These Boundaries Will Have the Greatest Impact on Your Life
This is a guest post from Barb Nangle. Her website is here and she has a great podcast too! She is available for individual coaching. I am including her posts because I believe that if we set good boundaries, we will improve the relationships we have with others. (At the very least, we won’t resent the other person!)
Most people are clear that there are such things as boundaries of self-protection, though they may not call them that. And if they have poor boundaries, they’re probably also clear that others are “walking all over them” (thus the need for boundaries of self-protection).
What they probably don’t get is that their poor boundaries mean they’re likely violating other people’s boundaries – and creating chaos, drama and dysfunction in their own lives because of this lack of boundaries.
That was definitely true for me. In fact, the types of boundaries I’m writing about today were – by far – THE MOST IMPACTFUL BOUNDARIES I BUILT!
These are called boundaries of self-containment, which refers to things you either “contain” or stop doing all together. They lack of these creates chaos and drama, or exacerbates the already-existing drama around you. They’re about self-control.
Before I got into detail about wtf these boundaries are, I want to share some reasons these have been so impactful in my life.
The first reason is that they’re about ME controlling ME (the only person I actually have any control over). I was astonished to learn just how much of the drama and chaos of my life went away when I contained all these things.
There are so many widely varied boundaries of self-containment that they touch every single area of my life. They’re the kinds of things that absolutely no one else can affect, they’re entirely up to me and many of them only affect me and no one else. However, many of them also affect others.
So what am I talking about? What are boundaries of self-containment?
Here are some personal examples of things I was doing that I either stopped or “contained” that really only affect me.
· I don't have to give people too much information, especially personal and private information that made me unnecessarily vulnerable to others. I keep personal information only between myself and people that I already know I can trust.
· I no longer trust untrustworthy people, acting like it was somehow noble to do that. I had a subconscious belief that if I just loved them enough, they’d turn into an honest person. I now realize that trust is built over time – we can only discern if someone is trustworthy through their patterns of behavior. Patterns can only be seen with the passing of time.
· I don’t replay events or re-read messages over and over again, reliving the difficulties again and again (as if they might turn out differently). I understand now that I was activating my nervous system when I did that, and I now put a high priority on my nervous system being regulated.
Here are some examples of these boundaries that affect me and others.
· I no longer gossip. I didn’t realize the far-reaching effects of my gossip. It affected my reputation, the reputation of those I talked about, and it also created a culture of expectation in my workplace that” we don’t solve problems, we complain about them.” It reinforced victim mentality.
· I don’t spend time complaining and blaming others about things I have no control over. When others complain and blame a lot, I don’t hang around them. I’m interested in growth so focusing on complaints and blame block that, not to mention the unending drain on my energy.
· I no longer do “rescue missions” where I’m more invested in someone’s life than they are. I no longer get drained from the never-ending siphon of energy going to someone who has no interest in helping themselves. I’m now available to help people who are willing to meet me at least half way and are invested in their own development.
If your experience is anything like mine, you’ll find that when you start controlling yourself, the impact will be enormous!