10 things I’m learning about boundaries right now.

1. The anticipation of setting them is way way way worse than the glory of living inside them.

2. Leave dynamics out of it. Make it about your decision. Not interpersonal energies or character analysis. “Thanks so much for _____. I’m no longer available for _____. I’m happy to _____ as we move forward. I really appreciate you understanding.”

3. I’m not so sure if this process gets easier, but it does feel like after going through it 15,000 times in 3 weeks, my yes/no muscles are getting more defined and sculpted, and I’m finding myself living more and more inside a life that turns me on. So… worth the ache? Probably.

4. The more you have to set boundaries from a place of already-too-close in, the more discerning you get about who and what you let close in. In other words, the more you’ve had to push people outta your space, the more wisdom you have about who you open your door for and when.

5. Fear, insecurity, neurosis, or embodied anxiety about setting a boundary with a person… is usually a sign that it’s a good idea.

6. It doesn’t make you an asshole or mean to have boundaries. But it certainly can feel that way. Because you care about people’s feelings. And sometimes, you want to take responsibility for them.

7. But caring about others and taking responsibility for their feelings, reactions or responses are two VERY DIFFERENT THINGS.

8. In fact, often, the most caring things you can do are 1) Get to know yourself and your capacity–your yeses and your no’s–really well… so you can embody them from the get-go, instead of having to break ’em to ’em far later in the game, when the mess has already been made. 2) Have compassion & forgiveness for yourself for NOT knowing your yeses and your no’s really well… for having to learn through experience, on other people #WAAAAA. 3) Let people really feel their shit, all the way. (You are included in “people”.)

9. Trust their capacity to cope without you… to not need you… to access their own inner-well of resource and resilience. Trust your OWN capacity to not be needed in a way that actually drains, to have purpose beyond over-giving, to access your own inner-well of healthy connection and love.

10. ‘Cause ultimately, healthy relationships happen between two sovereign beings… not human-islands with motes and stone walls of protection… not tornados of co-dependence… but people who’ve got a healthy sense of this-is-me (blue), this-is-you (red), and this-is-our-happy-overlap (purple). And three colors are more beautiful than two, or one.

BONUS! Salt bath & sage the fuck outta yourself before, during and after difficult boundary convos. Imagine yourself coming back into a state of sovereignty. Imagine them doing the same. Infuse your cells with the light of wholeness, clean and clear of any lingering attachments.

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