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Givers have to set Boundaries too!

Boundaries... (that big scary word)

Do you know how to set them? The even bigger question is , do you actually know what they are?

In the last few years I've seen so much talk everywhere about boundaries. I personally took a very long time to even discover the concept of boundaries. If you don't know much about me, I was in some Narcissistic relationships where I was mentally and emotionally abused for years. I really didn't know what a boundary was. I had very low self esteem and I really didn't think what I thought or felt really mattered so as you can imagine, the idea of setting a boundary or even saying no never actually crossed my mind!

When I started learning about it, it made sense to me, you know? We need to set boundaries with people, with work, personally and romantically. Let them understand how it is that we want or expect to be treated. In a way its just expressing our truth. People cannot know how you would like to be treated if you do not let them know. They may think "oh ya, Carol is okay with working overtime, get her to do it" or "Ah its fine, Brian is a good listener so I’ll just offload all my stuff onto him."

People do it to us and we actually do it to other people at times! The thing is that the only person who can change this is us when it comes to our own lives. Sadly the fairy-tales, where someone will come to rescue us is really just a fantasy and the only person who can really save us is ourselves!

So why am I writing about this? Well you see, most of my life I was a total pushover, I didn't know what a boundary was let alone how to set one. A lot of people took advantage of me over the years and I had to learn some really painful and difficult lessons. You see, If we do not set a boundary and we do not establish our comfort zone, then of course people will always push past it. People aren't mind readers and if you don't know how to say no or tell them something isn't okay for you then how would they actually know?

Have you ever had a friend and just thought they're fine with me calling over all the time- they never said otherwise so it must be okay, right?

This is why its very important to establish boundaries with people, its not being demanding or sitting kicking and screaming to get what you want, its just setting clear lines on what is okay for you and what is not. This is all well and good but I never fully knew how to do this or even where to begin. I always felt as though a piece of the puzzle was missing somehow.

You see. when you’re a giver it can be hard to set boundaries because you like to give and you like to over extend and go out of your way to help people. Its just in your nature. So the missing piece of the puzzle which I have discovered is the importance of setting boundaries with yourself and this is what I will focus on in this blog, today.

A great place to start is with understanding your values. Check out my blog on values if you don't know what I mean. (We can also organise a session to discuss and elicit your values for a deeper understanding of what you value and discover what you really want out of life. Just send me a message and we can figure it out!)

You see, when you know what you value, this will help you to understand what you want. When you understand what you want you will understand where you can draw your boundaries. It will be easier to stand in your power and say no when you don't want something. It will align you more with yourself and Empower you to become more assertive in your life.

In my own experience, I was afraid of setting boundaries, even when I knew it was the missing piece- I was afraid of the conflict I expected to experience from others. The reality is that when I started setting boundaries, yes it was a little bit uncomfortable- as it always is uncomfortable to step outside your comfort zone but once I did it and pushed through the discomfort, I found that people started to respect me a lot more. I felt empowered in myself.

Remember: this is your life and you should set the tone for how you want to live it! Its not selfish actually, surprisingly I found that it is more so empowering than anything! The other side of this is that when you set those boundaries and let people know what's not okay, you won't be long finding out what people really feel or they will give you an insight into their true colours!

The interesting thing I found with boundary setting was that as an Empath, people pleaser and codependent person, I may have found it difficult to set boundaries with others but one day a light bulb moment came when I realised that the missing puzzle piece for me was learning how to set boundaries with myself!

The lightbulb moment struck when I thought to myself, well if I don't give, then how will people take? So, I went on a journey to discover myself and my patterns.

I wondered;

  • Where was I overgiving?

  • Where was I not honouring my own boundaries?

  • How did it feel to overstep my own boundaries?

  • And ultimately how would I stop myself from doing it over and over again?!

All I can say is that we must learn to take extreme responsibility for ourselves, for our lives and for our boundaries because at the end of the day it is all us and nobody is going to do it for us! The idea came to my mind that givers have to set limits because takers rarely do. If we can learn to regulate the incessant need to over give and learn what it is that's driving these behaviours within us then it will be easier to stop the cycle of being taken advantage of.

We must sit and discover what is okay for us and what is not. We must discover what drives us and what is limiting us!

"Givers have to set limits because takers rarely do!"

It's important to note that setting boundaries with ourselves is different from setting boundaries with others. When we set boundaries with others, we are communicating our needs and limitations to them. This might involve saying no to a request, expressing discomfort with a certain behavior, or setting limits on the amount of time or energy we can devote to a particular activity or relationship.

Setting boundaries with ourselves, on the other hand, is about taking responsibility for our own experiences and well-being. This means acknowledging our own limitations, and making conscious choices about how we spend our time and energy. If we don't become aware of how we are over-giving, we can become so focused on giving to others that we neglect our own needs, and this can lead to a host of problems. By setting boundaries with ourselves and taking responsibility for our own experiences, we can create a sense of empowerment and autonomy in our lives. We can give freely and generously, without feeling resentful or drained

As a society, we often place a high value on being giving and selfless. We are encouraged to put the needs of others before our own, and to always be willing to lend a helping hand. While this can be a wonderful way to live, it can also lead to burnout, resentment, and a sense of feeling drained.

As givers, it can be easy to fall into the trap of feeling like victims, as if we have no control over our lives or experiences. However, this couldn't be further from the truth. We are creators of our own experiences, and by taking responsibility for ourselves, we can shape our lives in a way that feels authentic and fulfilling.

This doesn't mean that we should stop giving or being selfless. Rather, it means that we need to be intentional about how we give, and ensure that we are giving from a place of abundance rather than depletion. Setting boundaries with ourselves can be challenging, especially if we're used to putting others first. However, it's an important part of self-care and is essential for our mental and emotional well-being.

One way to set boundaries with ourselves is to prioritize our own needs and make time for self-care activities. This might involve carving out time in our schedules for exercise, meditation, or other activities that help us recharge and feel centered.

Another important aspect of setting boundaries with ourselves is learning to say no. Saying no can be difficult, especially if we're used to saying yes to every request that comes our way. However, it's important to remember that we have limited time and energy, and we need to use these resources wisely.

In conclusion, while being a giver is a wonderful trait, it's important to remember that we also need to set boundaries with ourselves. By taking responsibility for our own needs and experiences, we can create a sense of balance and well-being in our lives, which will ultimately benefit those around us as well.

Remember, we are creators of our own experiences, and by setting boundaries with ourselves, we can shape our lives in a way that feels authentic and fulfilling.

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Thank you, Lorraine for sharing. Unfortunately we mostly live in an egotistic world. More respect and humility and there would be less need for boundaries. Indeed, ego is the enemy.



Unknown member
Jun 15, 2023
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I agree with you

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