Posted on April 15, 2019 by Origins
Though others can’t see our boundaries, they can hear them and know them through our communication, as well as our actions.
“Set boundaries even when you’re scared, and when it doesn’t feel comfortable to do. Eventually setting boundaries will happen naturally for you,” writes author of Codependent No More, Melody Beattie. Codependency isn’t the only reason we feel intimidated to set boundaries. In a million different ways, it might have been demonstrated to us that separating ourselves from other people, standing up for ourselves, distinguishing our self-worth, asking for our needs to be met, or simply saying “No” brought us great pain, suffering, and feelings of isolation. We start learning lessons about boundaries from a young age from the way other people set them with us, but we don’t learn lessons about what boundaries are, why boundaries matter, and what boundaries we want to set with others in our life. As a result, we live a life full of too-flexible or too-rigid lines separating ourselves from others, our feelings from others, and sometimes our bodies from others.
The idea of setting a boundary, of saying no, or of asking for something different for ourselves, is completely alien to us. We’re afraid of the consequences, both good and bad because the results are so foreign to what we know. Just like Melody Beattie points out, setting boundaries is a practice we take on even when we’re scared or uncomfortable. By continuously setting boundaries, we build our self-esteem, we gain our confidence, and we believe in our worth of having boundaries to begin with. We watch people’s reactions and realize that the people who can’t honor and respect our boundaries have their own pain, their own work to do, and may come to have a different place in our lives. Eventually, boundaries become a natural experience for us, without any issue. Our lives, our relationships, and our recovery improve exponentially, enriching our lives.
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