What is clear is that when someone has boundaries, their life is going to be a lot better than it would be if they didn’t have them. The reason for this is that one has their own needs and feelings.
So, while one is an interdependent human being who needs other people, that doesn’t mean that they will always want to do what other people are doing. This is going to apply to the people they are close to, as well as to the people they don’t know very well.
Drawing the Line
Naturally, there are going to be moments when they are interested in doing what one of their friends or family members want them to do. For example, one could be asked if they would like to go out for the day, and this could be something that they are only too happy to do.
At other times, one might have other things going on, or they just might not want to do something. Here, one will pay attention to what is taking place within them and let the other person know that they can’t make it.
Through behaving in this way, it might cause one to displease the other person or, it might not bother them. Yet, even if it does have a negative effect on them, it doesn’t mean that one will have done something wrong.
Ultimately, they will have listened to their own needs, and this is in their best interest. It is not their responsibility to please other people; if it was, there would be no reason for them to have boundaries.
An Empty Shell
In this case, one would be nothing more than an extension of other people, and so their purpose on this earth would be to fulfil other people’s needs. Saying yes, not no, would be the only thing they would need to say.
However, as one does have their own needs and feelings, it proves that they are not on this planet to please other people. Now, this is not to say that one will only think about their own needs and ignore other people’s needs.
Give And Take
Life is, after all, about be there for ourselves and being there for others; if one only focused on their own needs, they would have a pretty empty and lonely existence. Still, it can be easy for someone to believe that one only thinks about themselves when they pay attention to their own needs.
What this could show is that they have the tendency to focus on other people’s needs, or that fulfilling their needs is just a normal part of their life. And through taking care of their own needs, they might not even be aware of what it would be like to neglect them.
Therefore, when one has the ability to say no, it is going to stop them from being walked over. And as one is inherently vulnerable, it is going to be vital for them to look after themselves.
If one doesn’t have this ability, it won’t matter if someone wants to walk over them or not. What this comes down to is that if one doesn’t let another person know that they don’t want to do something, there will be no need for this person to change their behaviour.
A Clear Message
By speaking up and standing their ground, one will be letting someone know when they don’t want to do something. And if this is someone who has no interest in walking over others, they will be pleased that one has made this clear.
But while having boundaries is the ideal, it doesn’t mean that everyone on this planet has them. When one doesn’t have them, there is a strong chance that they have always experienced life in this way.
One could believe that they don’t have a say when it comes to how other people treat them, and that they have to please them. Their needs are then going to be put to one side and their priority will be to fulfil other people’s needs.
It could then seem as though one is a selfless human being and that they are doing the right thing, but this is going to be nothing more than an illusion. If they were to take a closer look, they would see that one is neglecting themselves.
One is then not simply a selfless human being; they are someone who is too concerned with other people’s needs and feelings. In addition to this, one could have people in their life who are abusive.
This is likely to mean that one is used to feeling angry, frustrated and as though they have no control over their life. Thus, it is going to be a challenge for them to feel good about themselves.
The Main Difference
If one was to get in touch with what is taking place within them, they are likely to find that behaving in this way is what feels safe. It might be hard for them to understand why this is; especially as this is causing them to suffer.
Then again, one might be only too aware of why this is what feels safe. What one may find is that their early years were a time when they were walked over by their caregiver’s.
In The Beginning
During this time, their caregiver/s wouldn’t have been able to accept the fact that they had their own needs and feelings. It wouldn’t have mattered if one wanted to do something, as they wouldn’t have had a choice.
One would then have learnt that it wasn’t safe for them to listen to their own needs and feelings – if they did, it would have caused them to experience even more pain. Time has then passed but what took place is still defining their life.
If one can relate to this, and they want to change their life, it may be a good idea for them to reach out for external support. This is something that can be provided by a therapist or a healer.
If you feel this has been of value, please leave a comment, like or get in touch. And feel free to share this article, as many others have.
Oliver JR Cooper
Oliver JR Cooper
Author of 26 books, Transformational Writer, Teacher & Consultant.
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That which is contained within these articles is based on my own empirical understanding and is true for me at the time they were written. However, as I continue to grow, what I perceive as the truth will inevitably change and as a result of this - parts of these articles may not reflect my current outlook.