Did you know that everything we are is energy? Truly! Today we are going to continue in our Learning to Love Me series and really get behind the energy of the relationship boundaries we have in our life. Then we will learn how to evaluate them, release the ones that are not serving us and finally we’ll work on creating healthy boundaries that fill us with joy and energy!
When I talk about boundaries with clients and in workshops, I first walk women through moments of awakening. The approach you have about healthy relationships and boundaries determines what kind of relationships you will experience in your life. Most importantly, your approach to life determines the relationship you have with yourself.
*This post is intensive and includes links to related articles that help guide you through this one. There are also exercises for you to work through. Grab a paper and pen.
Everyone is responsible for themselves, how they think, decide, feel, act and approach life.
We are not responsible for others!
Before you can clearly define the boundaries, you want to have in your life, first you must release this crazy idea that you are responsible for other adults.
Let it go. Let them go. Let others be. Let people be free to live as they believe is best for them.
Stop feeling forced to be in relationships with people.
Let go of the notion that we can only love people up close and 24/7.
Let go of any guilt you are hanging onto as for why you have not yet removed toxic people from your life.
Owning Your Life
What this life ownership means on the flipside of letting go of all that nonsense that has been running your life, is rising up and recognizing that if you want peace, joy, happiness and health in your life – you MUST create strong, healthy boundaries.
You are here and now to get very DECISIVE about your what self-worth is going to be!
Either you are worthy of joy, peace, happiness and health or your self-worth is too low. Low self-worth creates crappy boundaries and leaves you feeling stuck with negative emotions and soul sucking relationships.
The truth is:
You ARE worthy of real love, joy, respect, care, appreciation, health & happiness!
If you want to own your life, you have to believe that truth that you ARE worthy of better.
Before you can create good boundaries and relationships with others, you need to first begin building a positive, happy, healthy relationship with yourself first.
This is why so many women are burnt out, stressed to the max, emotional wrecks, unhealthy and have nothing in the tank to give to those they love. If this is you, this means you lack real self-love and self-care.
Our first step in creating healthy boundaries is to really evaluate ourselves, our levels of self-worth, self-esteem, courage, confidence and the like. We need to get clear on our values and beliefs. I always recommend journaling this stuff out, so you have it refer back to it on days that are rough.
Exercise: Write down your current beliefs about your self-worth and value in this world. Just get it all out on paper so you can come back and really see how you are approaching life.
If you struggle with self-esteem and confidence, a great way to boost your mentality is to begin doing daily affirmations along with quiet reflective time. You can go here to learn more about creating affirmations.
Letting Go of What Holds You Back
Remember how we talked about letting go of that which is NOT good for us. Well, we have to begin with letting go of the negative beliefs you’ve been holding onto about yourself and your worth. This is where you go look at those values and beliefs you wrote down and cross out every single line that carried negative undertones.
If you need a little assistance with Letting Things Go, read that article, it is a good place to start. Also, I recommend reading The Things We Value, The Things We Have Control Over and Finding Courage.
It’s time to let go of all guilt, all sadness and loss, all fear (of being independent), all co-dependency and the like.
You are WORTHY of wonderful, loving and amazing relationships.
You ARE worthy of loving yourself wholly!
Our Ability to Love
So, we’ve taken a look at our beliefs and values, looked at how we view ourselves and realize we are going to be letting go of things and relationships that are not good for us.
I want to share with you another truth.
We can only love others to the degree in which we have learned to love ourselves.
Sometimes I get resistance to that truth, from women who do nothing but give and give and give and give.
There is nothing healthy about giving and giving and giving while never refueling your energy and caring for your own health and joy.
Women really, really struggle with this idea of putting ourselves first. I’ve been there myself at times. We’ve all done it. But it doesn’t have to be that way.
It’s time to put yourself first, at the top of your priority list for love & care!
The Energy We Radiate
Think about the kind of love and care we can extend to others when it can come from a place of real joy, peace, tenderness, purity (energy free of resistance and force), love and warm energy.
This is an affirmation I use that gently reminds me to make sure what I am doing for others is coming from a place of genuine good and love.
I radiate joy and love and bask others in my light.
Now if we compare that to how most women today actually are and feel: tired, exhausted, stressed, overwhelmed, confused, upset/over emotional, anxious, fearful, resentful, burnt out etc.
Can you recognize the difference in energy given out by these two very different women?
I want you to focus on the energy you are radiating out.
This is why putting loving and caring for our well-being first, before others, makes a BIG difference in our relationships and the roles we have.
I’m going to take you back to our life ownership concept, you ARE responsible for energy you send out in your life. So, when you are feeling all those negative feelings spiritually, mentally, emotionally and physically, it is because you’ve been indecisive about your life. You’ve been giving away your power to other people. You’ve been putting everyone else above you and the result is… you are not able to truly give your greatest love when you’ve been on the back burner.
This can be a kick in the pants when we finally realize that WE are responsible for the fact that some of our relationships are breaking us because we’ve never valued ourselves worthy enough of greater love and respect.
I want you to take a minute and get a sense of your true beauty and worth by reading Fueling the Fire Within.
Creating New Boundaries
Okay, now we are going to get to work on creating some new, healthy, fabulous boundaries that will cherish our worth, talents and oh so importantly, our energy!
Go back to that list you made of your values and beliefs. Recall you crossed out all the negative, old beliefs.
Grab a new piece of paper and copy down the positive values and beliefs you originally wrote down. We are going to build from those.
I want you to think about what constitutes a good, healthy relationships in which both people feel loved, cherished, respected and valued.
Exercise: Write those ideas and descriptions down.
These are your new boundary values.
*Do Not Skip This Exercise! It is imperative to creating and maintaining healthy boundaries from here on out.
Keep That Bar Set High
Now that you have a good list of what makes for healthy relationships you have one objective – Maintain this New Standard!
This means you will only create new real relationships with people who share similar boundary values that you have.
No More Settling!
No More Lowering Your Standards!
You ARE worthy of GOOD relationships.
If you meet someone personally or professionally and it is obvious that their ideas of what makes a good relationship (healthy boundaries) is far less than your standards, politely move on.
You are responsible for who you let in and keep in your energy space!
You are the gatekeeper in your life.
If you sense a energy vampire or soul leech lurking outside your gates or knocking at your door, defend your gate with your life!
Do not ever think it is going to be good for you to let these kinds of people into your life.
I promise you, that even professionally speaking, there will always be people out there who are mature, responsible, good, truly respectful waiting to connect with you and create healthy, wonderful relationships.
If you can’t see these ‘better’ relationship worthy people in your life, it is because you are too busy hanging onto the people in your life who are draining you.
Rise up, believe in your worth and let go of those who are only going to take and never give back.
Love from a Distance
Now I want to cover a touchy topic: What do we do when a close loved one is outright toxic?
You have to make a decision.
The quicker you make the decision, the sooner you will feel lighter, freer and alive again. The longer you avoid and delay the decision, the longer you stay stuck in the quicksand.
Okay. The truth is you can love people from a distance. This includes our parents, our current significant others who really should be exes, our grown children, our childhood best friends, our neighbors.
Again, you are 100% responsible for your life and for what and who you allow into it.
People do not have to like or agree with your decision. This decision is not for them.
It is for your overall well-being and inner peace.
You have the right to inner peace.
Toxic people often do not realize their low approach to life. They are often energy, soul suckers and they may pull all sorts of blame, guilty games on you to keep you co-dependent (or to maintain their co-dependency on you).
Again, everyone is responsible for themselves. Toxic people are responsible for themselves. You are NOT responsible for them or for their inability to be better, to do better and how they handle things.
Let go of any guilt, fear or worry you may have been harboring about the toxic people in your life.
This is a deep topic and if it is something you really struggle with I encourage you to seek out professional counseling to help you work through this issue. [I am a writer, educator and philosopher, not a professional psychiatrist.]
I wrote How to Clean Up Your Energy Space as a baby step in the right direction.
Healing Your Relationships
When we awaken to higher, healthier approaches to life, we find ourselves in a whole new light.
Hopefully as you’ve gone through this exercise, you will be able to see the difference in how we can experience life and the vast levels of joy and vitality that having good self-worth, self-love and healthy boundaries can create for you.
When you are out and about, going through your days, on social media and interacting with people, think of it like this:
What kind of energy am I tuning into?
I encourage you to journal about the main relationships you currently have in your life. Just use the following exercise to gain awareness and clarity about the states of your relationships and the boundaries you have with them.
Exercise: Write down your answers in your journal.
1.List your 5 most important personal relationships.
(Example: Laurie – My Mother, David – My Husband, Julie – Best Friend)
2.Next list your 5 most important professional relationships.
3.Now next to each person, write a number 1-10 on how healthy that relationship really is for you.
(1 being Why Is This Person in Your Life #toxic and 10 being Absolutely Amazing)
4.For every person, you wrote a 7+ by, write down 3 things that you’ve placed in your boundaries with this person that contribute to it being a great relationship for you to be in.
5.For every person, you wrote a 4-6 by, write down 1-2 things that are good and 1-2 things you recognize as needing improvement. These are people who are okay for you, and with reinforcing your greater self-worth and new boundary rules, you can likely really improve this relationship if the other person is also willing to work at it.
6.For every person, you wrote a 3 or less by, write down why you are still in a relationship with this person. Then write down the negatives in that relationship. Compare this list with your new list of healthy boundary rules.
7.For those people who are listed under your “Not Great for Me” category, walk yourself through the idea of letting them go entirely or safely loving them from a distance. Then write down your decision about whether or not you will continue your relationship with them, to what degree and the steps you will take to protect your new healthy boundaries.
More on Self-Love
Oh, my goodness. I really poured a lot out to you today. Way at the beginning I mentioned this is part of our Learning to Love Me series, guiding women in greater self-love and self-care.
If you want to join in and learn more and give your spirit a boost, sign up below!
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