One of the things that is most common in my field to hear about is boundaries. If I could count the amount of times that people gave the vague advice of “having boundaries” without any sort of follow-up thoughts or advice about actually developing boundaries, it would probably be in the low hundreds.
People love to give vague advice. If you have a spirit in your house, you should sage. If you are sensitive, you should ground. If you have difficulties with other people, you should develop boundaries. While all of this may be right on (except for the sage thing, but that is another blog), it doesn’t really offer any actual advice or actual knowledge. It is just yet more surface material, surface understandings.
So let us explore this in depth. What is a boundary? We are all familiar with concrete boundaries– the boundary of our property line, or our state. But we also have energetic and emotional boundary lines. These may be the same or they may be quite different.
Emotional Boundary Lines
An emotional boundary line is how much we are willing to give of ourselves emotionally, and how much we allow in to our personal energy body of the emotions of people around us. This can be a huge problem for Empaths, who generally have no boundary lines in this category, or nurturers, who take on the problems of others as their own.
We may notice that we are giving of ourselves in the extreme in this category. This means that we feel emotionally (and often physically) exhausted after encountering others. Sometimes this can be similar to “compassion fatigue” where we give away our emotions of peace, love, and other positive emotions so that people who are having difficulty can experience them. It is not a bad thing to radiate love, or bliss, or joy, or peace… but it is if it is depleting our own reserves. The peace and comfort and joy we offer others should radiate through us sourced from divinity, and not tap into our personal emotional bank so we end each day exhausted. I think of a lot of nurses when I think of this category, many of whom radiate a compassionate and helpful energy and then end their days unable to move or express love and emotion to their family because they are so burned out.
We also may be a total sponge, and taking in the emotions of others to the point that it is unhealthy to us. We may not even know we are doing this, that the emotions we are experiencing are not ours. We may even have trouble with our own identity (if we are super sensitive) because we are saturated in the emotional stimuli of others.
Although this is simplistic, it really is true that there are givers and takers in this world. Many, many people are takers. In terms of this category, it means that there are many of you out there who take on emotions of those who surround you in order to keep the peace, because you feel you need to, or it may be really unconscious behavior on your part. Many people who take on the emotions of others find themselves surrounded by chaotic, troubled emotionally people. This is because the emotionally troubled chaotic people love you… because they feel better after they give you all of their emotions and chaos.
You may instead notice yourself as a dramatic person, or simply someone who has high emotions (or emotions like a roller coaster) who feels a surge of emotions and automatically notices yourself reaching for the phone, or another person such as a partner, family member, or friend to release your emotions to. You may not realize that instead of managing your emotions that your friend/partner has actually taken them on for you.
We also have energetic boundaries. These obviously can be similar to emotional boundaries, but can be quite different. We all have a physical body, which we think has quite concrete boundaries. Our skin, basically. But we also have energetic boundaries. Some of us may be aware of further energetic body boundaries than others (we actually have a series of energy bodies that surround us and most people are aware and can be aware of the ones closest to them/skin level).
These energetic boundaries allow for stimuli coming from the outside to come in. This can be anything from scents to emotions to physical presence (we have all felt that person that is in our personal field that we just want to back away from us). It can also be what we allow to happen to us, what we think we deserve, and what we are willing to put up with.
I always thank my clients for this, because the people I interact with have allowed for me to have boundaries and to constantly refine them. People looking for spiritual help will test every single loophole, every single boundary, every single personality weakness or vagueness that you have. It has been a real blessing to be able to constantly work on my boundaries, especially because I used to not have any (total sponge) and I have had to build them up one by one so I wasn’t and am not constantly run over by people, spirits, energies, and so forth that do so because they want something from me, or just because they can.
I am not a law of attraction person (for reasons I will not get into here)… but what I will say is that what you think you deserve you will get. If you do not think you deserve to get paid for your work, you will not. And you will get angry at every person who comes to you looking for free stuff. If you think that you deserve to get paid, you still will get people looking to get free stuff, but you will just let them go without any sort of resentment or issues on your part.
If you have taken care of many of your boundary issues (like I have) you will have people that come to you to test your boundaries and offer you the gift of refining them. I really love to help people, to be of assistance to people, but there are many people who are mentally ill who contact me, there are people who I feel like I have the tools to help but the energies I work with say “no”, there are many people who contact me who attempt to take advantage of me by constantly emailing me and asking me for things that are outside of my comfort zone (and outside of the boundaries of what any grounded, reasonable person would ask), and there are people who would really be better served by working with someone local (in-person). Just FYI- I love when people contact me. But I have boundaries. And I stick to them. And if the energies I work with say “no” I have learned to listen because otherwise things go really wrong (and do when I don’t listen).
Simply put, we all should have rules and boundaries for what we accept into our lives. What we are willing to take on. Who we are willing to take on. How much stimuli we are, what type, and through what channels. We should have an unwritten (or written, as that can be helpful) for what sort of behavior, energies, emotions, and other experiences we are willing to allow into our world. And then we should embody that contract we have written for ourselves about what we accept and what we believe to be true about ourselves. We should magnify it and let it radiate from our energy field.
This is not a control thing. Stuff will still happen. But if we do not have these rules defined in our world, in our energy field, we will continue to have people who use us, who control us, who dump their energy into us. If we do not have these rules we may never learn how to manage our emotions and will dump our emotions onto the nearest sponge (taker/person). We do have a lot of control over our energy field, over our belief systems, and what we allow to present and come through to us. We may not have control at larger levels, but we are blessed with an energy field that we can refine and work with.
Part Two of Boundaries will be about how to set up a contract with yourself… and how to set up your emotional field and energetic field to embody that contract.