Right! So, just as I announced last week, I’m going to be switching to a much more video-heavy format. I can’t even tell you how jazzed I am about this. Since I’ve made the decision to begin shooting videos again (despite the heat!), the juices have been flowing.
As soon as we get into the rhythm, we’ll be able to do Transcripts in time for each week’s vlog, but for this week, it’s going to be a bit late (that’s my fault, I didn’t finish the edit until today). Thank you SO MUCH to the oodles of you who offered to help with the transcribing. You totally rock. You truly do.
Today’s Burning Question!
Awesome Melissa wants to know:
How can we decipher the difference between needing to set a boundary with a person versus just having our focus on the things we find less than awesome about them? Case in point – I recently started dating a man who has a lot of really great qualities, but I keep feeling like I have reservations with him because he has a habit of making underhanded and passive-aggressive remarks. I’ve brought it up now a few times and just said basically that I find his comments hurtful and I would like if he stop. He is recently separated and I feel like he is projecting his resentment toward his ex-wife onto me with these remarks. I know this is something I have attracted, I just don’t know where the line is between ‘I need to set a boundary and let this person know what is and isn’t okay in how he treats me, and if he isn’t game, then this is no longer a thing’ and ‘okay here is an opportunity to work through some shit.’ At this point, I feel like I already have momentum going in the ‘I need to cut this cord’ direction, I just don’t know if I’m being premature, although I feel a sense of relief when I think about my life sans this person.
Here’s my answer.
Well awesome Melissa, this is a great question and one that I get a lot! When we’re setting boundaries, how do we know when it’s time to walk away? How do we know if we need to set a boundary or if we’re just needing to clean up our own vibration a little bit?
What is a boundary?
Well, here’s the thing: when you’re setting boundaries, the thing you always want to remember is that it’s not about controlling the other person, it’s about protecting yourself and speaking your own truth, and even though those two things are miles apart, they often get confused.
So here’s the difference.”You don’t get to do that.” That’s trying to control the other person because you can’t tell them what to do. “You don’t get to do that to me.” That’s a boundary. “You don’t get to talk to people like that”, is control. “You don’t get to talk to me like that”, is a boundary.
A boundary is only a real boundary if you’re willing to enforce it, up, until and including, walking away from the person. Think about it this way – if someone is punching you in the face in the playground and you tell them to stop and they don’t, you’re going to want to remove yourself from the situation instead of just continually telling them to stop doing that.
Your Emotional Response
Now having said that, whether or not you decide to stay or go – because he hasn’t respected your boundary, you’ve told him you don’t want him to talk to you like that, and it may be time to leave – but whether or not you decide to go, here’s the thing you want to do either way. You want to sit yourself down (by yourself) and feel what it feels like when he talks to you like that. So when he’s making his passive aggressive little barbs, when he’s throwing those out at you, you had a negative emotional reaction to that and this is what you want to honor. So before you even try talking to him again or do anything – Do this Work.
Sit down with yourself and take about 20 minutes of quiet time to do this. Think about the last time that his passive aggressiveness came up and don’t worry about if what he said is true or not (it probably isn’t). But you’re going to have an emotional response and you want to feel that emotional response. You want to let that come up and go ahead and just surrender into that a little bit. What will happen is thoughts, memories and ideas will start to manifest that will give you information about what this is really about, what you’re really upset about because you’re manifesting this into your world for a reason. Now that reason may be simply for you to stand up for yourself, but you’ve already tried that and it didn’t clear it, so that’s probably not it.
Raising your vibration
Once you’ve done this work, once you’ve figured out what this is really about and let that go, then one of two things is going to happen. He’s going to stop making passive aggressive comments… or he won’t. And it might even get worse because as you raise your vibration, if you shifted this and he does not come along with you, then he may start to gravitate away from you. If you try to then hold on to him, what will happen is, he’ll get worse and worse and worse.
Don’t judge someone else’s negative reaction
Now when you go to set a boundary remember the difference between control and setting a boundary. So what you want to do is talk about how you feel; you do not want to shame him or judge him or negate him. It’s not wrong for him to be angry at his ex-wife, but he shouldn’t take it out on you. It’s not wrong for him to be bitter.
Even though you want to be enlightened, you want everyone around you to be enlightened, people aren’t always going to be. People are going to have their own triggers, their own responses. So do not judge the fact that he’s being like that. Do not tie how you feel to how he feels. So if he’s feeling miserable or angry today, that doesn’t mean that you have to join him in that to keep him company out of the goodness of your heart. You’re not helping him, you’re not helping yourself, and you’re certainly not helping the world by doing that. And you’re not going to resolve the situation by doing that; you’re just going to perpetuate it.
So you want to get into a space where if he’s having a temper tantrum, you’re ok with that. You can walk away from that. You might need to physically remove yourself to make it easier, but that’s ok. So just be ok with the fact that he’s in this moment having negative emotion. But it’s not ok for him to take it out on you and if he doesn’t want to respect that……it maybe time to walk away. And really Awesome Melissa, this is what I’m feeling from you: I think you’ve already kind of made up your mind on what you want to do. You just wanted me to give you permission. But you don’t need me to do that. Your own permission is good enough.
That was my A to your Q. If you like this content please consider sharing it with somebody who would find it valuable as well. And if you’ve had any kind of issues setting boundaries, knowing when to set a boundary, or knowing when to walk away, joint the discussion by leaving a comment below.
Huge happy shiny puppy hugs to all of you, and see you next time.