"You need to set boundaries." This advice is often given to people who are looking to better their relationships with others, but oftentimes it can feel unhelpful and vague. How do you set boundaries with someone if you're not good at it or are afraid of conflict?
Fortunately, learning how to set boundaries is much simpler than it first seems!
What Exactly Is a Boundary?
A boundary, simply, is a rule that you set on how someone can or cannot interact with you. To set a boundary, you say to someone, "you cannot do this to me and have me continue to interact with you." Pretty simple overall.
The part where people tend to get tripped up when setting boundaries is that you have to be willing to adhere to the boundary you set. It means that you have to be willing to walk away if someone oversteps your boundaries.
If you have a fear of this, then setting boundaries can initially feeling somewhat terrifying. But fortunately, like all fears, this can be released.
The Fear of Setting a Boundary Is a Limiting Belief
The reason most people are afraid of setting boundaries is because they expect the outcome to have negative consequences. They are afraid that the person they are setting the boundary with will get angry and start fighting or get violent with them. Or, in terms of a relationship, they are afraid that the other person will leave them.
However, the important thing to recognize is that setting boundaries is not a bad thing. It can actually be a really good thing. People cannot read you mind and most of them appreciate when you tell them how you feel. Your partner doesn't know what bothers you unless you tell them. It can be a positive experience.
Setting boundaries also does not have to be dramatic - it can be a simple, "please don't do that to me". When setting a boundary, keep it focused on yourself. Telling someone that they can't ever do xyz to anyone else is coming from a place of control, which is trying to force someone else to take action so that you can feel better and is giving away your vibrational power.
But to say "don't do this to me if you want to continue to interact with me" is okay because it is respecting your desire to not be interacted with in a particular way while also giving the other person a chance to either agree to your boundary or to go their own way.
How to Work Through Your Fear of Setting a Boundary
Recognizing that boundary-setting can be a positive and good experience for everyone involved is the first step in working through your fears. It helps to ease the fear into hopefulness and start to raise your vibration.
The next thing thing to do is to decide on what particular boundary you want to set with an emphasis on how you feel with that boundary in place. It can be really hard to set a boundary when you are not comfortable with setting boundaries and your vibrational thought-pattern is "I want you to stop doing that, why do you keep doing that". When you focus on what you don't want people to do, you will keep manifesting people who do exactly that and crap all over your boundaries.
So instead, focus on what the end-feeling is that you desire. "I want to feel respected" is very vibrationally different than "I want people to stop yelling at me" because the the energy of being respected feels good and is empowering.
The next thing to do, after you've identified how you want to feel, is to visualize yourself setting that boundary and see what happens in your mind. The reaction of the people you have visualized setting this boundary with in your brain tells you where you're vibrationally at with setting this boundary in general. If they are still screaming at you or behaving poorly, try visualizing being firm with your boundary and see how they react.
You may find that this takes longer or goes down an unexpected turn. You may need to have an anger release around the people involved or play the fairy godmother game to change the energy. Keep playing with this visualization and releasing what you need to until the energy shifts and you can visualize setting a boundary and feeling good while doing so. You got this!
Like what you've read so far? Want some energetic assistance in learning to set boundaries? Sign up for a 1:1 private coaching session with me to declutter your limiting beliefs for good and manifest respect and love.