In today’s episode, I’m discussing boundaries. This topic came up a couple of times this past week with clients, at work, and even in my personal life. I’m defining boundaries as something you create for yourself that can make some big changes in your life. They promote empowerment and when done with love, can often lead to more intimate relationships. I also give an example of a situation in which boundaries are needed, what a healthy boundary, and how to enforce it.
Topics in this episode
- Defining emotional boundaries
- Creating a boundary is a 2 step process: request and consequence
- Creating a boundary versus a manual or ultimatum
- Weak boundaries
- Negative impacts of not enforcing boundaries
- Ask yourself, what can I learn from this relationship?
Hello hello hello – what’s up friends? How are you?
I’m just back from an amazing meeting with work. I’m part of this employee group at work which helps develop leadership and is just an amazing networking opportunity to meet some awesome – strong – women.
You know – its so interesting – I used to say I wanted to just do a really good job and ﬂy under the radar. Why?? Is this you my friend?
My girl Robin – I mean the Queen – lol.. my fave Peloton instructor has really helped with this – well – and of course coaching – I think that goes without saying but maybe I should say it..lol.. but really – Robin says this all the time – don’t play small so others feel better.
Check yourself – are you doing that?
Ask yourself – why?
Here’s what I’ve come to believe – when we step up and rise together it makes everyone better.
Let’s do this ladies.
OMG – its was funny – I was actually delayed in the airport and like chair dancing as I was doing work and listening to some of Robins songs from her rides – I was like jamming and thinking – totally normal – we are in NYC – nobody even sees me ..lol..
Ok – so let’s jump into todays topic – boundaries.
This came up a couple times last week with clients and at work and actually some questions in my personal life – so I thought it was an important topic to share today.
For this episode I’m deﬁning a boundary as something you create for yourself – it really is something we use in coaching that can make some real changes in your life.
An emotional boundary is very similar to a property boundary – it delineates where one person ends and another begins.
So there is a request and a consequence
Its a 2 step process
1. You as someone to do something
2. You let them know what you will do if they do not comply.
Now – sometimes boundaries can be confused another tool I discuss – having a Manual for somebody.
Setting boundaries is not I want you to be more romantic, or I want you to take out the garbage
These are not boundary issues –
That is a manual – the way you know when you have a manual for somebody is when it entails you telling them they need to do something so you feel better.
So you can of course make a request of another – like I would love for you to be more romantic
But when you base your emotional happiness on what they do or not do is when it’s considered a manual.
That is you in emotional childhood and not taking responsibility for your feelings.
And boundaries are not ultimatums
So for sure it’s not something like – If you are not more romantic I will not partake in sex..lol..
Healthy boundaries actually promote empowerment and often lead to more intimate relationships
And boundaries really come from a loving place.
I think what happens a lot of times is we set these weak boundaries – so maybe you don’t even make the request you just get frustrated at the other person – or maybe you make the request but you don’t follow through on the consequences.
This can be maddening – so frustrating.
Here’s the thing – we know our property boundaries right?
They are usually pretty clear.
But our personal boundaries not so much.
So how do you know when to set a boundary?
You set a boundary when you are clear on what it is – just like the property boundary.
What I mean is you really want to know what the consequence is – very clearly – if the other person does a very speciﬁc thing – you must be clear on this.
You communicate the boundary when someone has violated it.
Think about it – most of us have a personal boundary not allowing others to hit us.
But we don’t walk around telling just telling random people – by the way – if you hit me I’m going to call the police.
But – if someone hits us we clearly communicate the boundary of what will happen if that ever occurs again.
So you make the request.
They get to decide what they do
You follow through
So lets say you have a friend that is always late.
You are get soo frustrated because you don’t think they are respecting your time
This recently came up with one of my clients and I showed her how she wasn’t respecting her own time
Because she let the friend continue to do it
So in this case a boundary would look something like –
Hey – I love you and totally want to hang out – but if you are 15 minutes late I’m going to have to take oﬀ because I have other things to do
And then you need to take oﬀ if she isn’t there
Always from a place of love – its just you protecting yourself and you move on without frustration
Another example that may be a little more challenging for some is let’s say your mother in law shows up unexpectedly at your house
She just wants to see you and the grandkids – seems like a loving idea .. in her mind right?
But maybe you have like – life that happens and you don’t want her to come over unannounced
So ﬁrst step is – from a loving place – and again you really want to be clean in your mind about this and understand the reasons you don’t want her to just stop in unannounced
So you could say – I know you want to see the grandkids and we want you to as well, but we really need you to give us a heads up when you are coming over so we can tell you if its a good time.
If you don’t, we might not be here – or we might not open the door because we are in the middle of something
(who knows – maybe the sex from the above request to be romantic …lhahahha)
Just kidding – you do not have to tell the mother in law that
Now – you have a clear request and a clear consequence
Not just we don’t want you to come over unannounced – see the diﬀerence?
And then the sometimes challenging part is – being sure to follow through on the consequence
So if she shows up unannounced and you keep answering the door it sends the message you do not really have a boundary set.
Usually people fear how the mother in law will react
But here’s the thing – how are you reacting?
Usually you are so frustrated and angry underneath that you do not show up with love and kindness for the person.
Not following through fosters resentment and for sure does not help build any sort of intimate relationship,
Interesting right – we are afraid to have the conversation and follow through because we aren’t sure what will happen to the relationship or we think – oh that would be rude of me to not answer the door..
But the other option us your just lie and get angry and don’t create a super fun feeling for anyone – now that could be considered rude yeah? lol.
Setting a boundary is about us having the courage to be authentic
It really could beneﬁt both parties because a lot of times the other person doesn’t really know how you feel
It’s not a problem – you just haven’t set a boundary yet because you haven’t spoken your truth
When you can own that and take responsibility for your own feelings you can totally come from a place of love.
And they may not honor the boundary
That doesn’t mean you have to be like – what the hell ??
OI thought I told you…
No – just keep in mind you have set this to take care of yourself
The follow through on consequences can just come from love and peace
Now – here’s the easier option that I sometimes see – you just want to eliminate the person from you life
But what have you learned from that?
Here is a question that might actually lead to some personal growth –
What can I learn from this relationship?
A lot of times its easier to just shut down. – but what do you learn?
Some of the most challenging people in our lives give us the best opportunities to learn and grow
Boundaries truly can bring the relationship to a new level – when done with love – but they can also be challenging…
You need the courage to honor yourself – and from there you will ﬁnd so much more peace in your life.
OK friends – that’s what I have for you today. As always – thank you so much for tuning in – lets circle back next week – but for now – make it a great day – take care!