5 Things That Change When You Start Setting Boundaries
When you first begin to set boundaries, every decision and thought begins to feel like a little more effort. For me, it was scary and exhausting at first. Then it became exciting, it was a little bit of a rush! Every time I set a boundary and there was no push-back or lashing out, my brain would buzz with the excitement of becoming my own person with my own energetic space in life.
Here are 5 things I noticed change in my life as I got comfortable with boundaries.
1 | People don’t really care that much…
Seriously, most of the time when I set a boundary, nobody even notices. It feels so daring and terrifying to speak up and draw the line, and then people hardly notice and I realize this is a normal thing! This is a common thing! This is expected and not actually as out-of-the-ordinary as my self-sacrificing old self thinks it is!!
2 | The people who do freak out about a boundary… they suck.
No offense, but they tend to be the people who suck the life out of me. They’re draining to be around. The people who push back or pout and take offense are exactly the kind of people I don’t want to be close to me in life, and setting boundaries helped a LOT of the narcissistic and self-serving (for them) relationships in my life come to light and quickly dissolve. I simply didn’t have room for it anymore and these relationships quickly faded as I stuck to my fresh boundaries!
3 | There is SO MUCH to celebrate about me, and now I know it!
Before I started setting boundaries, I just wanted to be a cool kid, ya know? I always thought other people were so damn awesome with their bold opinions and independent thoughts they actually spoke up about… with their laptop stickers and posters and the way they were able to project their beliefs into the world… It kinda blew my mind how easy it was for some people to take up space.
Once I started establishing my own boundaries, I learned to get comfortable with what I love and also with speaking up about what I was uncomfortable about, and eventually what I didn’t like or wasn’t interested in messing around with. I did less of what I didn’t want to and became a more vibrant, involved, and less vague person. I grew a personality, basically, and it was awesome!!
4 | I learned that anger is kinda powerful, and not necessarily unkind.
Being unkind has been a massive fear for me throughout my life. I never wanted to be the kind of asshole the man who abused me as a child was, and I never ever ever wanted to make anyone feel the way he made me feel. So I made it my mission to never be anything less than kind. Like ever. To the point that I’d sacrifice my own desires and actual physical needs and comfort for the sake of not imposing any part of myself on another person or their space ever. It’s seriously mindblowing to look back at some of the ways I’ve neglected myself for the mere comfort (or non-bothering) of others.
As I established boundaries, I began feeling more fired up about times when really simple natural boundaries were violated in my past. I started feeling pissed when people would stomp all over me in ways that common courtesy should have prevented them from doing.
Like, one day I was working at a coffee shop and this group of three 14-ish year old boys came over to the couch I was on and started laughing and joking. It was no big deal, I was at a social shop and I expected some noise. But then they started scooting closer to me (oh the joys of being 23 and looking like a 12 year old). One of the boys was practically shoving his friend into my lap on top of my computer, and I went from chill to PISSED in like half a second. “Excuse me, can I fucking help you?” That came out. And it was fire, and it felt incredible. Here’s to standing up to some asshole kids, woo!
But dumb coffee shop drama aside, I was SUPER proud of myself for that moment because it was the boldest thing I’d ever done to not only ask someone to respect my boundary, but to allow myself to be appropriately ANGRY for what was being done to me. How dare someone touch my body intentionally without my permission? I don’t care if they were 13 or 83, that’s not okay and they knew it. Cheers to me, speaking up. Damn right, girl. I love me.
5 | I learned that what happens to me in life has quite a bit to do with my intentions (or lack there of).
I’m not a big fan of the whole “you’re in charge of every single thing that ever happens in your life” philosophy. Cocreatorship though, you bet! I’ve realized when I’m aware of my boundaries in general, I become more aware of where I want to go in life too.
I’m aware of how I treat myself, how I expect others to treat me, and the way I position, present, and frame myself. These things have a huge impact on how just about any situation plays out so it’s been really exciting to see the way my boundary setting has impacted my income and spending habits, the number and quality of clients I bring into my business, my personal relationships, even my dog’s behavior. My boundaries are based on my sense of self worth, and everything else seems to follow that. It’s an awesome upward spiral!
These were just a couple of the major changes I noticed in my life wen I started embracing who I am and establishing boundaries. It’s been quite a journey and I still have a ways to go, but I’m grateful and thrilled by every second of it!
One final thing I’d like to share is that as I’ve become unavailable to anything in life that doesn’t respect my boundaries, I’ve had a flood of exactly what I DO want come in at every turn. Boundaries and self-love are fucking magical, and now I have so much extra energy and mental space to give back and really intentionally have an impact on this world. 10/10 would recommend.