I used to think rejecting others was impractical. It didn’t seem feasible to say ‘no’ to people and it’s organically in my nature to help someone that acquires it, but when we enforce boundaries, we can’t be ‘everything’ to everyone: trying to be everything is an unhealthy example of kindness and a notable result in self-sabotage. It’s impossible to please unappeasable people – so be yourself – otherwise you double-cross yourself.
It’s easy to worry about how others would portray us if we gave them little- to-any ammunition, so instead we do things that are out of our character – despite our morals – to please others. It is through this experience that I learned I would much rather be admired for my true inheritance including: my dignity, integrity, standards, and ethics, than to be simplemindedly labelled as ‘kind’.
I’ve done it many, many times before! I’ve kept secrets from people I didn’t want to keep secrets from: I’ve lied to protect others, I’ve suppressed my gut feelings, I’ve stayed quiet in situations that have made me uncomfortable, and all for what? Hahaha…Well,
We aren’t expected to compromise our boundaries just because others have none. Learn and set your boundaries, then learn to say no to anything that crosses them, without explaining yourself.
At no point in our lives do we have to tolerate disrespect. Boundaries are there to hinder behaviours that we don’t like. This means, if somebody repeatedly erodes our boundaries, consider communication or cutting ties. But this does not mean we are permitted to over-explaining ourselves nor do we need to justify our behaviours to someone who is unwilling to accept them regardless of any explanation we may give.
Let me remind you: allowing people who emotionally exhaust us back into our lives is not being kind – doing for others what they could do for themselves is not being kind – being kind for something in return is not being kind – taking the blame is not being kind – maintaining somebody else’s wants or desires is not being kind.
It is only toxic people who choose to weaponize your boundaries as an offence. If we could clearly explain our boundaries and they are still going to be overstepped or misinterpreted, it is not worth explaining to those who will always find the flaws in our sincerity.
When somebody doesn’t like our boundaries, they may imply that we’re selfish to manipulative us into neglecting our own desires to accommodate theirs when this is merely a deflection of their own selfishness. Implying that somebody is selfish for putting themselves first is so simple-minded – in my opinion; being self-focused is often mistaken for being self-centred when this is not the case; at all!
Have you ever heard the saying ‘you can’t pour from an empty cup’? Sometimes, we can’t accommodate other people without accommodating ourselves: we need to prioritise our own health even when it’s inconvenient for others.
People who depended (or co-depended), on us just feel threatened by our growth, especially those incapable of flourishing independently, therefore not everyone will appreciate the way that we evolve without them; we leave them so far behind that they can’t cope with their own vulnerability to indecision, and uncertainty. (This is not our problem and we should not compromise our boundaries for the sake of somebody else’s comfort.)
Not everyone will accept your boundaries, and that’s Okay! Relationships that no longer fit purpose may dissipate when you set your boundaries.
We lose many relationships because we are mismatched to them. This is an indicator that we have grown or changed; that we need to realign new relationships. When we grow, we are no longer content with a life appeasing everyone else but instead, we make decisions based on our own lives. Don’t confuse progression with regression—this is a sign you are ready for the next chapter of your life.
Prioritise the people deemed to be authentic in our lives, rather than people-pleasing those who aren’t worthy of our loyalty.
We should remain unapologetically us – everything else will gravitate naturally.