Hi dear friends,
This week I want to talk some more about boundaries, and why I feel they are so important, especially in the difficult times we are living in today. Often when we think of boundaries, we think of how to keep what we don’t want, out. I hope to encourage you to reframe this definition and look at boundaries as a way to protect the good, and honor what’s sacred.
In short, setting boundaries is the ultimate act of self-care.
A few months ago I was asked to do something that I really didn’t want to do. My intuition said no, my heart pulled back, and deep down I knew that saying no was in my best interest and highest good. I have a history of being a people pleaser and a pushover, and so, despite all my internal warnings, I said yes.
There’s a large part of me who doesn’t like to disappoint and wants to be “liked”. Saying yes when I should have said no left me feeling stressed, anxious, angry, frustrated, out of alignment, distracted, whiny, negative, and out of sorts (amongst many other uncomfortable feelings).
Does this resonate with any of you, too?
I think many of us inflict upon ourselves this stress and anxiety because we think we have to, in order to be liked, accepted, welcomed, or included. The truth is, being a people pleaser and a pushover doesn’t really do anyone any good. People don’t really like you more this way, and ultimately you hurt yourself each and every time you participate in this habit.
Luckily, we can break the habit of people pleasing by cultivating one simple practice into our lives: setting boundaries.
I’ve resisted the idea of setting boundaries for a long, long time, because of my own need to be liked as I stated earlier. In my mind, I believed that the boundaries would scare people away, shut people out, and make me feel more alone.
It’s simply not true.
Boundaries are a form of empowerment, strength, and a way for us to align with our identity, our desires, and where we stand in the world. When you don’t have boundaries, you are sending out a signal that you don’t know what you want, that you’ll take whatever you can get, and that you won’t put up a fight along the way.
When you don’t have boundaries, you feel like you are constantly living in a “doormat” mentality. Setting boundaries is a form of self-respect and self-love. By respecting yourself enough to set the necessary boundaries in your life, you’ll discover a unique sense of freedom and peace of mind.
Right after that situation I mentioned above, I made a promise to myself to get in touch with my boundaries and practice enforcing them. The relief I felt was immediate.
If you are looking to start establishing more healthy boundaries in your life, here are a few helpful tips for you:
- Remember that boundary setting is an act of self-care and preservation
- You don’t have to betray yourself to be likable and worthy of love
- When you know what you want, you’ll know when places and situations aren’t aligned
- Know that it’s okay to say no without an explanation
- Hold close the people in your life who respect you and your boundaries, they are your inner circle
Thank you so much for being here another week, sending you all so much love!
Michelle is Peaceful Mind Peaceful Life's Creative Director and resident writer. She has a degree in Journalism from Indiana University and is also a certified holistic health coach through the Institute for Integrative Nutrition and registered yoga teacher with trainings with Anuttara Yoga Shala and Strala Yoga. Michelle has a deep desire to help people find happiness in all areas of their lives, and truly believes the Peaceful Mind Peaceful Life movement will bring lasting change to the world. Michelle splits her time between Florida and New York City and loves connecting with people from all over the world. If you'd like to contact her, she can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org