Happy New Year! We are all expressing this greeting, hoping this year to be better than 2020. Last year was a year many people felt fearful, depressed, and lacking in optimism for the future, for many different reasons.

Some of us lost loved ones, experienced illness in our families, job losses, or some people even missed special events such as graduation ceremonies, proms, or weddings.

It was a devastating year.

These types of occurrences may cause us to question what we can possibly do regarding personal decisions or choices to make 2021 a better year.

While we may not be able to control many events happening around us, I want to challenge you to make personal decisions that can positively impact your own life. One important and effective way of doing this is through setting new boundaries. And through this activity, add more personal happiness and peace to your life.

Let me first define ‘boundary.’ Webster defines the term as “a fixed limit or extent which is defined.” A physical example would be your trees defining the boundary or limit of your property.

Just as the word ‘boundary’ may define our personal property limit, it can also be a term which may define our personal limitations and what we choose to allow in our personal lives.

What might be some advantages to re-defining or changing our personal boundaries? A few reasons might be to keep us safer physically or emotionally, to be healthier, or even to improve relationships with others. Many find after making changes that they feel more inner peace and closer in their spiritual walk with God.

Consider asking yourself a few questions and honestly assess if you may need to make some changes for 2021.

1. Is my schedule “out of control” and, as a result, are my personal relationships suffering?

2. Am I feeling overwhelmed by the stress from negative news and feeling fearful for the future?

3. Am I lacking in personal peace and can’t seem to find time for myself?

I want to offer you a few suggestions to get you back on track by changing your boundaries for 2021. While you may be not be able to change the events of the world, you are capable of making personal changes which can personally improve your own well-being.

1. Establish a dedicated quiet time, preferably 20-30 minutes at the start of each day for prayer, meditation, and reflection. A short devotional reading or a devotional application can be useful. This quiet time can initiate the start of a peaceful beginning, which may positively affect your total wellbeing.

2. Provide a time for physical exercise, which is great for your mental functioning. Ideally, this can also be done early in the morning. Otherwise, challenge yourself to at least go for a walk at lunch or after dinner. Make your health a priority. Seek to get in better eating habits and get a regular health exam. Improving your physical health will lead to a happier and healthier you!

3. Have dedicated time with your family outside of work, homework, television, and cell phone usage. Choose to limit negativity and instead focus on being thankful for each other and enjoying family activities. Choose to begin a new activity that can bring you together as a family. Play, sing, exercise, or worship together. Focus on valuing each family member. We all need appreciation, and nothing speaks louder than establishing time for each other – and making it enjoyable!

I challenge you to create new boundaries for 2021. Choose to limit your own negativity, both in thoughts and actions. Instead, choose to better your own life by putting your faith in God and choosing to focus on positive changes this coming year!

Best wishes for a great 2021!

Author's Bio: 

Linda S. Plunkett, PhD, is the author of Supernatural Rescue: From Broken to Beautiful, a book written about her having undergone brain surgery after a tumor the size of a tennis ball was discovered growing in the frontal lobe of her brain. A licensed counselor, Linda offers private, one-on-one, online (video) counseling sessions at https://www.coachtheworld.com/en/lindaplunkett