A very helpful book I have been reading lately is Dr. Henry Cloud’s Changes That Heal. He is also the Co- Author of Boundaries another super helpful, life book.
Although I always knew I had boundary issues, I never understood how many boundary issues I had in relation to how I see myself. This is truly eye opening to me! I have always felt guilty for having boundaries! I would feel selfish and like my needs weren’t as important as putting other’s needs ahead of mine. We have all seen people abuse these things, infringing on or controlling people….and I guess as a Christian, I just thought the opposite was true but I was distorted in my thinking.
I want to share some thoughts from his book for us to consider. …
- “We have all grown up in a world that is severely mixed up about where one person begins and another ends. As a result, we grow up understanding what we own and what we don’t, what we are responsible for and what we are not.”
- “As a result of injuries and fallenness, we distort God’s reality. Just as we need to clear up distorted thinking in the area on bonding, we need to clear it up in the area on responsibility.”
- “Probably the biggest problem to work through in terms of boundaries, is the guilt we may feel in realizing freedom to own our own life. Many people have been taught that they are selfish and bad for not being responsible for others’ feelings, behaviors, and choices…this teaching keeps codependent behavior going.”
- “People who make the remark, “I am selfish for owning my own life” may have been told, “you are selfish if you do not give me what is yours.” When people are vulnerable to control, they feel that they are selfish for deciding what to do with their own property. In reality, deciding for ourselves is the only way we can ever have true love, for then we are giving freely.”
- “My wants are not important”, denies one’s life in an unbiblical way. We are told in the Bible to deny ourselves, but we can only do this if we first own ourselves. People who do not own their own lives cannot give them away! We must be good stewards of our lives before we can give to others.”
That’s a lot to chew on right there. It is a lot to consider and weigh. I am going to bet that these statements are challenging to you in some way, they are to me. Depression, Blaming, Victim Mentality, Panic, Passive Aggressiveness and Resentment are just some of the symptoms that can result from these lack of boundaries! I know I have dealt with these and I know a lot of others do as well.
I picked the photo above because most of us think of property when we think of boundaries. I have been thinking of myself like a property …deciding what is “in my yard” and isn’t. I have found some one else’s trash in my yard a few times lately!! It isn’t mine!! It is the first time I have ever thought of it in that way. I hope this has been holistically helpful to you as you begin your week!
What ideas do you have about boundaries? We want to hear from you today!!