Boundaries are often misconstrued as something that keeps people out of our lives, but the truth is: establishing healthy boundaries is what strengthens our relationships. It allows us to take responsibility for our own behaviors, and to let others do the same.

Boundaries define us. They define what is me and what is not me. A boundary shows me where I end and someone else begins, leading me to a sense of ownership. Knowing what I am to own and take responsibility for gives me freedom. Taking responsibility for my life opens up many different options. Boundaries help us keep the good in and the bad out. Setting boundaries inevitably involves taking responsibility for your choices. You are the one who makes them. You are the one who must live with their consequences. And you are the one who may be keeping yourself from making the choices you could be happy with. We must own our own thoughts and clarify distorted thinking.”
― Henry Cloud

There are a few different types of boundaries we want to dig into:

1. Physical/Body

This is the easiest type of boundary to understand. It relates to our personal space, and the power we have over our own bodies. Everyone has different levels of comfort when it comes to physical boundaries – some people are huggers, kissers and hand-holders, while other people do not like to be touched by others at all (especially in public).

When your physical boundaries are crossed, it can feel like you don’t have ownership over your own body. This can range in severity, but is one of the most basic acts of abuse when taken too far.

Please note that if you or anyone you know is being physically abused, help is always available. The National Domestic Violence Hotline is open 24 hours a day and 7 days a week. Their phone number is 800-799-7233, or you could simply text START to 88788.

Physical boundaries are also related to taking care of your physical needs like needing rest, food or water. Some examples of ways to implement your physical boundaries are:

– “I’m not a big hugger. I’m more of a handshake person”
– “I don’t want you to touch me like that.”
– “I feel tired. I am going to rest for a little while.”
– “I am allergic to ___, so I can’t have that in my home.”
– “I’m hungry. I’m going to get something to eat.”
– “If my door is closed, knock before walking in.”

2 .Emotional/Feelings

Our feelings are our bodies signaling to us how we are doing. They are like the “check engine” light in our cars. When we feel angry or sad about something, that is our body signaling to us that something isn’t right. This gives us an opportunity to pinpoint what is going on and make whatever changes that are necessary to improve our situation. It is important for us to remember that we are responsible for our own feelings, and it is also important for us to remember that we are not responsible for the feelings of others.

This doesn’t mean it’s okay to be hurtful on purpose, but it does mean that you shouldn’t let someone else’s feelings keep you from doing what you believe to be right. When we neglect our own feelings and take on the responsibility of others, we are crossing both our own boundaries and theirs. It is when we take ownership over our own feelings, and are able to stay honest with others that we are capable of creating meaningful relationships with depth.

3. Financial

 Have you ever had someone ask you to borrow money? Or have you been asked out to fancy dinners, bachelor/bachelorette parties, or other social events that you did not have the budget for? When we decline these offers to protect our financial assets, we are setting a healthy boundary. Financial health looks different to everyone but remember to not feel guilty when you are protecting yours. Also, if you are planning your next birthday trip to Cabo – don’t take it personally if a friend or a relative has to decline your invitation.

4. Intellect/Thoughts

Intellectual boundaries include our thoughts and beliefs. When we own our own thoughts, we are establishing our own identity. We have a right to believe in what we choose, and a right to change our minds when we choose. We cross this boundary when we take responsibility for someone else’s thoughts or dismiss them altogether.

It’s important to remember that establishing healthy boundaries is an act of kindness. If doing this is something you have not put thought into before, it might not feel that way at first. It might be uncomfortable to speak up for yourself when you feel like your boundaries are being crossed, or to not be available to a friend when you are in the middle of your own crisis. The truth is:  people who love you will want to know when you are feeling hurt or overwhelmed. If you hide those feelings from your loved ones, you are not giving them a chance to love you in return. Neglecting yourself to show up for others could also lead to resentment and frustration, which will drive a wedge in your relationships.

Remember to have some grace for yourself, though.

The idea is to treat our friends and our neighbors the same way we treat ourselves, and vice versa! Because when we take care of ourselves, we are capable of truly being there for others. Also, when someone seems to be setting a boundary with you – try not to take it personally. When we learn to respect what others need, our relationships have the opportunity to flourish.

Now that you have a better understanding of what different types of boundaries there are to consider, we hope it helps you establish your own. Doing so will help you develop a greater sense of identity, build your self esteem, avoid burnout and enhance both your emotional and mental health. It’s not only good for you, but also good for the people around you.


Setting goals

Go for Your Goals
Start goal setting today

Setting goals is the first step in turning the invisible into the visible.”
– Tony Robbins

You are ready to make a change, good for you! Step one: set some goals. Committing to specific goals can be daunting for many reasons, including the fear of failure. It is normal to feel this way, but don’t doubt your capability. We are here to help you succeed.

What do you want to accomplish? Do you want to improve your overall health? Do you want to look and feel better? Do you want to feel more at peace and sleep better?

Think about reasonable, specific, personal goals you would like to achieve. Visualize them and write them down. Research shows that writing down goals increases the likelihood of achieving them. Under your goal, write out a checklist of small steps you can take towards accomplishing it.

For example, My goal is to lose 3 pounds this week, in order to achieve this, I will:

  • Attend an exercise class three times this week
  • Walk 30 minutes a day
  • Ask a friend to walk or go to the gym with me
  • Not eat after 7 pm
  • Only drink 1 soda a day
  • Ride bikes with my daughter twice a week
  • Stretch or exercise every time I watch TV
  • Read the ZOË inspirational packet

Tape your goal list on your kitchen wall, bathroom mirror, or a place where you see it several times a day. Leave room on the paper to add additional small steps as you accomplish more and more. These specific goals are important because they enable you to see that actual steps are being taken toward your goals. Even if you don’t accomplish all of these small steps, don’t feel discouraged, just check off the ones you did complete and feel good about the steps you did take so far.

Tell others about your goals. When you share your goals, you are more likely to be strengthened in your commitment. It also allows others the opportunity to show support or encouragement. Tell a friend, mentor, family member…they might be working on similar goals and you can encourage one another!



How to Stay Motivated

Zig Ziglar said, “People often say that motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither does bathing – that’s why we recommend it daily.” 

Some days you wake up motivated, and some days those negative thoughts or hopelessness creep in.  Today, we’re going to discuss how you can get yourself going and stay motivated during your ZOË journey! 

The secret is to start small and build momentum through the day.  It’s just like a train – it starts slowly with huffing and puffing but it’s hard to stop once it’s moving!     

Let’s talk about what drives YOU.  It’s important to identify what makes this journey worth it to you so that you have the vision to actually implement changes in your life.  Take a second and jot down why it’s important for you to make this life change. It might be simple – you may write, ‘I want to feel better.’  Or ‘I want to look better.’  Or like one of our recent success stories, who decided to make his commitment after having gained over 400 pounds and had been warned by his doctor that he was at risk of death, he simply wrote, ‘For my kids.’  Whatever your reason, write it down now. 

Once you have written that down, place this note where you will see it often each day – your bathroom mirror, on your computer screen, wherever you will be reminded most of WHY you are on your journey.   

Next, find someone to hold you accountable for keeping your commitment to yourself… or if they are on a similar journey, there’s nothing wrong with a little friendly competition!  Remember, this is what you want and you’re worth it!  Also, don’t beat yourself up if you stumble, that just makes you feel less motivated. It’s better to just nudge yourself back on track and build up your momentum again. Start talking positively to everyone about how far you’ve come, and what you’re doing next to keep going.

Another thing to remember is to not compare yourself to other people.  Your success story is yours —own it.  Don’t compare yourself with others or against people in magazines.  Instead, look at how far you have already come in your journey.  Look at yourself in the mirror and congratulate yourself on your running tab of success – you can say, ‘I lost that many pounds in just that many days?’ Give yourself credit when you accomplish a goal. Social media or weight loss sites with community pages are great places to share your successes and get support. When you feel proud of yourself, you increase your motivation.   

Lastly, reward yourself! Treat yourself to a movie or a manicure or something you wouldn’t normally buy. You deserve it. Keep up the good work and keep going.


Staying on Track

Staying on Track

What happens if you cheat while on the ZOË Wellness Program?

Losing weight is not easy. In order to lose weight, you have to really commit to the ZOË Wellness Program and follow the steps. With that being said, we realize that no one is perfect (we’re all human!), so we’ve developed a few strategies to help you overcome any minor setbacks you have while on the ZOË program so that you keep progressing towards your goal.

When you come in for your follow-up appointments, we will compare your new body analysis to your original. We’ll look at what has changed and we’ll ask you questions to see if you have been following the protocols and then tweak a few things to make the program work better for you. We will offer you a solution that fits your needs and is based on your personal strengths and weaknesses.

When you have your 30-day weigh-in, we will focus on ways to reintroduce the things we restricted while you were on the program as well as teach you OUR cheating system. Yes! We actually have a system specifically designed for cheating. No person should feel they have to deprive themselves all the time in order to keep the weight off.

Going on vacation? Want to have cake on your birthday? No problem! We have a very simple 3-day plan that will help you compensate for any weight gain that happened during your “cheat” so that you are able to keep the weight off while enjoying your life to the fullest!