How to Have Healthy Boundaries - Must Have Strategies for High Performers
5 Minute Read. To watch the video version on Facebook click here.
Have you ever felt like you need to set healthier boundaries with people?
Your boundaries are EVERYTHING.
Without healthy boundaries, you:
❌Give away your power
❌Live in the shadow of others
❌Are reactive to other peoples needs
❌Face burnout & exhaustion
❌End up with regrets
❌Put yourself last
❌Never reach your full potential
I know how it feels to have a lack of boundaries...
I know how it feels to people-please and try to live a life completely for others and disregarding your self.
I know how it feels to be reactive and share too much,
Or to not speak up when boundaries are crossed.
I know that sometimes it feels like we are being "kind",
But as Brene Brown explains: "𝗧𝗿𝘂𝗲 𝗸𝗶𝗻𝗱𝗻𝗲𝘀𝘀 𝗵𝗮𝘀 𝗯𝗼𝘂𝗻𝗱𝗮𝗿𝗶𝗲𝘀."
If you want to learn how to have healthy boundaries, I'd love to share how you can create Four Different Types of Boundaries in this blog article.
I've covered this topic in a previous video and article before, however this is such an important topic and I know many of you struggle with this as high performers.
So, let's get started.
HEALTHY BOUNDARY #1
The Boundary of Saying "No"
"NO" is a full sentence. So many of us struggle to say no. Even if we don’t directly say the word "no" in everyday life and in professional settings, many of us cringe at the thought of declining an offer, such as taking on extra work.
This very lack of “no” is detrimental.
You burn out.
You get overwhelmed.
You become a nasty person because you are just spreading yourself too thin. If this sounds like you or sounds like someone that you know, have hope; there are ways to overcome this. There are two big parts that we first need to understand about why you're having issues with saying "no".
The first big part of having issues with saying "no", is because you're coming from a trying-to-prove-yourself space. You feel like you need to keep proving yourself. You need to keep showing your worth. You need to keep showing that you're capable, you're competent, whether that’s personally or professionally.
But the fact is, with what you are doing and you as a person right now, you are enough. If you're taking on too much, it doesn't make you any more enough as a person. It just makes you exhausted.
So at the core, one of the things I'd love you to work on is to begin to feel like you are enough and you are worthy just as who you are. Reach out to a great coach that can support you around this. Know that you are enough and you don't have to prove anything.
The second part of why saying "no" is a challenge can be that you are trying to "people-please". That you're trying to keep the peace. Keep everybody happy, be the saviour, be the helper. This pattern and need to please would have come from your childhood.
I invite you to reflect on where in your childhood you took on the role or were given the role, from your family, from your parents or from your guardians, where you had to be the fixer, the saviour, the good girl, the good boy. I invite you to go down a healing journey with realizing there are great parts of you that come from that mask of giving and not so resourceful parts, such as over pleasing others.
If you spread yourself too thin and you say yes to everything, it's actually not truly kindness. As Brené Brown explains, "True kindness has boundaries."
So, what I invite you to do is to work on feeling enough as you are and healing your "people-pleasing" mask that you wear. To realize that all emotions are valid and if people are feeling different emotions, besides joy, that's okay as well.
You are enough. You don’t have to please everyone.
HEALTHY BOUNDARY #2
Have you ever word-vomited over other people? Do you share too much or interrupt others?
Linguistic boundaries are the boundaries of words, whether that is sharing personal stories about yourself or others, vulnerable information, asking questions or for advice, or just over talking in general.
Perhaps you find that you start to talk, talk, and talk in the workplace, for example, when people are focusing. Therefore, as a result, people are doing that to you. Do you feel you are being distracted you from your work, distracted from me-time, and distracted overall? Perhaps you haven’t created linguistic boundaries between yourself and others.
It’s important to remember that being respectful of other people’s information, space or their time is paramount to building trust.
It’s okay to have silence, and it is okay to first see if someone seems open to the conversation before you start.
In order to create linguistic boundaries, the first communication tool to play with is asking permission before sharing or asking something of another people who may be preoccupied with something else. Whether we're asking a question or sharing something, ask if that person is available for you to do so. Check in that the person is ready, willing, and able to hear you, to give advice or to really be in a conversation with you at that moment, because they could be focusing on other things.
Then, ask other people to do the same for you. For example, my partner and I, when we both started our own businesses platforms of helping others from home, we realised that sometimes we just walked into each other's space and started to talk talk, and talk. As a result, this would distract the other person from what they were doing and we wouldn’t fully be present with each other in that moment.
So, we started as a rule that we would check in before we walk into each other’s space and start to share. For example, we would knock on the door and check in that they have a moment before we go inside and share. The other person could then easily ask, "can I have 5 or 10 minutes to finish this off first, honey?" This way we create more respect for each other’s space, more present conversations, and create a more open dialogue.
This process of asking permission and checking will improve your overall communication skills and social awareness. So, play with increasing your linguistic boundaries.
HEALTHY BOUNDARY #3
Physical Space Boundaries
Physical space boundaries are crucial for you to value and respect yourself and others more. If you don't have anywhere which is your own, there is no space or time that's just for you, I invite you to see where you can start to change that.
We all need our own space, no matter how extroverted or how introverted our qualities might be, we all need our own space to just be, to focus on us, to be alone. Otherwise, we are people-pleasers who are living in the eyes of others, we become reactive or reliant, and we start living through other people. This can lead to us not even knowing who we are.
I invite you, within the workplace or in your home, to see where you can create your own space or time for yourself physically, mentally, and emotionally, an actual space where it's just for you. If you have a shared space and that’s unavoidable, asking for that space for a certain amount of time to be just yours. For example, asking to use the living space for 30 minutes of mindfulness.
We all need physical space, and we all need to respect each other's physical space as well. This can mean, once again, asking permission. Knock on each other’s doors. Respect other people's space. This can depend on the culture that you've grown up with for this to be normal or not, but whatever your cultural background and experience, I invite you to look at where you can create your own space for you.
Golden Bonus BOUNDARY
Are you sharing your vulnerable story or opening up to people who aren't emotionally ready to hold space for you?
Are you asking emotional questions to people who are just not ready for those types of conversations? It’s important we understand that everybody is on their own emotional journey, and not everybody is emotionally safe.
If you realise that some of your family members, friends, or colleagues aren't emotionally safe, you can either slowly start a vulnerable conversation to open them up to that awareness or find other people who you can be emotionally safe with.
Some people are not going to give us what we need in terms of the emotional and vulnerable sharing space. This can be tough to accept when it’s someone close to us, however we do need to accept that some people don't want to change and that's okay, that’s their journey. Therefore, it is even more important for us to surround ourselves with people who can hold emotional space.
So, to take care of your emotional boundary is to ask permission once again before you share something emotional. Make sure that they're willing, able and are ready to hold space for you. Furthermore, ask for what you need from them before you share. For example, tell them politely that you don't want their advice and you just want them to listen. Ask them if they have 15 minutes just to sit with you right now and hear your shares.
If you don't articulate your needs, they're not going to know how to be there for you emotionally. So, be aware of your own emotional boundaries, ask for what you need, and respect other people's emotional boundaries.
Woohoo! I trust that this blog article on healthy boundaries has added value to you. I invite you to like and comment below if you resonate or have any questions, and share this article with anyone you feel is going to benefit from this.
As always, if there are any topics or any other challenges I can support you with, simply message me at www.jodydontje.com/connect. I'd be happy to support you.
I'm here to serve.
Remember, every day you have a choice:
You can choose to be ordinary, or as Denise Burchard explains “YOU CAN CHOOSE TO BE EXTRAORDINARY”.
So, go out there and choose to be EXTRAORDINARY.
Be Brave. Be Vulnerable. Be Kind.
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