Boundary setting is definitely a process.
You cannot just start randomly weaving posts and rails because you think you need them. They need to line up — which only happens when you understand more about yourself.
I'm working to reinforce my weak and wobbly fence, which helps most of the time. But I will never have a perfect, invincible fence no matter how hard I try.
I have noticed some huge gaps between fence posts — an invitation to walk right in.
No fence. No gate. No boundary.
I think it's because boundary setting is such a risk for me. I potentially have so much to lose. And that scares me.
I know I need a fence so I start building one, but there are people I know too well. Patterns that are familiar. Enabling others to come and go in the name of what I think is empathy. Or maybe it's just guilt.
The all too familiar voice convinces me I'm not allowed to set a boundary there. Or manipulates me into thinking I'm not being loving or kind or compassionate if I build a fence in that spot.
Boundaries take courage and surrender. I cannot fear what someone else's reaction to the boundary will be. Because the boundary isn't about other people, they are about me.
It feels so complicated sometimes.
For me, boundary setting is a big #RiskRejection.
I set some boundaries this week with someone very close to me. And it was so hard. Excruciating actually. And as soon as the words came out of my mouth I started to self-doubt. I felt bad, so I started to question myself. Tried to figure out how I could maybe only build half a fence or maybe the gap there was okay after all.
I have to learn how to sit in this place — where people aren't necessarily going to like my boundaries. Because boundaries change me from people-pleasing yes woman to someone new.
Someone I'm still trying to figure out. Still trying to find.
How do you handle it when someone reacts negatively to a boundary you set?
Amy Sullivan and her #riskrejection link-up.