When to say yes - when to say NO
Having clear boundaries is essential to a healthy, balanced lifestyle. A boundary is a personal property line that marks those things for which we are responsible. Boundaries define who we are and who we are not. Physical boundaries help us determine who may touch us and under what circumstances. Mental boundaries give us the freedom to have our own thoughts and opinions. Emotional boundaries help us to deal with our own emotions and disengage from the harmful, manipulative emotions of others.
In the physical world a fence or sign posted usually delineates a boundary. In the relationship world, fences are invisible. Nevertheless, you create good protective fences by your words, usually the word "no" Someone with poor boundaries feels that if they say "NO" to someone, they will endanger their relationship with that person. So, they passively comply, but inwardly resent. Victims of physical or sexual abuse often have a poor sense of boundaries.
By physically removing yourself from a harmful or toxic situation, you will be able to maintain clear, healthy boundaries. Separate yourself from those who continually hurt you and create a safe place for yourself. By taking a time out from a person can be a way of regaining ownership over some out-of-control aspect of your life where boundaries need to be set. You can emotionally distance yourself and establish a temporary boundary to give your heart the space it needs to be safe. It is a good idea to get some kind of support group to help you set and keep boundaries. Boundaries are not built in a vacuum, creating boundaries involves a support network. And just like any no tresspassing sign, you need to back up your boundaries with consequences.
What is within my boundaries?
Our feelings: They should neither be ignored nor allowed to take you over. Be aware of them and own them. Feelings come from the heart and can tell you the state of your relationship. Your feelings are your responsibility.
Our attitudes and beliefs: Attitudes are the stance you take toward others: God, life, work, and relationships. Beliefs are anything that we accept as true. Instead of blaming others, we need to own our attitudes and convictions. They fall within our property line.
Our behaviors: Behaviors have consequences. To rescue people from the natural consequences of their behavior is to render them powerless. Allow people/children to reap the natural consequences of their behavior.
Our choices: A common boundary problem is to disown our choices and trying to lay the responsibility for them on someone else. What is wrong with the phrase, "I had to" or "He made me do it". We are in control of our choices. Setting boundaries inevitably involves taking responsibility for our choices.
Our values: What we value is what we love and assign importance to. Don't get caught up in valuing the approval of men rather then approval of God. When we take responsibility for our out-of-control behavior caused by loving the wrong things, we can turn to God to get help and direction.
Our limits: Setting limits on ourselves is the essence of boundary making. It takes ownership, responsibility and self-control.
Our talents: We are much happier when we are exercising our gifts and are being productive.
Our thoughts, our desires and our love
Four types of people with boundary issues
Saying "yes" to the bad - Whenever they need to protect themselves by saying "no" they are stifled by fear. Fear of ---Hurting other's feelings ---Abandonment and separateness ---Someone's anger ---Punishment ---Being shamed ---Being seen as bad or selfish ---Another's overly strict, critical conscience (guilt)
Nonresponsives: Not hearing the needs of others - Two types: Ones with a critical spirit toward other's needs. They hate being incomplete in themselves. As a result, they ignore the needs others. Ones who are so absorbed in their own desires and needs, they exclude others.
Not respecting the boundaries of others - They are perceived as bullies, manipulative and aggressive. They cannot hear the word "no". Two types: Aggressive controllers: They run over other people's fences. They may not even be aware of other's boundaries. Manipulative controllers: They talk others out of their boundaries. They indirectly manipulate circumstances to get their way. They have little ability to curb their impulses or desires.
Saying "no" to the good -
---The inability to ask for help. ---To recognize one's own needs. ---To let others in. --They withdraw when they are in need. ---They do not ask for the support of others. ---Their boundaries are solid walls, not permeable. ---They cannot let the good in or let the bad out. ---No one touches them.