Do you know how to say NO? And really mean it?
The same, do you know how to say YES? And really mean it?
Sometimes asking for what we WANT, stating our own needs, can often be harder than stating what we don't want. And vise versa. Today I'm exploring something I have only recently brought to my awareness ~ and that is How to get clear on personal & sexual boundaries!
I have spent a lot of time the past month hanging out with Tantra & Relationship Intimacy teachers, as well as attending a 5 day live in Tantric Body Dearmouring Retreat ~ in which boundary exploration is critical.
One of the excersizes we performed on the retreat, was saying NO and really meaning it. We had to stand up in front of the entire group, while everyone is repeatedly saying to us 'YES YOU WILL' and we have to firmly state back 'NO I WON'T'. Embodying this with our entire being, standing strong and firm, and using a really firm assertive voice. It really was so interesting to witness myself and others in this activity. I found it very confronting, yet remarkably empowering to really feel my NO! To really feel what it feels like in my entire body what it feels like to state my boundaries.
For so long, in my life I said YES, when I actually meant NO. I wanted to please everyone, I said yes, in hope that I would gain approval, love and respect. When in actual fact it was creating the complete opposite. It resulted in me compromising completely what I wanted, what my needs were, in order to cater to someone else and I would end up resenting them and myself in this process towards feeling love and approval. Ironic, but it is unfortunately how many of us are programmed.
This pushing of our boundaries is a conditioning we often become accustomed to from an early age. Think back to when you were a child, at family get togethers and your parents would encourage you to go up and hug/kiss Aunty Kathy or Uncle Bob, when in actual fact, you didn't feel like doing that at all; yet you conformed to their instructions, and unconsciously were setting up the foundation for your own boundaries to be pushed from there on going forward. When someone now says can you do this, our triggering from childhood patterns flares up and we say YES sure, when actually it is the LAST thing we feel like doing.
I like to look at the boundaries we hold around our sexuality also. As a good reflection of the boundaries we hold in our personal life. So many women, and men say YES to sex, when in actual fact they don't feel like doing it at all. There is this voice within that says if we don't cater to the other persons needs, then they will abandon, reject, or love us less. So often I hear and see people say yes to sex when they actually mean no. Then they end up resenting the other person and themselves, and play out a victim role, completely throwing all their power away to the other.
It is all well and good to learn to say YES and NO... but ultimately it comes down to ~ What in fact are my own boundaries?
Below are a few tips to getting clear on your own ~
Honoring your truth ~ getting clear on what is true for you, in every moment. So when someone asks you for something, or to do something that is taking you out of your own experience. Taking a few deep breathes, giving yourself space to really feel into it. Ask yourself this question ~ Does this align with my truth / Does this feel right for me? / Am I doing this to get something back in return (love, approval, acceptance)? Give yourself as much time as you need to feel into your body and your inner knowingness / intuition.
Never Compromise ~ This may sound odd, to some who are taught that relationships are all about compromise. Well I actually believe no, they are not. If you have to ever compromise who you are, then you are not in a loving supporting relationship. If you are in a relationship of any sort, and you feel as though you are forcing yourself to do something to make someone else happy ~ you are compromising yourself and creating more harm than good. If you need to spend time apart to fulfill certain needs/wants, for example if a man wants to go see a football game and he asks you to come and you really do not want to do this, why the hell would you? Here me now sisters, it is not going to make him love you less! It will actually bring you closer, as you would have had the chance to go do something you really love, and then you can come back and spend quality time together in which you both want to be there.
Knowing your body is sacred ~ Your body and your sexuality is a sacred space. So don't just let anyone and anything in that space. The more you love and accept yourself fully, the less you feel the need to give away yourself to others freely and easily. Because that is essentially what we are unconsciously thinking ~ in some conditioning ~ that, for women all men want is our bodies, and once we give it to them they will love us... WRONG. You are so much more than your body. And if a man/woman only wants to be around you for that reason ~ they are clearly not worthy of you, I mean ALL OF YOU... Not just your body - but your soul, heart and mind. It also applies for men ~ if a woman all she wants is your power (money, status, gifts) ~ you are allowing your boundaries to be walked all over & giving away all of your power. What will empower a woman is to encourage her to embrace her own mature masculine qualities of purpose, direction & presence ~ and to not buy into the seduction. This is setting up a relationship based on dependency, rather than love & sharing.
Love yourself so damn much ~ The more we love ourselves, the less we feel we need to do things that fully compromise and stretch us, to gain love from the outside. We can freely say NO, and not fear that we are going to be abandoned and rejected. Because we always have the love for ourselves nourishing us. Begin to really get to know yourself, and love yourself. I wrote an article HERE on how to love thee.
Get clear on your needs ~ Once you ask yourself this question - what am I needing from this situation? You can openly communicate these needs to who ever is involved, and if they are not being met or taken advantage of, then you can be sure to know that someone is crossing your boundaries. But if you are unclear of what you need, then how can you expect someone else to know, and it is not their fault if they cross the line, because you have not first clearly stated your needs. This is about becoming the victor not the victim!
This is something we explore in one of the sessions in The Spirit Sessions eGuide that I am going to be launching in mid February! ~ as part of the Spirit Session to do with the sacral chakra ~ embodying sexuality & self worth. A critical piece of the integration puzzle to becoming more whole and loving beings.
QUESTION: What do you find difficult about stating your own boundaries? And when was the last time you allowed your boundaries to be crossed? (Please feel free to leave a comment below).
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