An area that many people struggle with is setting personal boundaries, and with maintaining those boundaries in their relationships, day to day without letting others influence them.
If you have no boundaries in place, it could stem from never having learned how, never being enabled to, or being afraid to. It could be because your self-worth has been eroded through neglect, control or abuse, or that you never had the emotional support needed to value your needs.
How does losing – or not having – boundaries impact us?
First and foremost – it’s painful. It’s painful, because we are always giving too much of ourselves away, with no regard for our limits, and people take without giving in return.
It is also exhausting, draining – emotionally, mentally and – as a result – often physically too. All of the energy and drive we have is poured from us into others, or taken from us by others, and we have nothing left in reserve for caring for ourselves or meeting our own needs.
If you keep finding that an environment is leaving you feeling drained, emotionally bruised and demotivated, it’s likely that it’s because your boundaries aren’t in place in that environment, so your energy and emotional health are being depleted by those around you.
Your boundaries are personal to you – and they may change or move over time
We all grow and change in time, and that’s a normal and healthy part of life.
What is also normal and healthy is to have views, values and emotional responses which determine our personal boundaries, and what we are and are not comfortable doing.
If you have been subjected to any kind of controlling behaviour, oppression or abuse then it can be even more challenging to identify your own boundaries, outside of that environment – and all the more difficult to enforce them with the people within that environment. Even once you have left those situations or environments behind, establishing and maintaining your boundaries is difficult, because you’ve not had an opportunity to build and live with them before – so you are unsure even how to start.
Enforcing your boundaries is important
It can be challenging and daunting enforcing your boundaries. Saying “no” to someone who is used to only hearing “yes” from you, and standing firm despite their reaction, is hard – and they may push back and be angry. If they are, that shows that they have been taking advantage of you, and that they are willing to override your wellbeing for their own benefit.
Sometimes when we begin to enforce our boundaries we find that some relationships may be lost – and that can be terribly sad. Unfortunately, some relationships have to be a learning experience for us, and be left behind as we build on our own self-worth and growth – and if someone can’t learn to respect and value your boundaries, and grow with you, then you may need to let them go in order to protect yourself.
I can help you to identify, establish and reinforce your personal boundaries
If you would like some support with boundaries – whether you simply need to build your resilience in order to stand more, or whether you need to start from the beginning by identifying what your boundaries might be, I can help you with the process.
You can also read more about personal boundaries – how they could be eroded, what situations show whether you are being taken advantage of, how to begin to identify and build your own boundaries, and whether it’s ever ok to change your mind (it is!) – on my boundaries website page, where you can also find resources and activities which might help you.
Get in touch with me – you can contact me through this website, on my Facebook page, on my phone number – 07849 037 095 – either as a phone call or via WhatsApp video – or email me on firstname.lastname@example.org – and let me help you to be a happier, more confident self who believes in their own value.