Your Painful Past is Your Ally.
Your painful past is your ally. There lie the roads you have traveled, the vehicles you used, and how you became the person staring back at you in the mirror. How often have we said, "If I only knew then what I know now?"
Now is an excellent time to look back and ask yourself, "What should I know today?"
A few weeks ago, I shared some stories from when I was a young girl in hopes you could relate and view some of your memories through a different lens. Creating boundaries is not a quick process. Sometimes, it helps to reflect and dissect some childhood incidences that could hold us back now.
I often hear, "Shouldn't I forget about the past? Let bygones be bygones?" Yes. Also, no. You certainly want to avoid dwelling on the past. We can't change it and can only impact our future by living in the present; however, if the past hurts your current progress, then yes! Dissect your former life as if your future depends on it because it does!
For example, if you related to my story about the bully, you now know you have the power to change your daughter's story. You can teach her to set boundaries with the bully before she grows up to convince herself he’s mean because he loves her. Help prevent her from ending up in an abusive relationship. (As much as you can, she is inevitably her own person.)
Setting boundaries is a challenging process.
Others don't like it when the people pleasers suddenly get a backbone. Also, you may find it challenging to navigate your newfound powers. I have been practicing for years and know the struggle deeply. At first, I felt like I was letting people down. My insecurities told me the people I loved would stop loving me. With time, I learned there is a delicate balance between asserting yourself and not losing yourself or your relationships. Check out “No” is a Complete Sentence to learn more.
How do you know when, who, where, what, and how to set boundaries? Try this.
Picture a screen door. You are on one side, and the person you are mulling over is on the other.
Many feel their boundary-setting skills are weak, so you may be imagining your door as weak. Maybe you are picturing a fiberglass or aluminum frame. You may notice holes in your mesh that others can poke through. Is your door always open? Or is your door missing entirely?
There lies your problem.
You want a door without holes, bends, or breaks that can withstand destruction. Imagine you have a strong screen door. It is so strong it’s like Mjölnir. (Thor’s hammer.) Only you and a few rare-worthy people can open this door.
You get to decide how far you want to go in any relationship.
It's your decision if you want to talk to the other person through the screen, open the door for them, let them in, or if you want to shut the main door and never look back. You are in control.
You don’t care what the person on the other side thinks of your decision, either. Let them think about what they want. That’s none of your business. Your business is your door, your home, your family, your goals, your thoughts, your actions, those are all yours. You are busy enough; don’t take on other people’s responsibilities too.
Release the breath you are holding and take another one in.
You are in control, and you’ve got this.
2 Timothy 1:7 - For God did not give us a spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.