Before you freak, I’m not talking about sexual assault.
But I AM talking BOUNDARIES.
You see, no matter where you find yourself in life right now, there are times you probably really want to say, “oh hell no!” to someone, but you find yourself agreeing despite your inner voice of authenticity because your inner people pleasing voice is louder.
For me the list of things I frequently wish to say NO to includes (among other things):
- Baby showers or bridal showers (I know, what a bitch thing to admit, right??)
- Being asked to reduce my fee, especially by those I KNOW can afford it
- Expecting to be at anyone’s beck and call
- Giving free advice that hasn’t been offered
- Networking events
- Taking on clients I know I am not a great fit for
Have you heard the saying, “WHAT YOU ALLOW IS WHAT WILL CONTINUE”??
Every time you say “yes” when you really feel like saying “no,” you tell yourself and the Universe at large, that you are totally fine with being treated like a doormat; that you must want more of this sort of thing/ event/ person in your life.
Cognitive psychology calls this self-fulfilling prophecy or a need to confirm an inner narrative. We actually begin to buy our own (or others’) bullshit so to speak.
And if you’re on the woo side of things, we could call this the Law of Attraction or Manifestation.
Furthermore, saying “yes” to anything by default means you are actually saying “no” to other things.
For example, if I say yes to attending a networking event I’d rather be having a root canal done than sit through, I’m also saying no to anything that would make me happy doing during that time instead.
Or if I say yes to taking on another sliding scale client when those spots are full, then I am saying no to the possibility of a full fee client in that appointment slot instead.
Call it whatever you want, but you aren’t getting any closer to true happiness and fulfillment.
In fact, you are truly hurting yourself and further misaligning from your soul’s sacred contract/ purpose. And in doing so, everyone around you is getting a half-assed version of you too so you’re really not doing them any favors either.
Boundaries are like aqueducts.
When we set boundaries, we allow that which we DO want to come in faster/ stronger/ and better aligned with our deepest desires!
So if you’ve been taught that speaking your truth or setting limits is always a negative experience, remember this – Just like water pressure created from limits imposed on water’s directionality, it actually brings you what you’d like even better that much faster!
I have seen this first hand in entrepreneurs who are willing to get REAL CLEAR on who their target audience/ ideal client is. So many are scared to rule anyone out, their business ends up looking like a wide and shallow, still lake rather than a deep, rushing river!
Example from Marketing
When I was setting up my private counseling practice, I conducted some focus groups for my logo. I already knew my niches were in spirituality and sexuality and my ideal client was a woman, likely in her late 20’s to mid 40’s, who lived outside certain conventional norms or wanted to. But how to convey that in a logo??
I used 99 Designs because I loved the crowd sourcing concept and ended up with over 60 entries! Narrowing it down was no easy task.
At the end of the contest, I was left with a handful of finalists, all of which resonated with me on some level and all of which received high ratings from poll responders:
- a peacock/ lotus combo
- a phoenix
- a whimsical tree
- a gold and turquoise wreath combo
- and one that encompassed most of the others
Here’s where things got interesting…the comment section.
EVERYONE thought the first few were “pretty, calming, enticing, elegant etc.” BUT they also said they could see these logos on a variety of businesses including yoga studios, vodka bottles, a ton of other therapists, hotel chains, massage/ acupuncture clinics. And they were right!!
Makes me giggle now every time I see another lotus, or another tree, or another peacock in the Pensacola, FL area, let alone the rest of the world!
However I was still scared about going with my gut and pulling the trigger on the one that instantly spoke to my soul but not everyone resonated with. I was afraid of turning people off.
Then I heard the words of mega soul’preneur, Bill Barren, in my head who said it’s vital to not only get okay with repelling certain people, I need to be able to intentionally do so!
So I followed his advice and sat down to meditate and picture the clients that I know I absolutely adore and want more of and then the ones who I end up dreading and usually referring out or they terminate early.
And then I went back to the focus group comments and looked at WHO was liking WHAT.
Decision made simple. All of my fave people on the planet also liked the logo I did. No shocker, right??
Does it click with everyone? Nope. And that’s a good thing.
I’m not everyone’s cup of tea.
But those who I do click with, I now attract 10 times quicker and stronger than I ever could by watering down who I am, my message, or my style.
Final Word Regarding Boundaries
Just like the Goddess Ishtar who’s been worshiped and invoked since ancient Babylonian times as the embodiment of Venus’ womanly energy, asserting boundaries does NOT always have to feel like a masculine/ active only/ aggressive thing.
In fact, the Divine Feminine’s attributes of nurturing, mothering, sensuality, healing, protection, and wisdom ALL have to do with boundaries!
You do NOT need anyone’s approval. If you seek it, your inner truth is being stifled. A clue that imbalance exists is feeling compelled to prove your views right. Another clue is the inability to share your thoughts and opinions, and harboring feelings of inadequacy. – Doreen Virtue
When a woman (or man) is truly grounded in who she/he is, there is no reason to be militant with boundaries. They simply ARE.
And they are to be respected.
So remember, Dear One, your “no’s” also mean “yes.” Choose wisely.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Tamara Powell, LMHC is a licensed therapist, university psychology instructor, and empowerment coach who believes life should be lived as a journey that is “anything but ordinary.”
Passionate about holding sacred space for the rebels and mystics of the world – the healers, the visionaries, and the creatives, she guides them in bringing their soul driven purpose to the planet in a very practical and powerful way.
©Tales From a Trapezoid, 2016. All rights reserved.