I learned a lot about boundaries in 2016. For as far back as I remember, I never really had a voice. I was never able to stand up for myself. I let others impose their will as they pleased.
Over the past few years, I began to discover what it feels like to speak up. Now, when you finally learn to stand up for yourself to someone who is used to walking all over you, that tends to not go over very well (i.e. my last work experience). I stopped giving in. I finally meant it when I said “No, that’s not possible,”. So many other times I said the words, but I did not mean them. They were false threats, and those on the receiving end knew that. They knew I would still keep trying to make it work. They knew I cared. There’s a quote that states, “Never push a loyal person to the point where they no longer care.” Which is why I eventually resigned.
Most recently, I chose to set boundaries with a couple of people in my life. People who have proven time and time again that they do not hold my well being in high regard. People who think they can say whatever hateful or passive-aggressive remark to me without consequence.
This leads to my most important point: You can control your behavior; you cannot control the consequence. You cannot control the boundaries others will impose as a result.
I am no longer going to be afraid of owning my power in these situations; even if it makes someone else uncomfortable. Even if it puts me at risk of misperception.
Perhaps my favorite Christmas gift this year was a Mantraband that says “Let Your Light Shine”.
Its message is this: