Boundaries..What Boundaries?

A couple of recent events reminded me of something i wanted to comment on and that is the issue of boundaries…

What reminded me is that a couple of people ( in different situations ) saw me become assertive and enforce a boundary and they misunderstood and criticized me for( they assumed ) losing my cool when wasnt i supposed to be hyper calm due to my meditation and energy work.

Well yeah i do use energy work and other disciplines to stay calm and release challenging emotions and one of the important disciplines to protecting my peace is to have good boundaries, enforced in a non emotional way BEFORE it gets so bad I’m a screaming headcase..not that i somehow suck up more junk than is healthy from having some misguided sense of that being a right or healthy thing to do….

I was suprised that my actions had been misinterpreted as coming from emotion as there really wasnt much emotion associated with it, however a little later the lesson became clear – that maybe this person could only enforce boundaries when they’d been pushed too far and at that point it was out of frustration or lack of control, and they has assumed the same was true with me…

We all know that one, we’ve all been there, where we’ve sucked it up for long enough and then we explode… However this wasnt the case because i’d ( very fortunately ) learned a long time ago a better way. I’m not saying I dont get frustrated, I do and sometimes a lot, but I don’t let boundaries be driven by emotions… i use boundaries to protect my peace and thus my emotions….which is after all what boundaries are for.

Like many, in past years I had flexi-boudaries, in other words partners, family or loved ones could tread further over them than others, and the boundary, if there was one, was relevant to the other person and their ‘position’ in my life….

As part of the ego death process i began to see the ludicrous nature of this approach, as boundaries are meant to protect us and its more likely we will have issues with those closest to us than complete strangers, so the ones i let in further were the ones i needed to be especially wary of…..

Working on Ego Death, Zen and other disciplines over the years showed me that boundaries are relevant to me and not the other person. In other words my boundaries should be that everyone whoever they are is expected to fulfil certain very basic concepts of human interaction or for me to interact with that person could be detrimental to my peace.. These baseline boundary aspects are usually things like honesty, mutuality, reliability etcetera….

Anyone whos worked with me knows my all too cheesy analogies and this one i usually say something like “I don’t care if it’s your soul connection, the President, Sant Claus or the Pope, that behavior wouldnt be allowed if your boundaries were in place”.

I think what this person got confused about was that yes i had some frustration with what had happened however the boundary was implemented not as some “sulk” or “tantrum” but simply as a boundary… It struck me that this interpretation has been placed on the same actions before and usually by people who enforce their boundaries when things have gone way too far and the boundary comes more as a last ditch attempt associated with some raw emotion…

I’m not trying to criticize anyone even though i would fall over in pure shock if at least one person didn’t take it like that ( put it down to experience rather than psychic prediction ) ,however it really is worthwhile to remember that we as humans can easily project reasoning onto actions, often to our own detriment as we then base our findings on the wrong information….

Likewise important to take away the lesson that boundaries are relevant to YOU not the status of the other person or people.. then you are likely never to get to the stage where your so upset or so angry you enforce it too late…at which point the boundary is already worthless..

Peace !

Steve

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