Relationships, and Your wellbeing.
When it comes to health habits, I realized that when I think about my body, what is the one way that I would like to live that really pleases and honors God from what I choose to eat to sleeping patterns to what I watch and what I wear. Sometimes we don’t get to see the reality of the choices we make each day until we have to regret or make a mistake that costs us later.
Choosing to eat right, to watch what would be inspiring and positive or listening to the music that makes you feeling uplifted may seem too far fetched but it counts in one or two years. I never knew that God was intentional in not only my spiritual walk but also everything about me until I had to choose Boundaries in my Singlehood.
I would say that I chose to be in a Singlehood season during my second year of being in the University. It was an intentional decision to focus on Jesus and really listen to Him about my life and what He wanted me to do with what I had in my hands.
Why I chose this path was because while in High School, I would say I was a staunch believer and always wanted to do right and be in Christian groups that would later on help me understand what it means to love on Jesus.
However after high school, while waiting to get into University, I wanted a taste of what the world presented. I thought it wouldn’t be so bad after all since I was in a girls’ school to actually get closer to boys and really understand them to interact with them.
Well, that brought out a part of me that I didn’t know I had which was: My body is just flesh and it can easily be fooled by feelings and emotions that led me to just fall into a number of flings and hence no boundaries at all!
Immediately I joined university, I realized that I actually didn’t know how to say no and felt guilty if and when I found myself in a situation where I actually have to stand my ground. For me not saying no had led to me wanting to please those around me and seeming like I can actually take in all that people said and even continue to accept whatever it is they told me. It became exhausting but the challenge was, I had created a certain picture in people’s eyes that was not of me but of what I wanted them to see.
And there it was! I started praying and reading the word of God, asking God to show me how I can live an authentic and intentional journey of singlehood. There is when Jesus started to show me how and what boundaries to place in my Single life. He started to show me the importance of that life and how it was precious in His life and why I needed it at that season of my life.
He revealed the parts of me that He desired to break and mold so that I wasn’t just putting barbed wires and electric fences but that I was putting in healthy boundaries in my life. Boundaries in Singlehood had to start with me! It had to start with accepting who I was and wanting what Jesus needed of me and not what I wanted for me or what suited me at that particular time. And hence the journey of Boundaries in Singlehood started.
How to set Boundaries in Singlehood
You may be wondering and asking yourself: So what are these boundaries and where do you start by how do I even set them?
First and foremost, boundaries in Singlehood could include your spirituality. I am a firm believer of Jesus Christ and somehow this has turned my life around. My relationship with Jesus is what sustained my singlehood. Since there was no man around me, I figured, the one person I wanted to fall in love with first before anyone else was Jesus.
I wanted more of Him and less of myself. I hungered and thirst for His presence, His voice, His cover, and His protection. This meant that I protected the time when I needed to spend time with Jesus.
I loved mornings and talking to Him at this time and hence I took this time and even guarded it with going to a hill around the campus I was in. I would walk around to hear Him clearly about what He desired of me. It also meant aside from everyday meditation and devotional time that I would take Jesus retreats to help me spend more time with Jesus and I made it a point to do this quarterly meaning creating a boundary on it.
It also meant listening to music that I needed to be filled more than just barely hear words, hence I chose the worship or praise music which helped me guard my ears to sticking to only what uplifted and inspired me to be better and turn around. Creating boundaries in my spirituality also meant that I had to get choose what I watched. If my eyes were not being transformed by what I saw then I had to look inwardly into what I was watching.
This was a hard one because I love movies but some of them had to go! If it had nude poses for some reason, then that had to be slipped away, but it took a lot of time the same as music but I would go back to God and ask Him to change and transform my heart to what He desired me to listen or watch.
I asked him to move my ears and eyes to what He desired me to see that was transforming more than just watching for fun and that is when I realized that these boundaries worked 4 years later when I left university. So I would ask, Do you think what you are listening to or watching or believing right now as a single person is pleasing and pushing you to your maker or is it pulling you away slowly by slowly?
Secondly, boundaries in singlehood could include health in terms of your emotional being and physical being which are parts of who we are. While developing boundaries in Singlehood, there are parts of us that desire what we want and what we feel at that particular time.
For example, while eating healthy in terms of more fruits and vegetables may seem too much, it can help you curb different diseases other complications later on in life. If you would like to get into eating healthy it would mean creating boundaries and choosing to eat those foods that would keep you stronger and healthier. This takes intentional living.
One thing I have learned about eating healthy is to also pray that God would curb and remove in me the desire to crave for any foods that would, later on, lead to complications in my body meaning if I saw soda and I had the option of taking water, I would quickly choose drinking water. If there were processed and junk food or deep-fried food versus boiled or traditional foods, as a boundary, I would quickly choose that over the junk food.
This does not happen in a day. It takes time and a lot of discipline but then if you are consistent that you start to see the results. If you had a problem with gas every time you take sodas, then you stop; at the end of the month you notice that you actually feel much better.
This also goes for exercise. If you are lazy or would just not get time to do that then look at 10 minutes or even 5 minutes as a start of doing stretches every day. Then if someone is to ask you whether to go watch a movie or work out during your time allocated to do so then you know that when you value it then you create time for it.
Our emotional being is constantly raging for more in terms of feelings. The aspect of desiring to be loved or honored or cherished. Sometimes this emotional state would mean journaling or taking a walk. Going for a spa date or visiting a therapist every month or taking a road trip to clear your mind. When you are in an emotional state, there is so much that goes on in your mind.
I know for me: If and when I want to declutter: Reevaluating, Reviewing, Rearranging, Refocusing or Recharging anything that would be occupying your mid that’s not adding value or helping you at the moment and it needs a shift.
Healing emotionally would mean taking a break from the everyday hustle and bustle. It means that I actually take more time in a journal and this has helped me keep sane. It sometimes also means I speak to a confidant about what would be going on and being more intentional in being vulnerable to be okay.
If you are going through any mental situation, then one boundary around this while being single means getting to create a support system or a doctor who can walk with you through that journey.
I remember I only got to know of this boundary while single when I had just started working and I realized aside from praying and reading the word, there were quite a number of things that I had not really dealt with and that meant getting regular appointments with my therapist.
It meant that I had to be honest with myself and know that I was not okay and I needed to take time to get better as a person. I didn’t really need to be at my worst to go see the therapist but what drove me was the fact that I desired to be whole before I got into a relationship. Part of it was that I desired to deal with any baggage that I had hence my sessions being quite important and quite paramount to being a boundary in my singlehood.
Thirdly are your social habits. They say that bad company corrupts good morals and sometimes creating boundaries in your singlehood means letting go of some friendships and creating new ones. One thing that I did while in university as a single person was to ask God for friendships that would last.
Friendships that He orchestrated and planned for me. It was quite easy to relate then at that particular season because we all had the same drive and the same desire of pursuing Jesus in what we did.
Later on, when these friendships faded, I knew that most probably that season came to an end and that I needed to move on to what God desired in terms of friendships. This has helped a lot while creating boundaries as a single person in these areas because this is what gets people move in the wrong direction knowing the people they are walking with. It would also mean as a social being is getting to know what you are doing with the people who you interact with.
Do you have boundaries of your time to be able to say no. When you get manipulated, are there areas where you feel you would need a break to be able to know why that may be happening? Choosing friends would mean self-evaluation of where you are headed and what your values and morals are.
This goes the same with the opposite sex; if the men or women you hang around with have no respect or even mindfulness of who you are as a lady or a man, then maybe choices have to be made in order to get closer to the people who are intentional in pointing you towards Jesus.
Fourth is your work life. While singlehood may be a place to get closer with other people, it can also get one to get immersed into work and not want anything to do with the outside world or even get to a point where it controls your life. Work is a gift as much as is singlehood. However, there has to be boundaries in regards to having a work life balance. Unfortunately, most of the time the family area suffers a lot when we don’t have work boundaries as a single person.
It can get to a point where workplaces become a hub of sexual harassment or bullying. If we are so focused on the job and never minding who we are as individuals, then we get to a point where the very same things that hurt us we get addicted to them. Boundaries as a single person come with knowing how to spend quality time with yourself and not carrying work home.
This forms a boundary when your bosses know that you would not and cannot take work home. The other aspect of work is that you are able to take lunch and tea breaks to revitalize your mind and keep it active to listen and ponder. Creating time to meditate and listen to Jesus so that as you work to know what He desires of you so as to take priority what He desires of you at the work place.
Why are boundaries important in Singlehood
- They help us understand ourselves better and in a clearer way to know what we like or dislike
- Boundaries in Singlehood help to know how to live an intentional and authentic life as a single person.
- These boundaries are a place for one to determine the next years of their lives through making the right decisions for them as individuals.
- They help us shed off what would not be necessary for our lives compared to what would be needed at that particular time and season of life.
- It helps prepare one as they start to think of dating and marriage or determine whether they would really want to get married and what they need to work of as of now to be whole for later.
- Boundaries in Singlehood enable one to know what their morals, values and even purpose of their lives as they get to focus on themselves and keep working towards being their better versions of themselves.