Potentially shocking: not everyone is going to like you, what you believe in, AND you’re probably not going to change others mind if they are vehemently opposed to your opinions. Especially if you troll them on Twitter or unfriend them on FB. Bummer, and we’re grown ups. We can choose how we approach and treat each other.
Before you tune out and think I’m saying “Why can’t we all just get along,” let me say this. We are complex human beings and we won’t agree all the time. That’s OK. I actually like differences in human beings.
You have your own likes and dislikes. You have your own opinions and goals and dreams. You have your own body and mind and spirit. Thank the sweet heavens that you are you. I am me.
We’re both on this planet right now, and whatever we agree or disagree on, we both matter. We are meant to be here for multitudes of reasons beyond my knowing.
But how do we do this? How do we go through the day staying whole, staying open, staying compassionate when there is so much discord around us? As many of you might suspect, I’m suggesting healthy boundaries can help and, with a few easy action steps, you will make it through this week with your adrenal glands and sanity intact. Stick with me…
Boundaries do four main things:
- Create Order
Boundaries are meant to keep things out that are harmful to our physical, mental, emotional, energetic, and spiritual health. In times of divisiveness, we may set boundaries to limit our intake of media. We can choose to not engage with people who speak disrespectfully and to listen to those who speak compassionately of alternate views.
When boundaries are healthy they filter out life’s experiences, bringing in what is needed and sorting out what doesn’t work. Over a decade ago, I realized law school and me were not a match made in heaven. But even though I ditched the legal studies, my filter allowed me to keep some really useful skills (among them, one skill useful in trying times: how to see both sides).
When our boundaries are healthy they serve to draw towards us what we need. Things like healing, information, guidance, people, events, jobs, money, healthy relationships . . . The opposite is true too. When we are overtaken by fear and anxiety, that’s what we’ll pull toward us. We do ourselves and the world a lot of good by creating healthy boundaries and opening up to healing, compassion, understanding. All that stuff you wish there were more of in the world? Your boundaries pull that to you and you can offer it back.
Yup, sometimes it feels like world is a chaotic mess. We need a container, a safe space for our ideas, beliefs, and actions to blossom. A place to nurture our ideas, truths, expressions when we are vulnerable. So if you are feeling anxious or overwhelmed or uncertain right now, it’s time to check in with your boundaries. You need them more than ever.
I know a lot of people who are struggling in the collective space right now. They are worn out by negativity, tired of devisiveness. They dream of healing and wholeness. You can’t inflict boundaries on others. (Hopefully. That = assault. No good.) But you can tend to and nurture your own boundaries.
Want to do something big for yourself and the collective? Take a few of these practical steps and work on your boundaries.
Take care of the physical.
Action: Do low belly breathing for 10 minutes to get out of the fight or flight response. No joke. 10 minutes of breathing changes your physiology for 24 hours.
Take care of the emotional.
Action: Say no to activities that drain you or pummel your emotions. That may look like getting off Facebook or not talking politics at dinner. Accept difference (hint: you can accept without debating).
Take care of the relational.
Action: Avoid gossip. That can mean gossip about people in your neighborhood or around the world. You don’t have to engage.
Take care of the energetic.
Action: Practice self-awareness to start to tease out where you may be picking up some other energies. Try journaling or meditation. Take a few minutes each day, over the next week to develop greater self-awareness and jot down your observations.
Take care of the spiritual.
Action: We get into some big things here: terrorism, discrimination, messages inflicting a deep sense of shame, unworthiness, or lack of value. Start simply by acknowledging where your spiritual boundaries are worn down.
As you create better boundaries, you stand more firm in your own true essence. The world doesn’t go away, but you have more protection. And at the same time, you shine your light, you share your love, and you help improve the collective energy. Who knew boundaries could do all that?
If you’re ready to take more positive action toward better boundaries, my online, automated Boundaries course is open. You might want to check that out this week.
Sending love out to you and the world. All of it. Good, bad, and everything inbetween. It’s all part of this sweet little thing called life.