Boundaries. So important. Boundaries. So hard. I used to think that boundaries meant distancing, closing the heart, loving less, shutting out… Now I know it’s the opposite. Love without boundaries is weak, and non-accountable, and less that what it has the potential to be.
If you say yes to everyone and everything all the time, eventually your yes is eroded. When you take a breath, listen in before you respond to any request I will know that you’re following your intuition and being real with me. When your no is clear, I’ll believe in your yes.
Some of the most powerful people I know have really clear boundaries. They also happen to be the most loving people I know, because they don’t deplete themselves in the false pretense of service. When they serve or give they do so from an overflowing heart, from abundance of energy and love and care. Brene Brown found in her research that the most compassionate people are the same people that have the strongest boundaries. Because you can only give what you have and boundaries is self-compassion. It might be surprising but also so obvious when you think about it.
No one else can be responsible for your boundaries but you. No one will thank you for not having any. And no one else but you knows where they are.
I believe we all need to practice, I know I do. But the next time someone asks you to do something, give something or go somewhere; take a pause. You always have five seconds to spare. Take a deep breath and listen in; is this aligned with what you need or have to give right now? If you don’t feel a ‘hell, yes!’ or a ‘No.’ right away, ask to get back to the person. They can usually stand to wait a couple of hours or a day.
And remember, ‘No.’ is a full sentence. If you want to put a lot of effort into explaining yourself, you can, but you don’t have to. Usually it just mashes your no in with a lot of maybe’s and unnecessary words and you end up being unclear.
When your no is clear, I’ll believe in your yes.
With all my love,