We talk about boundaries a lot in my practice. Living in relationship requires us to have them. And we are all in relationship- with ourselves and with each other. But what if we don't know what our boundaries are? Or how to share them?
The Oxford Languages dictionary defines 'boundary' as:
a line that marks the limits of an area; a dividing line OR
a limit of a subject or sphere of activity
Now I imagine that most, if not all, are familiar with the word, and can agree on the above definitions. So maybe it isn't so much the definition of the word, but rather how you identify and express it or apply it that complicates the word.
I see boundaries as what we each must have in place for our own personal sense of well being: physically, mentally, and emotionally. And to be the contribution to Oneness that we came here to be.
Yet many of us learned that boundaries can be messy, can cause conflict, make others feel uncomfortable, be hard to maintain, get run over, etc. and that all this suffering was to be avoided. Past experience, or inherited emotional DNA can also impact our ability to identify, share, or maintain a boundary. And so many of us fall in to judgement about ourselves and the other and even about our boundaries and we cut ourselves off from this muscle. We cut ourselves from love and Oneness.
So what if one of the greatest actions of love, IS to set boundaries? To be honest with ourselves about what we need and would like and clearly express that to another. Boundary setting and expression can feel like a form of vulnerability. Yet when we let go of the past, our limiting thoughts, feelings, and considerations around boundaries, around love, we are free to create the life and experiences we desire.
When I have boundaries in place that make me feel safe, seen, heard, and acknowledged, I can be vulnerable not just with myself, but with the other. Creating and expressing a boundary is saying YES to me. And this opens doors to greater intimacy and connection.
Boundaries create the space for us to lovingly acknowledge ourselves, and the other. It says I care enough about each of us to take responsibility for my own feelings and recognize my choices in this moment, while allowing you the dignity of your own experience.
When I say YES, others may hear NO. And, as my mother taught me, both things can be true. One does not detract from the other because their experience is not mine and I can only live in mine. To step in to another's shoes and assume their experience is taking away their power to live the offering of the moment, or their ability to change any part of it for themselves, or even to acknowledge what they are choosing.
And I care enough about us, to be part of creating a different reality, no matter what that may look like. Regardless of what has come before, change is possible.
Saying YES to me is living in alignment with my truth, with honor, and dignity. I am stepping in to my power, respecting myself, and I am saying YES to all beings when I choose from this place. I am acknowledging the space of the other, who is really part of the Oneness I am, and not judging or trying to alter them in any way. I am choosing my life to be in harmony with that Oneness, and others. I am choosing love. And I allow them to choose what they will. No judgement.
Taking this further, if we are each together in this moment together, what is the learning here for me? How can I show up as the infinite being I am? What kind of contribution can I be to the unfolding of consciousness here? What can I let go of and move forward with grace and forgiveness, or what can I embrace that will create a different future for me than the one I am currently seeing?
Notice, it is not about:
How can I avoid hurting or upsetting the other's person's feelings and still get what I want?
or How can I make this work for everyone?
How can I fix this or make this go away?
There's no 'what if they don't like me, or what if they are sad, or mad, or upset that I said or did this....or what if I'm wrong....
My experience is that most people want to respect my boundaries, IF they know what they are. It's my job to share them.
When we let other people's actions dictate how we feel or what we choose, we give away our power. When we expect so much of the other person to make it right for us because we are trying so hard to make it right for them, we take away the possibility of their experience and cause our own suffering, rather than allowing them to live in their choices, and us to recognize ours. And this just leads to resentment. And when we take that choice from another, we are robbing ourselves of our own opportunity for healing as well.
So how do we activate this love muscle, called boundaries?
We start by saying YES. Yes to Me. Yes to love, yes to boundaries that make me feel safe. Yes to space to wander around in where I can be and feel the infinite being that I am.
And we start here and now.
I say YES, to quiet and rest, and I choose not to host Thanksgiving.
I say YES to my feelings and I give them space to be here. I cry to mourn the loss I am feeling, rather than stay busy and ignore it.
I say YES to my body and I go to bed early, rather than stay up late watching Netflix.
I say YES to allowing myself to be right where I am, rather than trying to change it because another is uncomfortable with how I feel. (or I am).
I say YES, and I give my tenant notice.
I say YES, and I raise the rent.
I say YES, and I ask for a commitment from my partner.
I say YES and I ask for a raise.
And YES, I will lay on the couch with a good book, rather than write this blog because it feels good to me.... :-)
I say YES and I allow you to have your response, your feelings, your experience, your lesson, your opportunity to make a different choice, your opportunity to heal, and to grow. And I say YES to me.
I say YES to what else is possible....YES to love. And notice how the world around me changes when I say YES.
What will you say YES to today? How will you be the contribution you are for yourself, and Oneness?
And if it isn't clear: "What else is possible here that I'm not getting"? or
"What do I need to say YES to"?
Infinitely yours, in love and boundaries,
PS. If past experience is weighing heavily on you and keeps you from saying YES and sharing or even identifying boundaries, consider a Holistic Intuitive Health Session with me. Let's release the old baggage so you can experience the magic and contribution that you are, and the abundant gifts this Universe has for you.