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Boundaries. GET SOME!

1 Apr

So, I am learning a lot lately on the concept of BOUNDARIES.  And so far, I’ve learned two important aspects that I need to implement now.  Like YESTERDAY.  More like, “WHY in the HECK didn’t I think of this before?”  I feel like if I had done something like this earlier, I could have saved myself a CRAP TON of heartache.  Ugh, don’t you hate that?!  Learning something after the fact, after it really could’ve come in handy.  Argh!  Life can really aggravate me sometimes!  Well, to be more honest, I aggravated myself by the way I lead my life sometimes………..

Boundaries.  For me.  For you.  For everyone.  Jump on my new Bandwagon with me. We’ll have fun.

Aspecto Numero Uno – To protect other people from you:

I need someone to tell me when to stop.  I can be too forceful.  Too opinionated (thanks goodness for blogs right?!). Too BOSSY.  Too quick to make up my mind.  I NEED someone to shake me by the shoulders and say, “Enough already!!!!!” I am learning that most times, NO ONE in my life really wants to hear what I THINK they should do.  If you’re bossy like me you KNOW it’s true!! PEOPLE ARE GOING TO DO WHAT THEY WANT TO DO.   I think they just ask for advice to make themselves feel better about the choice they’ve already made in their head.  How would they feel better?  Because now, they can give themselves reassurance that indeed, they asked for advice!  Whatever decision is made, it’s not impulsive!  So WHY, WHY, WHY do I keep telling people what to do???  Who made me Queen of the world? No one. But I do think I would make a great Queen if there are any countries looking. I’ll need a clothing allowance.  Just sayin’.

It stinks when people ask and don’t take your advice doesn’t it?  That phrase, “I told you so.”  It sucks.  It sucks to hear and it sucks to see someone struggle when, IF they had ONLY JUST LISTENED, it could have been avoided!!! If you like saying, “I told you so” I would like to know why, because I HATE IT!

Example: “Cecilia, my husband and I are fighting a lot over _______.”  (Money, kids, sex, religion, in-laws, ex’s, you name it)

The old me: “Well, you should get it together and stop doing _______.  That’s why you guys are fighting and if you don’t do _____ it’s just gonna get worse and then ______ will happen and it be worse and then you’ll get divorced.”  That’s a summed up version, because basically, I can talk for muuuuuch longer than that.

The ideal me: “Man, I am really sorry to hear that.  How can I help?  I will pray for you guys.  I can watch your kids when you’re in marriage counseling.  I can make you dinner to take the pressure off for a night. Is there anything in the BIBLE about that, it’s pretty much the bomb diggity as far as life lessons go. Let me clarify, are you wanting an opinion or are you just wanting to vent?”

Somewhere between the ideal me and the old me, is where I am right now.  Where are you?  You might not be bossy.  Maybe you’re smug.  Maybe you’re judgemental.  Maybe you’re an emotional roller coaster. Maybe you give and give until you’re empty. Maybe you gossip. Maybe you’re a narcissist.  We’ve all got our flaws.  You know in your heart of hearts what yours are.  Pray about it and ask God for a solution to save your relationships.  I did and boy, we came up with an answer!!  For whatever reason, God made me exactly the way I am.  It’s my challenge to find a way to channel that into something that reflects LOVE.  One of my son’s favorite books says this phrase, “I’d rather be helpful than hurtful.”  I had to start asking if I was helping or hurting with my opinions.  Here’s what I figured out with a little help from praying about it:  Ask people for a boundary and respect them.  I actually did that just today, and I really think it’s going to ease some tension in my friendship.  I asked my friend to tell me whether or not she wants my opinion and I promised to stick to it.

A woman I know offered a little advice on boundaries, “If we start out our relationships with boundaries, we stay in control. It takes more work, more effort and carries more risk to create boundaries after things go awry than if we do it ahead of time.”

Aspecto Numero Dos – To protect yourself from others:

Who takes advantage of you? (One friend had a person stay for five days when they only agreed on three!)  Who hurts your feelings?  Who makes you feel less than the super cool person you are?  I am hoping that it’s not someone you call a friend.  Read my blog on Friendship, and release that person into the ACQUAINTANCE ZONE.  I’m guessing it’s the people you can’t get rid of.

Um, not that you’d want to….

Your parents, your siblings, your boss, or maybe even your spouse?  LISTEN TO ME.

wait.  Ah shucks, there I go again, telling you what to do. BUT!  You’re reading this blog so you’ve basically signed up for my opinion.

So, LISTEN TO ME MY FRIENDS.  We are getting hurt because we have no boundaries. END OF STORY.

Remember Dr. Phil?  For some reason in my early twenties I was kinda obsessed with him.  Don’t ask.  He said something that I will NEVER forget.

“YOU TRAIN PEOPLE HOW TO TREAT YOU.”

What?

Lemme break it down for you:  I know you love your Momma.  And I know your Momma loves you.  And I also KNOW that it drives you bat guano crazy when she criticizes your spouse/kids/job/life/finances/muffin top/ and so forth.  I hope you like your Boss. Or at least you NEED this job.   And I hope he (or SHE!) values you.  But I KNOW it drives you bat guano crazy when he (or SHE!) gives you work at the last-minute/micro-manages/gossips about your co-workers and so forth.  So set a boundary.  And reset. And reset again.  Set a boundary until that other person knows how you want to be treated!!

For your Momma: “Mom, I love and appreciate that you have some great advice to offer, but I really NEED to figure out what works best for ME right now.  Please give me a chance to do that.  I could really use your support, not your critiques.  I’m not in a place where I can hear that with love, no matter how constructive you mean them to be.”  Something to that effect I think would really go a long way.  She doesn’t stop?  Sometimes Mommas can be persistent.  “Mom, remember when I said I would rather have your support than your judgements?  I’m not sure you heard how seriously I feel about that.  From now on, let’s put this topic on the shelf.  I’ll ask for your advice when I think it’ll come in handy.  How’s the weather?”   Sometimes Mommas can be persistent AND carry boundary-knocking sledgehammers. “Mom, I love you and I know you love me.  Please give my requests some respect.  If you can’t withhold your judgements, which really hurt me, we aren’t going to be able to talk until you can.”  Hardcore?  I know. I am not suggesting that you cut ties with your family without provocation.  But man!!  They can hurt you.  They know how.  And you can still be honorable and respectful and refuse to sign yourself up for abuse.  TRAIN YOUR LOVED ONES on the way you want to be treated.

For your Boss: “Thanks Mr. Miyagi for trusting me with all this responsibility. How am I supposed to wax on AND off, on top all this other work?  I am grateful and excited for the opportunity to show you that I can handle it.  I am going to need to prioritize to get these things to get them done in a timely manner.  Can you show me what you want done right now, and which tasks can wait until the end of the week/month/quarter?”  DO NOT, I repeat, DO NOT get fired over this blog.  DO NOT GET FIRED OVER THIS BLOG.  DO NOT!!!  If your boss takes advantage of you and you need the income to feed your children, DO NOT make demands of them.  DO NOT GET FIRED OVER THIS BLOG!!!!!!!!!!!  Be persistent but not INSISTENT!  Roger that? And look for another job, WHILE YOU HAVE THAT ONE.  DO NOT GET FIRED OVER THIS BLOG!!  Ask for a plan that he (or SHE!) approves of.  If they can’t give that to you, make one yourself and then make sure you’re on the right track to complete the assignments the way they want them.  Should I say it again?  Just in case? DO NOT GET FIRED OVER THIS BLOG!

Boundaries.  They’re like well-tailored trouser pants.  Everyone needs them.  They aren’t easy to find.  And sometimes you’ll have to sacrifice something to get them.  But once you find some that work for you, you’ll never buy cheap pants again.

I hope you can be successful.  Be helpful, not hurtful. Be respectful but not a whipping post.  Train others how to treat you. DON’T GET FIRED!  

Reflect God’s LOVE. 

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My Creed

7 Aug

There’s  a loving God who created us and this world. My God is not exclusive, he loves us equally and unconditionally. Jesus’ life is a perfect example of true love, mercy and forgiveness and we should all endeavor to become more like Him. There are two parts of the Bible which are equally important and will lend wisdom, comfort, and guidance to its reader. A person’s identity is not in their income, race, sexual preference, nationality or ability. It is instead found in a relationship with God. He above all things, requires us to LOVE one another, even our enemies.

Unfortunately, Christians do a lot to turn people away from God. This makes my heart ache. Somehow, many Christians today get lost in the public denouncement of other’s lives when they should be over flowing with love. It is NOT our jobs to judge another’s choices!! Instead, we should focus on building relationships, community, and helping others.

I hope that if you are a person who has had a negative view of Christianity, you will be encouraged by my Truth. Even further, open a Bible and read for yourself about God’s love for you. I can promise that the deepest part of your soul will resound with joy!

“John 15:9-17 As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Abide in my love. If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love. These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full. “This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends. You are my friends if you do what I command you. No longer do I call you servants, for the servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you. You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name, he may give it to you. These things I command you, so that you will love one another.”

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