Boundaries- How and why to say “NO!” part 1

My opinion on things I believed, were not valid. I took that learning into my life as we all do ( learning’s and beliefs that are unconscious to us show up in our behaviour) and it showed up in my inability to say No! In my lack of ‘standing up for myself’. In my desire to keep the peace, which kept me from telling the truth. My voice I had learned was not important. And the worst part is that I belived it too.

A boundary is similar to the membrane of a living cell in our body. It is not rigid. It is permeable and allows/includes into itself only the ‘stuff’ that enhances or contributes to its health. If a cell recognizes an intruder, or something unhealthy, it pushes that thing out back into the body for excretion. If only we had the same common sense. Boundaries are the lines we draw in the sand that demarcate our territory and the rules of conduct if you want to play within those lines.

They are the words we use to communicate what we need, what we will tolerate and how we would like to be treated.

Honouring ourselves begins with caring for ourselves. It begins with caring for ourselves enough to disallow anything that can hurt us. It can also be the allowing of something in, that shows us respect, honour and appreciation.

The thing that eluded me for so long, is that my life is for me to create. I can set about creating a life filled with experiences and people that support, encourage and inspire or, the opposite of that. And, because I have every right to feel honored it is up to me to reject those people and experiences which don’t make me feel that way. I know that now.

Our life really is the result of all the choices we have made thus far. Our circumstances and the things that happen to us, we cannot control. However, we can influence the way we respond to those conditions. I did not have to tolerate years of sexual violations, but because I did not put down a boundary that said ‘I will not allow this any longer’ I continued to receive more of the same.

No one treats us worse than we treat our self.

In my life for a very long time, I was my worst enemy.

The saying ‘No one treats us worse than we treat our self’ really points to the fact that if I had cared enough for myself, I would not allow mistreatment from others. My relationship at that time merely reflected the neglect that was going on inside. It is also no surprise then that over the years I built up resentment toward my partner. I felt attacked by him when he was clearing his throat. My guns were ready and loaded on the defense. It became unbearable. Even still, I did not place any boundaries down about how I wanted and deserved to be treated. It was my good fortune that he decided to leave the country and I was clear that I was not financially stable enough to join him. If poverty was ever a good thing, it was then. It saved my life. He left and we have never seen each other again.

Resentment is a sign that a boundary has not been placed.

We all have people in our lives that annoy us, some more than others. We can’t choose our family but we can choose our friends and we most certainly can choose our partners. When a partner displays abuse, emotional or physical, for the first time, it is a warning. When it happens a second time, it’s a habit. And if that is the case, it’s time to leave. Our romantic relationships are there to add value in our lives. There to enhance your quality of living. If your partner is not contributing and mainly contaminating your emotional wellness, it is sign it is time for a firm boundary. If I had the wherewithal to speak my mind when I was 18, I would not have spent years trying to recover from the trauma of his abhorrent behaviour. If I had the courage when I was 24, I would not have accepted humbly the order to ‘Shut the f*#* up’ because my partner didn’t feel like hearing my voice. If I was brave enough at 29 I would not have been manipulated and controlled into believing that there was something inherently wrong with me. If only.

Please don’t wait another day before you start speaking up for yourself.