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Boundaries for relationships that work!

From: Succeed, Love, Fly,

14
April
2010
Boundaries for relationships that work!

Are you:

  • Fed up with people treating you badly?
  • Tired of being put upon at work?
  • Attracting potential partners who seem not to respect you?
  • Unclear how to achieve the best for yourself?
  • Know you are worth more but can’t quite work out what that is?
  • Feeling your behaviours have a will of their own?

Have you ever embarked on a relationship with somebody who treated you in a way you knew was wrong but you allowed it to continue and accept it, in the hope it would change? Are you spending time waiting and hoping for action to demonstrate respect, kindness and love from a significant other? Or maybe you feel deep down that you deserve less than you are hoping for?

Self esteem and self respect are attractive qualities and are built by knowing the behaviours that are acceptable to us and being clear about what we truly deserve. It is important then to impart this information to those around us.

A personal boundary is a line drawn telling others what is acceptable to you., a form of protection and evidence of your self-esteem and self respect. Personal boundaries are imperative when creating good, healthy relationship.

When we take responsibility for how we allow others to treat us the entire relationship changes, whether it is family, friends, work or romance the key is the same. Taking the blame away from the other person, we look in the mirror and ask “Why am I allowing myself to be treated like this?” but so often don’t know how to start changing.

By understanding our feelings, our expectations and voicing them we are taking responsibility for them. Understanding that any feeling is a transient state and we always have the power to make the necessary change – even if the behaviour causing these feelings is relating to another person.

It is important to state our feelings out loud. “I feel angry about your not calling me last night.” There is no accusation and no blame, just stating the simple fact that you are feeling angry is voicing a boundary. You are telling the other person that their behaviour is not acceptable to you.

Of course, you are not responsible for the behaviour of another, however you are responsible for how you respond and how you allow others to treat you.

If you have been treated badly in former relationships you may be using boundaries as walls to prevent others from getting up close and personal – you are doing this to protect old wounds but instead of healing them you are isolating yourself from having a loving and intimate relationship.

Setting personal boundaries might be the key to healthy relationships and strong self esteem but many people are not aware of how to create and define their personal boundaries.

We begin by becoming aware of what healthy behaviour and acceptable dynamics look like before we can start practicing them ourselves. By learning how to be emotionally truthful with ourselves and how to communicate in a direct, honest and respectful manner.

Our closest relationships are the most difficult to boundary and therefore I recommend starting with those people who are less important to you. As you become more comfortable with demanding respectful behaviour you will find the natural next step is to bring it into you closest circle. Soon you will have designed clear boundaries that will become natural to you.

Watch how the behaviour presented to you by others changes and mirrors your boundaries. You will be amazed how quickly a boundary is implemented and the difference it will made to the way you feel about yourself and how others treat you.

The first rule of a boundary is no blame is involved. You might think about saying “you make me feel…”. Take responsibility for the way you feel with “I feel sad when you say that”.

How about: “How could you do this to me after all I have done for you?” This is the blame game again and will not help your boundaries one iota. Be clear, these are your feelings and the only part of the equation you are responsible for. Instead you might say “I am disappointed you have chosen to do that.” The response to this is not your responsibility!

Judgement is also out of the window for a good boundary. “That guy is such an idiot” Is a judgement. “I find that guys behaviour a little crazy, I will avoid him” Is a boundary.

Start building the boundary blocks for your unique demands in any relationship, if somebody treats you in a way not conducive to your values, let them know and remember you are not responsible for their response.

Setting a boundary is not making a threat – it is communicating clearly what the genuine consequences will be if the other person continues to treat us in an unacceptable manner. “If you continue not to communicate with me when you are upset but instead go silent and bang the pots around I will go out for a while until you calm down and are ready to discuss things. If you choose not to do this I will make an appointment for us to go and see a Counsellor in order to help us communicate and avoid these cold spells.”

State the behaviour, give space for the other person to change and state the consequences. Be sure not to demand, you are simply stating the effect on you their behaviour has and what you are choosing to do about it. No requirement for raised voices, tears or arguments.

The other person now knows exactly what the implications are of their behaviour and they make a choice.

Many of us are aware of ‘boundaries’ but are hopeless when it comes to applying them. IF so, maybe you would benefit from help? A good Life Coach will assist you in drawing up and implementing boundaries in a wide area of your life – from work to play to love.

Change your relationships today and feel good about who you are….. get boundaried!

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I wasn’t aware of my purpose. Feeling numb and unfulfilled, I decided to change it! I studied NLP and found the results astounding. Working as a Director for a Blue Chip I used NLP with my teams and discovered something I love to do - assisting people to make the change they want in their lives. That was 10 years ago and now, having added many change tools, I have my own business and work with clients to facilitate their success and have never been happier.

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