“Daring to set boundaries is about having the courage to love ourselves even when we risk disappointing others.” -Brene Brown
Every few years my relationships and living situations would change and my life would go into a cycle of no structure.
It was a challenge for me to not only create, but adhere to some sort of functional, healthy schedule.
I didn’t realize the need to make a conscious effort of spending time with family and friends. Or to make it a regular habit of exercising (even if that meant a 15-20 minute walk.)
I also always thought that personal boundaries meant my relationship between me and others…until I began to realize that it was really more between myself and my core values.
Does any of this sound familiar? If someone asked you what your core values were right nowwhat would you say?
In case you missed my previous article to this one, How to Tell If You Have Poor Personal Boundaries, I asked,
How do you tell if you have poor personal boundaries?
– You don’t speak up about how you feel or what you think about things (especially if you’re mistreated).
– You agree with others when you feel like disagreeing.
– You say “yes” when you really want to say “no.”
– You feel taken for granted by other people.
– You feel the need to be liked.
– You feel guilty when other people are unhappy (as if it’s your fault).
– Deep down inside you know you worry about what others think of you
So now what, Dani??
Here is a list of things I have learned along my journey that may support you:
1. Identify your core values. Who are you? What are your beliefs? What are you comfortablewith? What do you like? What do you disagree with? Knowing your core values will support you in communicating who you are more effectively to others.
2. Love on yo’self! Take yourself out to eat, something that you’ve been craving. Or give yourself time to unwind and relax. Meditate. Color. Be kind to yourself the same way you would be kind to your best friend. Taking care of yourself sends the message [to yourself] of self worth, respect, and love.
3. Practice saying “no.” You don’t need to be rude; saying things like ‘no thanks,’ or ‘I’m busy,’ or ‘next time‘ supports you in honoring your own needs.
4. Not overcommitting! I had the terrible habit (and sometimes still do) of overcommitting — agreeing to too many things (see number 3, right?) and then feeling resentful towards the people I agreed to because I’d end up burning myself out …in order to keep the word I mistakenly gave to too many people.
5. Letting go of toxic, unhealthy relationships. I know. This isn’t easy. But once you do it, you’ll make room for some amazing people!! I remember the pain and loss I experienced when I lost a lot of what I considered at the time to be ‘friends.’ Everyone around me used drugs and it was hard not to as well. Letting go of those relationships, as unhealthy as they were, left me feeling alone, rejected, and like I didn’t belong. Since then though, I’ve created deep, meaningful relationships, with new people who are in my same frequency. My life has began to feel fulfilling.
Start with these practices and you’ll begin to experience a sense of empowerment…because you’ll be standing up for yourself. Voicing how you really feel. Saying what you mean and meaning what you say.