The Thin Line Between Exercising Safe Boundaries and Crossing Them
It's a metaphor
Hi, my name is Amanda and I'm not good at setting or keeping boundaries.
I don't know how others feel about this topic, but I know that sometimes it's really hard for me to set my boundaries and keep them. This reflects in many aspects in my life. Personal boundaries, romantic boundaries, interpersonal boundaries with the different people in my life - it all reflects back to the fact that sometimes I share too much or say too much or do the wrong thing.
We all know what it's like to make a mistake. It's even worse when you feel guilty about it, like you crossed the boundaries you had set for yourself. Sometimes I feel this when I overshare with guys on the first date. I give away too much of myself, and I barely keep enough for myself. That's how I got wrapped up in an abusive relationship the first time, so learning about boundaries is a must for me.
Why does it matter? Because people take advantage of others when they're vulnerable. I am in no way saying that all people are bad and that everyone is going to take advantage of you, but you can't just give yourself away to everyone because there are people who won't appreciate those pieces of you that they receive. There are people who won't care for those pieces, and will try to break them instead.
It's also good practice to keep at least a little bit of mystery. I swear, it's good for your mental health. I feel more powerful when I know that others don't know everything about me, and feeling powerful leads to confidence, which is one of my main goals in every day life.
One of the hardest things I'm learning to do is sitting with your own uncomfortable emotions. I overshare because I get these emotions and I want to get them out and express them, but sometimes it may be necessary to get to know these emotions in order to examine them. How did you get them? Is there any way you can avoid what led to them the next time?
If you're having trouble with boundaries, maybe make a list of ones that are important to you. Ones that you break frequently. Whatever you feel applies - just something to remind you of what you're working towards. A gentle reminder is never bad.
Don't try to conquer mountains on the first day and be disappointed when you can't summit. You can't expect yourself to be perfect at boundaries (or learning anything new actually) right away. It's just not realistic. It takes time to learn and exercise new skills, just as you would plant and nourish a seed so that it can grow.
Be confident about your boundaries. That's why it helps to write them down, so you're always confident that this is what you stand for. When asserting your boundaries, look the other person in the eye when you say what you say, and mean it. Confidence can do wonders on getting someone's point across.
If you want to better your boundaries but don't know where to start, talk to someone in your support system that can help you identify the problem areas in your life. Two heads are better than one!
In conclusion, if you're having trouble with boundaries, I can relate. How do you work on these issues? Share some wisdom with me. Maybe you can gain something from this post today - I hope so! Have a good day!