I struggle with boundaries, and I know I'm not the only one

I struggle with boundaries, and I know I’m not the only one

by Lindsay on November 28, 2012

in Attitude, Inspiration, Motivation

Okay, I’ll admit it: I can be a bit of a pushover sometimes. I’ll say yes when I really want to say no. I’ll give someone an inch and then let them take that mile when they’re testing the boundaries to see what they can get away with. There’s the word of the day: boundaries. Why is it such a struggle for me? Some of my friends just seem so damn good at saying no. They are naturals at demanding respect from others – the “not takin’ shit from no one” type.

Me? I’m the girl who used to smile at you while you were pissing on my leg and telling me it’s raining. Okay, maybe I’m not that bad, but I used to be. Really. 

Creating healthy boundaries is one of the most difficult things to do, but it’s also one of the most important. Boundaries are about how you talk to others and how others talk to you. So basically, they can make your life easy, or they (or the lack of them) can make your life hard.

Do you have a hard time saying ‘no’ to someone for fear of upsetting someone? 

For women in particular, saying “no” is a no-no in our society. Sometimes it’s easier to say ‘yes’ than deal with the anxiety of worrying about making someone mad or upset when they hear our ‘no’. Tell me I’m not the only one who has done this: I say no to someone’s invitation or question or whatever it is, and then I feel worried that I’ve pissed them off or upset them! Truth is, they probably stop thinking about it the moment they hear your ‘no’. Wouldn’t you rather hear the truth from someone rather than hear their insincere yes?

I heard this the other week and it resonated so deeply: True compassion is the capacity to tell someone NO on through the eyes of your soul. What does that mean? More in a moment! 

Let’s face it – most parents don’t always teach us about good boundaries. Anyone have a Mom who could never say ‘no’ to anyone asking her favors? Or a Dad who violated your privacy by reading your journal?  The way you were modeled with boundaries is the same way you go out and violate others with their boundaries, too.

Healthy boundaries are about carrying yourself in a way that shows that you have self-regard.

The #1 factor to creating boundaries is esteem – how you feel about yourself has everything to do with your capacity to say “this is my boundary, this is my limit”. Esteem is about checking in with the soul and being anchored with yourself in such a way to know how something feels.

If you have no self-regard you won’t care if someone violates your boundaries. You think – underneath it all – that you’re not worth it. Believe me, I have been there. It doesn’t feel good. Often times when you’re in that head space you don’t even realize it. But I’ve since gotten out of that mentality I feel like a new person (and I am!). I’m not afraid to say no anymore. I respect my boundaries and the boundaries of others as well.

In our culture, compassion = sacrificing the self to something or someone else. But is that really even true? No, of course not. If you truly care about someone and want what is best for them as well as yourself you will simply say no. If you don’t want to do something but you end up doing it anyway, you don’t do it from your heart and soul. And that’s not doing anyone any good!

Energy doesn’t lie. Ever. 

Energy always emits the truth. So if you don’t have a strong sense of self-regard and what your boundaries are, anybody on the street can read that in your energy field. They may not be able to verbalize it, but they DO feel it. Everyone who comes across your path is sensing you out and feeling out “how far can I go with this person?”

Making changes

If you’re reading this and feeling like a doormat who wants to change, be ready for big changes. If you’re going to change, you will get some flak – people like the way you are. Do yourself a favor – if you’re going to set a boundary with someone – don’t set it until you’re willing to go to the measures you NEED to enforce the boundary. Don’t set an ultimatum if you don’t really mean it. Like children, people know when you’re bs’ing and they know when you really mean it.

As your esteem grows and you start to renovate the way you feel about yourself, your boundaries also change. How you relate to people shifts as well. Your life changes for the better.

Beginning today, promise yourself that you will honor your own boundaries and those of others. It’ll change your life for the better. I promise you. And I’m working on it right along with you.

Do you have any advice for setting (and sticking to) boundaries? How are you with setting boundaries and respecting those of others?  Share your experiences with us! 

Don’t forget that next week Julie Langdon Barrett (A Clear Sign) and I (Two Intuitives, as we are known and well…just are!) are recording our Connect With Your Spirit Guides and Angels special group session for just $75 as a big Thank You to our Readers – the deadline to sign up is Saturday December 1, 2012 – so make sure to reserve your space to get dedicated time from BOTH of us in getting your questions answered.  We’ll be speaking to your Spirit Guides and Angels, pulling Life Purpose and Animal Totem cards, reading your aura, and having a lot of fun. Email me at lindsay@thedailyawe.com to reserve your spot!

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{ 9 comments }

Jennifer Flint ~ The Aura Reader November 28, 2012 at 11:57 pm

I think I’m pretty good with both, because I understand what it’s like to be sensitive and to need some personal space in order to feel peaceful and healthy. Thus I tend to respect the space and energy limits of other people, as well as my own.

I’m also learning to set energetic boundaries when I go out in public, to help prevent other people’s auras from draining my energy, even unintentionally! It takes a bit of attention, but it’s definitely worth the effort. And as always, meditation is a big help with all of it. :)

Lindsay December 1, 2012 at 8:22 am

Energetic boundaries – something I hadn’t even thought about but are SO important! That could be an article in and of itself. You should write it, oh wise one!

I need to learn how to be a better meditator. Your posts about all of its benefits and how it makes you feel better always give me the niggle to do it more than I do…I will start today! :)

Gerry May 27, 2014 at 6:06 pm

It’s always a relief when someone with obvious exiterpse answers. Thanks!

Julie Barrett November 29, 2012 at 5:25 am

Ha! Have I ever experienced this – “I say no to someone’s invitation or question or whatever it is, and then I feel worried that I’ve pissed them off or upset them!” What? You mean not everyone acts this way? This is not the common, natural instinct, default response?? It’s no wonder I ran into the biggest gossips and undermining backstabbers in the workplace, is it?

I started working on boundaries around this time last year. Sure enough, the very same person who pushed my buttons and caused all the mayhem did so again this year – by not showing up to Thanksgiving. So we kind of fought from a distance. Actually I might have to write about that one now that you made me think of it in that way. Great article!

Lindsay December 1, 2012 at 8:21 am

You have actually been a model to me in the past few months re: boundaries. I feel like you are far ahead of me in regards to respecting your own boundaries and being able to say “no”, so I’ve been learning from you!

You should definitely write about your button-pusher. Good stories in that. :)

Anne McCarroll November 29, 2012 at 6:50 am

Oh, boy. I’ve got A Boundary Tester. She exhausts me-but this T Giving I shocked her and drew the line in the sand, and I was very surprised to see her literally run away! I know she will be back…we are related, so she can’t really run too far! Learning boundaries is tough. But the reward is unparalleled: self esteem(as you note)which is like a plate of birthday cake and ice cream.

Lindsay December 1, 2012 at 8:20 am

Wooohooo!!! I’m super happy and proud of you for doing that! I can’t believe she’ literally ran away. LOL That’s just awesome and must’ve felt so good. Here’s to keeping it up for Christmas, too!

Patti Foy | Lightspirited Being December 4, 2012 at 12:10 pm

Hi Lindsay! It’s been awhile since I’ve been blog-hopping and so glad I came by. (Partly thought of you because someone said she was directed to me through your blog — thank you!)

I loved this post. I can’t help thinking that for me, sometimes that voice in my head is the one I have to say no to. It’s the one that lists all the “shoulds” all the time, you know that one? 😉 I’m always so much happier, productive, and feel like more of a blessing to the world when I can follow my joy instead of my shoulds.

Thanks for the excellent reminder and helping me recognize that this morning.

All my best to you, sweet sister!

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