If it was raining and one didn’t wear jacket or something to keep them dry, they would soon be soaked. Their jacket or an umbrella for instance, is then something that protects them from the rain.
However, even if it was not raining one still needs to protect themselves. Their personal space is something that needs to be looked after, and this is not because everyone in the world wants to violate them, it’s because we’re all different.
So what is acceptable to one person might not be acceptable to another and what one person wants or needs, won’t necessarily reflect what another person wants or needs. Based on these individual differences in people’s needs and wants, it is important for them to be able to stand their ground and to therefore protect their personal space.
On The Other Side
There are then going to be people who have a complete disregard for other people’s personal space and violating other people is then a normal part of their life. Violating others is then not something that just happens; it is something they set out to do.
At a deeper level, they might not realise that other people are separate from them; they could view other people in the same way as they viewed their caregivers whilst growing up – as an extension of themselves.
So as some people have boundaries and some people don’t, and even if one does have boundaries there is still the chance that their behaviour could violate another person, it is going to be important for one to have boundaries.
If one was to rely on other people to look out for them, they’re going to end up being walked over. This will include people who don’t understand what boundaries are and people who do.
It would be easy to say that having boundaries relates to what one does to protect themselves, but there is more to it than this. On one side there is what one does to protect their personal space, and one the other side is going to be how they feel in their personal space.
Having boundaries means that one feels that it is safe to be who they are and that they’re protected. This means that one can just be and they don’t need to be on alert or on guard all the time.
Being And Doing
So one feels safe in their body and this allows them to just be, and as an extension of this, one is able to speak up when they need to in order to protect themselves. This will enable them to have a clear sense of themselves and to know who they are.
Expressing their truth and taking care of their needs is then going to be a normal part of their life. For this person, they could feel as though they have their own bubble that protects them. Or one might just feel as though they are zipped up and that they decide when this zip is undone.
However, if this is how they have felt for most of their life, it might be hard for them to describe how they experience life. This is because it is normal and they have nothing to compare it with.
But while some people have boundaries and therefore feel safe in their body, there are other people who experience life differently. It then won’t matter if they are wearing clothes or not, as they are going to feel naked.
Around certain people, one might feel safe or it could be how they always feel, and as they don’t feel safe in their body, it is going to be a challenge for them to have boundaries. They could find that they merge with their environment and whoever they are with.
So if they have a sense of self, it is going to be inconsistent. One could be someone who just ‘goes with the flow’, and ends up the being the kind of person who other people want them to be.
This is going to make one feel as though they have no control and that other people are in control. But while other people appear to have control, they are only triggering what is inside one’s body.
When one is triggered, it then causes them to become boundaryless and to behave in a certain way. So if one had something else taking place inside of them, then it wouldn’t be possible for other people to trigger them.
On the side, one is likely to associate having boundaries as something that will cause them to be either harmed or abandoned. And this could be something one is aware of, or it might be something that is out of their awareness.
As a result of these associations, it is not possible for one to feel safe drawing a line and having boundaries, what feels safe is being boundaryless and giving oneself over to other people.
One is then going to feel as though it is only possible for them to survive by being boundaryless; having boundaries is therefore going to put their survival art risk. Intellectually one might wonder why they feel this way.
However, these associations are likely to reflect their childhood years. During these moments, it might not have been safe for them to have boundaries and even though time has passed, the emotional experiences of the past have stayed trapped in their body.
And all the time these emotions stay in one’s body, they’re not going to feel that it is safe for them to have boundaries. What will feel safe is being boundaryless and letting other people define them. These emotions can be released with the assistance of a therapist or a healer.
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Oliver J R 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.