Healthy Boundaries by JoAnna McConnell Ancient Awakenings
What Are Adult Relationship Boundaries?
Boundaries are Safety zones. When we cross another’s boundary we will know it by the response we get. The response could be sullen, withdrawn, angry, upset, embarrassed, sad, etc. But the response is not a happy one.
To Begin with:
Listen for boundaries and don’t judge them. For example, my adult children want to be “adults”. So when I want to give unsolicited advice or tell them what they should do or believe I have crossed a boundary. The response from them is often anger or frustration and a feeling that I do not understand or want to understand their point of view. It is disconcerting and disrespectful to them, even though that was not my intention. That is a boundary for them.. to be independent and have their opinions respected.
A way to help with communication and exploring where the boundary lies is to always ask. Can I offer my experience? Can I help in some way? Can I provide another way that has worked for me? If the answer is no, the boundary is non-negotiable and must be respected in order to maintain a honest and trusted relationship.
Boundaries are created by us to help us navigate our relationship environment in a safe way and feel validated in the process. The boundary may not be understood by the one observing it, but it must be honored none the less.
Boundaries create comfort, safety, and validation of needs, wants and desires.
It takes a conscious effort to notice another’s boundary and respect it, because we are busy wanting our own boundaries to be validated. If we want to create harmony in our relationship environments, consciously allowing a boundary to exist (no matter what our judgment or opinion is) creates s safe and validated feeling for another, which in turn allows them to behave that way toward us.
The road to neutrality is a conscious effort to let go of our judgments and opinions about all others. It starts with noticing how we try to break down another’s boundaries, which in turn creates a feeling of chaos for them and ultimately for us.
The answer for me is to work on respecting and allowing boundaries to be validated for myself and others.