Boundaries 

Darling You Got This

It’s not the load that breaks you down, it’s the way you carry it  

-Lena Horn

 

From the book Where to Draw the Line, author Anne Katherine writes:

You created this life by the people you let in and the people you shut out, by giving your time to the quests that matter and by letting hours trickle toward lesser goals, through the pursuits to which you gave your energy, by the pressures to which you heed.  Every decision you’ve made, step by step, brought you to this pass.  In short, your boundaries or your defenses created a corridor through which your life moved. 

I write and speak about how to lead effectively in our professional lives, and today I am speaking about boundaries and respect.  It works at home, in your family, and with those with whom you work.  It is a truth for me that respect is not earned, it is given.  It is a value of the giver.  Demonstrating respect for other people is based on the fact that they are human beings.  Their presence exists.  Their power exists.  They live and breathe and they are a member of the human race.  They may never live up to their potential and they may never live up to your expectations.  They are deserving of respect none the less. In the course of working with someone to change their behavior, anger is a poor choice. Healthy boundaries and respect require consequences.  In fact, consequences are the only thing that works in the long term.  So how does one demonstrate respect when someone is careless with your thoughts and ideas, thoughtless in how they speak to you or around you, and shows themselves untrustworthy, even dangerous? Confront the behavior only after and if you have assessed the risk of their retaliation.  If safe, explain how their behavior creates pain and difficulty for you.  Patience.  Persistence.  Providing opportunity for adjustment.  After that . . . put personal, professional, mental and emotional distance between you and them.  Detach from your need they do something or stop doing something so you will feel better.  When it comes to dignity and respect, if it appears no boundary provides safety and security for you, walk away.  For some, seek assistance, establish security, then run not walk, away.

If you ever have to walk away from a person, family included, a company, or a supervisor, you have given them respect in that you no longer require they change. You accept them where they are.  Respect for others gives you the right to choose who is in your life and who is simply NOT.  In fact, Anne Katherine states, the right to say no is the freedom to say yes.  When you have the freedom to say yes, you can stop mourning the loss of what was or possibly what never was yours, and you are open to new possibilities.  What is not, is replaced by why not!

I will admit, it is easier for many to have good boundaries professionally, but it can be quite a quandary to draw healthy boundaries in our personal lives.  Life is messy and less straightforward in personal and familial relationships.  There is no roadmap, but remember the quote that began this message-  You created this life by the people you let in and the people you shut out, by giving your time to the quests that matter and by letting hours trickle toward lesser goals, through the pursuits to which you gave your energy, by the pressures to which you heed.  Every decision you’ve made, step by step, brought you to this pass.

If you are not personally or professionally where you want to be, please remember, you can make decisions today that do not immediately change your position, but your direction can change immediately step by step through every decision you make, your destination.  Personal and professional boundaries that help you maintain good self defenses will create the passageway through which your life moves.  Make it great.

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Copyright 2017 – 2018, All Rights Reserved, The Winning Way

Categories: Leadership

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