Boundaries - the best type of self-care

boundaries self-care self-love women's health yoga to transform values commit Mar 13, 2022

Brene Brown talks about boundaries of steel.

Hearing Brene Brown say ‘the most compassionate people have boundaries of steel’ was a life-changing moment. Because until then being compassionate, meant you pandered almost to everybody else's needs. Resulting in being completely worn out and pummelled by everybody else's rubbish that they were throwing around and you ended up with it.  

Due to the spiritual practice that we participate in. The spiritual practice teaches love above all else, it teaches forgiveness, it teaches seeing the best in people. But the missing piece was the boundary piece. Before the boundaries of steel comment, we would be forgiving people, loving them above all else, looking for the best in them and giving people second chances, third chances, fourth chances. We should have just done the Maya Angelou quote ‘when the person shows you who they are the first time believe them’.

As women we are raised to be very nurturing, we are raised to be very giving, we are raised to be very kind and compassionate to other people and put other people ahead of ourselves. but you've got to fill your own cup first and look after yourself. The most compassionate thing to do for people, is to let them know that is not okay, you are pushing up against my boundary and I don't accept that in my life. Living an intentional life means putting those boundaries in.

When it came to finding my lovely husband. I had a few relationships before that and getting my own needs met felt like something that I was not supposed to be focused on. Because if you're in a relationship you know love above all else, so you are going to love that person. But that can turn into accepting things that aren't very good for you, in the attempt of love.  I made a list of what I want in my next relationship. By making that list I created some boundaries for the type of person I wanted to spend my life with. It was an act of self-care.

I might not have always had relationships that have lasted forever but they've taught me a lot. If you flip the whole concept of failure, as an example Thomas Edison had 998 attempts before he got the first light bulb right. Every attempt he was learning something new about wherever he needed to get to. It is the same in our human relationships. In every relationship, not necessarily romantic, you are learning what is okay and not okay and the contrast that you are willing to tolerate. This helps to establish those boundaries. Then you get to the point where you get to the 999th relationship and boom you found the light.

It is just a process of learning and revisiting those boundaries. Because life will push against your boundaries, and you must be willing to revisit them. There might be some things where you have a boundary around a certain thing, you must be willing to review if it is still a healthy or reasonable boundary. Someone might be inviting you to explore your boundary, so you can move beyond the boundaries of who you think you are.

Your thoughts and your approach to life creates solid boundaries, some of which may not actually be useful to you anymore. There are the boundaries which serve and then there are the boundaries which no longer serve and there is having the wisdom to know the difference. That can be the hard part.

It is a daily practice. Therefore, we do yoga every day. It brings us back onto the mat to move our bodies with our breath. To get back to closer to who we are so all those boundaries that aren't needed anymore can dissipate and disappear and we can go forward into our day as this bright bubbly person who loves wildly and expects miracles but is not going to have people in our lives that aren't serving us. You learn what's acceptable for you. That comes down to knowing yourself, knowing what you value and knowing what's important to you.

Boundaries bring freedom from drama and other people's drama. You might have friends that you don't see so much anymore as a result.

Women in business who led teams of people have a responsibility to hold the boundaries of acceptable and unacceptable behaviour in the team. You must have boring conversations with people on the daily. Because your team boundaries will be new for them, and it may be the first time that anyone's ever actually said in the workplace this is what happens and we're not having any of this. There'll be some people who don't like it when you put boundaries in place, if you haven't had boundaries in place with them before they'll try to get you to go back to how things were before. How people will treat you is the way that you let them treat you. This is a fact.

If you are running a team of people, there's that responsibility to keep everyone on the team safe and aligned with the vision. A lot of managers just don't do very well. It is that consistent remembering you are the guardian of the boundaries. You are responsible for how people turn up. You are responsible for how they behave.  You are responsible for how they perform. That is the key task of a manager.

If you take a manager's job and you put that onto yourself in your own life, you hold the same responsibility. If you are waiting for something to change, like being a little bit older or your job being better or finding a perfect partner. Putting off implementing boundaries is not really helping you in your life while you wait because there is this only this moment.

You also need to pub boundaries in with yourself, like if you look at our first value commit, then be disciplined. If you want to change your life, then are you willing to put the boundary in place? Are you willing to do to make the discipline of keeping to that boundary? If you really want it, you will easily put that boundary in place and you will be the guardian of that boundary.


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