One of the biggest learnings of 2023 for me, is the importance of setting boundaries and maintaining them.
I read a lot about boundaries and how it is important to establish them in your life, but have never been able to do it. Through my therapy I have been slowly building them and trying to maintain them.
What are boundaries?
Boundaries are your space that you want to be respected, it could be physical boundaries or emotional boundaries or material boundaries.
Establishing boundaries can happen within the family, workplace and friendship.
Establishing and maintaining boundaries is an act of self-care. You need that space in all aspects for yourself.
My journey so far
As a parent, I face a lot of circumstances where I want to set my boundaries in re actions from family members about child care and their involvement in my parenting journey.
In this year, I have faced experiences where boundary setting had to be attempted where I have been hurt by my loved one’s actions. In this case, setting boundaries is giving you the space to heal and hold your emotions.
Boundaries can also be not responding to calls or texts when you don’t have the mental space and need to take care of yourself.
Establishing boundaries requires clear and confident communication, and it is important that we create that space for that conversation.
My biggest challenge in boundary setting and saying no is fear of reaction from the other person. The thing I have realised is the other person’s reaction is not within your control. It is how you process and cope with it is that is important. You should not be responsible for other’s emotions while setting your boundaries.
One needs to remember that you can’t please everyone and you are bound to disappoint some.....
Boundary setting also throws light on the true meaning and value of the relationship. This reminds me of a quote by the psychologist, Minna B “if people do respond in the way that you feared. Ask yourself, did I fear this response because I knew it would force me to examine parts of the relationship that I have been trying to avoid all along. Sometimes responses are gifts to us, they tell us to pay attention”.
As I wrap up this year, here is to establishing and holding my boundaries and fostering healthy relationships! Wishing you all a very happy new year!