Do you put everyone’s needs and feelings before your own? So much so, that you find it nearly impossible to draw comfortable boundaries in your relationships or are you afraid that if you do say no or assert your wishes, that you might be jeopardizing the relationship?
Have you ever considered that part of the problem might be the fact that you were never taught how to draw effective boundaries and when you couple that with being a highly sensitive person, you get A BOUNDARY DISASTER?
In this week’s Real Love Revolution episode, I’m talking to all my sensitive folks – the empaths, the highly sensitive people and codependents, about drawing boundaries and why it’s so difficult for you to do so. Being in tune with other people’s feelings, desires and wants, creates an even greater challenge when trying to create clean, clear boundaries.
In this week’s video, I cover:
- Defining different types of boundaries
- Why it’s difficult for empaths and codependents to set boundaries
- How to effectively begin boundary setting
- What good boundaries look like
Let’s go over some little known (but important) information: types of boundaries.
We obviously have physical boundaries, which are easy to distinguish: cars, objects, and material possessions. So essentially there is an unexpressed boundary around our toothbrushes, in that we expect that no one else will use our toothbrush. Boundaries can also be personal space, privacy, and your body. Some people don’t like to hug, that’s a boundary. Mental boundaries are your thoughts, ideas, and opinions. Other boundaries include emotional boundaries, sexual boundaries and spiritual boundaries, all of which I discuss in this week’s video. The point, which is difficult for empaths and codependents to understand, is that you have a right to have boundaries around all of these things but it’s up to you to create them.
Highly sensitive people spend so much time putting others wants, needs and desires before their own that deep self-knowledge may not be present. Avoiding other people’s disapproval or disappointment has been paramount for so long that it will take a little time and effort to shift that ingrained thought pattern.
However, it is possible.
The first order of business in setting effective boundaries when you are sensitive or a codependent is just immediately stopping the “auto yes.” Because if you can just stop automatically saying yes to things that you really don’t want to do, you are stopping the process and creating space to mindfully decide. Next, is actually saying no with kindness and grace. For more boundary setting techniques and tips, including helpful language for how to say no, download the full Boundary Setting Cheat Sheet now.
So what are good boundaries? Good boundaries are not taking responsibility for things that are not yours (feelings, emotions, situations, etc.), and taking responsibility for things, situations, emotions that are yours. I want you to understand the value, especially if you are codependent or highly sensitive or an empath…you having good boundaries will uplevel every single solitary relationship in your life. It is not you being mean, bitchy, or selfish. It is truly an act of self-love and ultimately creates the space for healthy relationships.
Terri Cole is a licensed psychotherapist, transformation coach, and an expert at turning fear into freedom. Sign up for Terri’s weekly Newsletter, check out her blog and follow her on Twitter.
Image courtesy of Hernán Piñera.