How do you handle conflict? Hide and avoid or through setting healthy boundaries?
Boundaries are one of the most common challenges among my clients. So many of us struggle with it because we have been taught to live by our own rules or put ourselves first is selfish or can damage our relationships.
Let’s reframe this: What if owning our “No’s and Yes’s was a gift to another?”
Putting ourselves first in asking for our needs and communicating our expectations with friends, partners, family, or colleagues can help deepen our relationships because we are authentic.
Through working with my clients, I find the common causes of weak or non-existent boundaries because you fear it will cause conflict or haven’t been trained to communicate your needs effectively. Every person has their way of doing things and their own set of needs, so to understand better and respect how loved ones operate, it’s critical to express how we work and what needs to happen to have our needs met. The basic foundation of boundaries can be broken down into three simple steps.
Check-in: If someone just shared something vulnerable with you, ask them what they need OR if they’re not ready to share what’s susceptible, honor that. Usually, we have a hard time setting boundaries, AND we have a hard time receiving them. If you’re the one being vulnerable, set the stage, “I’d appreciate it if you just listen to me. I don’t want any feedback. Can you do that for me?” Then share if it’s ok.
Start with positive reinforcements: “I appreciate when you X, Y, Z (do the dishes, smile at me when you say hello, etc., HOWEVER, I’d appreciate it if you’d take out the trash if you see it’s complete. “
Say what you need kindly. It doesn’t have to start a war. If you feel resentful, please consider getting assistance first to be responsive and proactive versus reactive.
Remember this a two-sided conversation. But first, you must start with being honest with yourself. Bringing your truth up allows you both the opportunity to collaborate in setting a new boundary that works for the both of you moving forward, built on mutual respect. This will also create more depth, connection, and integrity in your relationships with yourself and them.
In the below video, I go into detail on a basic 101 of boundaries covering Three steps you can start using today to begin improving your relationships! Please note this video is a past recording.
I would love to hear your thoughts around boundaries - share in the comments below! And follow #leslieconnects for more articles, tips, and techniques in healing.