When we fail to set boundaries and hold people accountable, we feel used and mistreated. This is why we sometimes attack who they are, which is far more hurtful than addressing a behavior or a choice. ― Brené Brown
Should we have them? Do we need them? Will they hurt us now? Will they hurt us in the afterlife?
I wouldn’t say my mom was excellent with boundaries, but I wouldn’t say she didn’t have any either. She seemed to maintain an interesting balance – sometimes it worked, sometimes it didn’t.
What I learned from her however is that not setting any boundaries is not good. Not setting any boundaries comes down to fear, fear that the person who might be sometimes rightfully kept on the “other side of the fence”, will not accept it and will even go out of their way to hurt us in one way or another, directly or indirectly.
It is interesting to note however that those who seem to have many many boudanries set, or what I call, harsh inflexible boundaries set, are equally afraid of getting hurt or losing out.
So what works?
Like all things, it is balance.
There are boudanries that matter, and there are those that don’t.
For matters that may be harmful and involve yourself or your family, there should be a clear and consistent application of boundaries with active reflection and strength to ward off fears that may or may not be founded.
If these fears are founded, thank god you picked them up. If these fears are unfounded, thank god you did something about boundaries that will prevent future feelings of resentment, isolation and potentially negative behavior and mistrust towards others.
For matters that benefit ourselves or others … boundary-less. I would also ask myself why I would want to set boundaries in matters that bring benefits to many?
As we approach the last couple of days of this blessed month, may god make us witness more and more of them in our future, a big lesson that my mother’s life taught me is that …
Boundaries are essential.
When none are set, resentment sets in.
When too many are set, injustice towards others sets in.
Set them in matters, specific to you and your family, that may be hurtful or harmful.
Let go of all boundaries in matters that benefit yourself and others.
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