Setting Boundaries to Protect Yourself, Part 1

I catch myself teaching my clients the importance of personal boundaries in nearly every single session. I’ve actually considered recording my spiel and offering it as a download to my readers and clients – because for those who are new to this awareness, it can seem overwhelming. Taking care of your own energy and space takes practice and effort, just like any other kind of personal maintenance.

Suffice it to say, I talk about setting boundaries to protect yourself A LOT.

Imagine my surprise when I wake up this morning and finally drag my butt to the computer to get some work done, where lo and behold – hackers have taken over my website! My first thought, “Um, how can this be? I have an amazing firewall and security system in place to protect me from these meanies!”

And then I remembered… Over the weekend, I was playing with some new features and working on the general overhaul of the website, and I had turned OFF my protection. Silly me forgot to turn it back on.

Today is Tuesday. I turned my protection off on Sunday evening. Within 48 hours of my defenses being down, some random stranger with malicious intent got into my space and started messing things up. That’s pretty quick, don’t you think?

So I spent the entire day working tirelessly to clean up the crap the hackers installed and to revamp my boundaries – knowing full well that until I got control back of my own website, that my Transformation Tuesday post would be late. . . and all the while smirking about how important it is to protect yourself.

As I realized the implications of my oversight, I could clearly see how often this kind of hack job happens with my personal space.

Do I know how to set boundaries? Absolutely.

Do I always remember to set them? Absolutely not.

How about you?

  • Do you know how to set personal boundaries?
  • If not, are you interested in learning more about it?
  • Are you aware that boundaries are necessary daily?
  • What does it feel like when your defenses are down?
  • Do you have personal experience with your boundaries being down and your space was ‘hacked’?
  • How did you recover?

Challenge: Ponder the importance of setting boundaries to protect yourself. Contemplate how often you are actively caring for your own energy/space.

Homework: 
  1. Answer each of the questions – you may want to start a journal or a blog to reflect on your journey.
  2. Share your thoughts with us! (Leave a comment, make a post in the Facebook Group, or even shout out on Twitter!)
  3. Pay attention to how you feel when you are around other people. Do you feel energized? drained?

Extra Credit:

With mucho a latte of love and respect,

Email Address First Name

6 Responses

  1. rachel allen
    | Reply

    Love love love. . I was just contemplating this earlier today. I could go on for pages about it and my personal experiences. Thank you for this post and reminder.

    • Janet Louise Stephenson
      | Reply

      Thank you, Rachel! And if you are so inclined, would love to hear more about your personal experiences with setting your boundaries.

  2. De
    | Reply

    Janet, this is such a great topic!

    First of all, I approach personal boundaries by reminding myself of the following words: Be gentle with my strengths. I learned this from my Great-Grandmother—Ma, who was always gentle with her strengths: wisdom, love, compassion, patience, dignity.

    Because I started young—becoming my own person—producing, directing, managing, supervising, and/or running my own businesses as an investor and CEO, there were times when I did obliterate the personal boundaries of others—power unintelligently used. It was never a good feeling, so it was destined to be dropped.

    During my observation—before deciding on the Pinnacles of M! O! R! E!, I would be amazed by how some people would surrender their personal boundaries, on the following levels: Physically emotionally, spiritually, ethnically, during communication, and as it related to being liked, accepted, loved, and for the possibility of sex. The pattern of quick-surrendering of personal boundaries were often manifested by people who lived as if they were born to please others.

    I spent some time doing business around so-called celebrities/names, where the surrendering of personal boundaries were even more rampant – often not manifested or imposed by the celebrities themselves, but by those you had to pass in order to meet the ‘name’.

    With reality shows; the social media access to the illusion of relevance—people are only too willing to climb out on to the edge of individualism and dump off, abandoning almost all common, acceptable, personal boundaries—surrendering their individuality—their dignity and/or personal rights.

    Janet, I think the overall concept of being self-centered includes the recognition of self identity, personal rights, and M!O!R!E! self-esteem. These are absolutely necessary for retaining individuality—one of the pillars on which personal boundaries are erected.

    • Janet Louise Stephenson
      | Reply

      De Kridge,

      Thanks for stopping by! You bring up a multitude of facets relating to the topic of personal boundaries!

      I appreciate the reminder to honor our own boundaries as well as others’. This is where integrity comes in to play in our interactions, in my opinion.

  3. Mona Kay
    | Reply

    You will probably think this is weird,but really it isn’t.
    Lately I have been feeling badly about my wild kittens,they are so close to almost letting me touch them but always scoot away at the last second.
    While they are protecting themselves from harm they are also not allowing themselves to know the kind and warm hands of a human.

    Likewise a person who builds walls and boundaries so high and strong to keep pain out while protecting against pain you are depriving yourself of experiencing the goodness of people.

    While blocking pain you also block love

    • Janet Louise Stephenson
      | Reply

      “Likewise a person who builds walls and boundaries so high and strong…”

      Yes, it is important to make the distinction between walls and boundaries. Walls tend to keep us isolated from everything – both the good and the bad. Boundaries are essential for allowing in the positive, while keeping us safe from the negative. The difference being discernment and an active awareness… sometimes we forget about the Walls until we don’t even realize they are there!

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