“In order to thrive…”
Sometimes I struggle before admitting to someone what they’re doing (or not doing) doesn’t work for me. I envy folks who have rock solid boundaries. Establishing boundaries is like building a new muscle, it requires strength training.
Have you ever recalled the scariest movie you’ve ever seen in your entire life while walking alone to your car at night and basically scare yourself half to death? What I bump up against, often with family members, is the fear of how what I say may land for them. I recall, in an instant, anything and everything they’ve recently shared about their lives. Then, cowardly conclude that now is not the time which makes no sense! Obviously, if something is rubbing me the wrong way, enough to want to share it, why place my need second? When voices rise and tones turn insincere, I feel bullied and like a turtle, retreat slowly back into my hard safe shell.
How to maintain healthy reciprocal relationships in the face of something not working:
- Breathe… it simply takes honest conversations. Remember: we are responsible for teaching people how to treat us. How could anyone ever know if we don’t teach them? Secretly hoping they’ll figure it out isn’t working, right? Right?
- Withholding deprives relationships of its oxygen. Acknowledge you feel awkward, even if it’s just to yourself.
- Say: “This doesn’t work. Where do we go from here?”
Healthy relationships, like plants, need nutrients and nurturing in order to grow. Occasionally, we all need to pull off the dead leaves and get our hands deep into the soil again in order to thrive. We love your comments! Let us know how you’re honoring or not honoring your boundaries.
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