“No” is a complete sentence.” ― Anne Lamott
Entering into the New Year, we find ourselves getting out more, getting fit, eating better, spending time with old friends, and meeting new friends. Often though with amazing technology we also connect through our phones and computers, using social networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter and dating sites.
In my mental health counseling office, recently a client shared with me she saw her boyfriend change his relationship status on Facebook from single to being in relationship with another woman. A different client shared she couldn’t create a separate email from her husband because he checked her phone everyday to see who she texted and emailed.
A woman I know met a man on line and fell in love. They talked on the phone and Skyped for months and then he had a crisis and needed some financial support. She sent him money and didn’t hear from him again.
These situations lead me to reflect on the impact technology has on boundaries. It appears there is an intimacy created online that is not grounded in reality. Take this opportunity to assess your own boundaries.
Do you have rigid, collapsed or healthy boundaries?
Are you more likely to allow others to cross your boundaries or do you cross others boundaries?
Do you find you get too close to people physically and you see them back away?
Do you find yourself alone in a corner in a group and not reaching out to others?
Note that the way you set your boundaries changes over time. You also may behave differently depending on the situation and how you feel at the time. This is a general guideline you can use.
Collapsed Boundaries can be identified by:
- Sharing too much personal information too soon.
- Saying yes when you want to say no for fear of rejection.
- Doing anything to avoid conflict.
- Having a high tolerance for abuse.
Rigid Boundaries can be identified by:
- Saying no to a request if it will involve close interaction.
- Staying so busy you don’t take time for intimate relationships.
- Being unable to identify you own feelings, wants or needs.
- Making little self-disclosure and holding people at a distance.
Healthy Boundaries can be identified by:
- Having the ability to say yes and to say no.
- Being able to hear no from others and seek other resources to get your needs met.
- You reveal information about yourself gradually and self-disclose appropriately.
- You have relationships with shared responsibility for the relationship without blaming.
Check out the full Boundary Self-Assessment.
When I was taking classes in Meditation and Healing at the Church of the Divine Man many years ago, they taught about “matching” other people’s energy. An example is, if you are around someone who is angry, you may match him or her and become angry. When you are around someone peaceful, you can match him or her and become peaceful. I have been teaching this in my counseling practice for years and helped clients understand they can change how they feel by becoming aware and making choices.
I remember reading a study in one of my books (which I will find to update this blog) that had three plants. One plant was the control and the plant was watered without any variables. The second plant was watered with water where someone who was very happy and positive held the water for a period of time and the third plant was watered with water that was held for a period of time by someone who was clinically depressed. Of course, the result was the plant watered by the person who was happy grew the most; the control the second and the plant watered by the person who was depressed had stunted growth.
Physics has taught us that everything is energy, including humans, and it makes sense we affect each other in subtle and powerful ways. When I feel blue, a little grumpy, I will put on a CD by someone like Wayne Dyer to raise my mood, to shift my energy. Conversely, when I binge on music from my childhood, such as listening to Sunday Morning Coming Down, I have to pick myself up off the floor!
What inspired me to write this blog is I have been promoting a program called Habit of Attraction developed by Robert Evans. I have put it on FB, Twitter, Launchpad, sent emails and have become excited and energized about this. This morning I thought I may have gone overboard with promotion and sat to figure out what it is about this that “hooks” me.
I became acquainted with Robert when I was in the Next Top Spiritual Author contest. In that program I set up my free membership website, which has become a success for my book 12 Weeks to Self-Healing: The Gift of Pain. Later, I took his Habit of Attraction course and exceeded my financial goal for the year. Currently, I am in the Write Your Mini-book in 7 Days Course and plan to launch my Less is More: Slowing Down in an Over-stimulating World book before the end of the year.
What happens is I get energized and match his energy when I am in programs with him. I see that his working with others who also are spreading messages of love, light, and abundance also energizes him. In his programs, I have been honored to be on phone calls with people I admire like Neale Donald Walsh, the author of Conversations with God and with James Twyman who I admire for this work as a Peace Troubadour.
My focus in my work for years has been to empower others to access their Essence, to realize who they truly are and to manifest their dreams in their lives. This is the work I see Robert Evans doing and I am focused, energized, and motivated by his work. That’s my answer. That is why I am doing this promotion. Now, if you wonder, yes, I have connected with him in an affiliate program. This is one way I can stay connected to this powerful, manifesting energy.
Please take some time to think about who energizes you.
Who helps you become your better Self. Who leads the way and makes it easier for you to excel and manifest your dreams. Think about who it is that drains your energy and leaves you feeling bad about yourself. Sometimes we can’t change who we are around, but we can use those who are motivating and inspiring to bring us back into balance.