How to Set Healthy Boundaries

Not being able to set boundaries effectively and consistently can lead to a domino effect of negative emotions. When we don’t set boundaries with people it can often lead to feelings of stress, anger, and resentment.

These feelings occur because we’ve allowed someone else to interrupt our inner peace and we feel stuck or chained to whatever we have agreed to or allowed. Someone has crossed a line and we feel like our power has been taken from us when in actuality we have chosen to give it away by not setting healthy boundaries.

I know exactly how it feels to neglect to set a boundary and subsequently give away my time, energy, money, and inner peace.  As a result, feeling resentful and frustrated which can then lead to feeling trapped, which can even lead to feeling depressed.

This can become a vicious cycle if we don’t learn how to set healthy boundaries with people and keep the energy vampires and life suckers away and at a safe distance.

Healthy boundaries are like a protective shield that everyone needs to protect themselves and protect their peace of mind. They are absolutely essential to maintain our mental health so we can thrive in life and our goals with little distractions and roadblocks.

Essentially, not being able to set boundaries is like a warrior going into battle without a shield or armor. It could lead to a lot of internal wounds as a result.

Let’s talk about the concepts of setting healthy boundaries with anyone and everyone, so you can avoid being taken advantage of as well as be able to breath more easy and have confidence in any social setting.

KNOW YOUR LIMITS

It is crucial to know and to have an understanding of what you find unacceptable. Everyone has different limitations to what they are and are not willing to do and accept from people. For example some people do not mind doing favors for a friend, however, they draw the line at lending money. Knowing what your limitations are and what you find unacceptable will make it easy to set boundaries as opposed to agreeing to do something in the moment it’s being asked of you, then end up feeling frustrated down the line.

KNOW YOUR VALUES

Personal values are different for everyone. It is important to know what your values are and what your priorities are to be able to set boundaries. Someone who values family above anything else, won’t be agreeing to things that don’t allow them any family time. This was the case during my time wrestling and being on the road. I had missed so many holidays and family events it just got to the point when enough was enough and I had to stop doing shows so often. I wanted to be home, and I valued family time and being at home more than I valued wrestling. That may not be the case for someone else. This is unique to you and I suggest writing down the things you value in the order of their importance to you to get a good understanding of your own personal values.

LISTEN TO YOUR EMOTIONS

You really have to master tuning into your emotions. Often our emotions are the alarms going off telling ourselves something is up. Pay attention to how something makes you feel. If you feel negative emotions like resentment, it most likely is because you neglected to set a boundary. Now you are resentful to a person or entity because you feel like they are taking some of your freedom and your peace. Two essential things our souls NEED. However, no one took it from you. You gave it away by not setting a boundary and now you are angry at that friend who keeps asking for rides, or that boss who keeps aking you to stay late after hours. “People do to you what you allow them to do”. A statement I very much believe in. So listening to how you feel and taking control is imperative if you struggle with setting boundaries. If you struggle with tuning into your emotions, there are a number of things you can do to work on that. But it will be work. Work that is most definitely worth it.

RESPECT YOURSELF

This is the most important take away for me. Knowing that YOU have value is the key to setting boundaries. Your time has value, your energy has value, and your emotional state is EXTREMELY VALUABLE. Knowing your worth and value will make it easy to not give too much of yourself away.

RESPECT OTHERS

I encourage you to understand this is not about being self-serving and selfish. We should all have the intention to help those in need and make the world a better place. This is about protecting yourself from people who take advantage of others and “energy vampires”. So go out there and serve your community. Help those in need. Do it with love but protect yourself in the process.

BE ASSERTIVE

Being assertive is about calmly and clearly communicating your needs and expressing yourself. Being assertive is a skill you build. Practice being calm cool and collected while communicating and expressing yourself and your desires.

CONSIDER THE LONG TERM

Consider the current relationships in your life right now. If you have a relationship in your life where you feel like you are doing all the giving and that energy is not being reciprocated, you have to analyze that situation and decide if this is something healthy for you in the long term.

START NOW

No matter how many times you neglected to set baoundaries you can start incorporating these principles in your life TODAY. Know your worth. LOVE YOURSELF. Speak kindly to yourself and be courageous! You are beautiful and a wonderful soul.

 

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Own Your Freedom

Own your freedom. You have the freedom in this world and in this country to be whatever and whomever you want to be. Despite the challenges you face. Some people just have to work and fight a lot harder than others. Don’t let that discourage you, and don’t dwell on negativity. If you constantly ruminate on negativity, you only bring more negativity into your life. If you have to be twice as good as the next person for an opportunity, then be three times as good. Instead of constantly complaining about how unfair something is, elevate yourself to levels you never thought imaginable before. It will only attest to how great and amazing you are in the end. It all comes down to a mind-shift. No doubt it’s easier said than done, but it CAN be done. You are free, but only YOU can free your own mind.

Here are some ways to shift your mindset:

1. STOP NEGATIVE SELF TALK- Sometimes we speak badly about ourselves due to our mistakes or the perception we have of ourselves. Society will sometimes have us believe things about ourselves that are not true. Who you are, what you look like, where you come from, who your family is, or how much money you make does not dictate your self-worth. You are amazing just the way you are and you have to tell yourself that every day. If you find yourself speaking badly or criticizing yourself,  STOP and replace those thoughts with positive thoughts.

2. DO NOT DWELL ON NEGATIVITY- Unfortunately, there will always be negative things going on in the world. However, there does not have to be negativity in YOUR world. Do not spend your precious time dwelling on the shortcomings of other people in this world. There are good people and there are bad people in this world. Dwelling on the bad will keep you from finding the good in life. There is a difference between standing against injustice and letting negativity consume you. Stand up for yourself, but don’t absorb the negativity in this world. Let it bounce off you and keep moving forward.

3. BELIEVE IN YOURSELF- You can do anything you set your mind to. A cliche I know, however, it is TRUE. YOU CAN DO IT. You just have to believe it for yourself.