Enforcing your boundaries does not mean you’re a bad person

If you follow me on Instagram, you would’ve seen that my latest post there was around the topic of enforcing boundaries. I’ve decided to take up this thread and dive a bit deeper into this for this month’s article.

To keep a long story short, as a small business owner, I am reliant upon income coming in from the amount of clients that I see. Like many small business owners, sometimes I need to compromise a bit in order to ensure that I have at least some money coming through the door to pay the bills. When I decided to start offering online shamanic healing services, one of the things I didn’t really think about was ensuring that I was actually being paid for my services. I’m the type of person who tries to see the goodness in everyone, so I just trusted that the clients who were attracted to my services would have integrity and pay for my services (whether it was before the session or after the session).

So I ended up having a client who had a session and did not pay me. To date, I still have not been paid, and I’m not sure whether I actually will be. It made me think about my position on the boundary that I had placed for myself (i.e. not asking for payment before a distance session). I then decided that the boundary that I had drawn was not one that respected or valued myself for the services that I provide which has then led me to re-define the boundary – all online/distance/phone healings will require full payment prior to the session.

In drawing the new line in the sand, I did have thoughts about whether I was a “bad” person for requesting payment up front. If I wanted to help people, have I not just stopped those who perhaps really need my services from coming to me? I decided that only those who were willing to pay for my services actually understood the value of it and therefore would gain the most benefit. It is not my job to fix people, it is their job to “fix” themselves. My job was just to help people find more of their true essence.. and you know what? I’m OK with that. 

At the end of the day, I think most of us live our lives trying to be “good” – whatever that means. Many of us have equated being good to self sacrifice, and I guess you could even then say that self sacrifice is a form of suffering. Society has a lot of answer for when it comes to the definitions of “good” and “bad” and especially in the form of you are “good” if you help others to your own detriment.

For example, look at those in “helping” professions such as the health sector. Many of these people expend so much energy helping others, they work around the clock to ensure that other people are “better”, and yet many of them don’t extend the same service to themselves… because if they were to take a little bit of time out to look after themselves, they are “selfish”. Many people who are like this tend to feel extremely guilty if they take some time out to “fill up their own cup” (e.g. mothers). 

There’s a saying out there which goes along the lines of “how you allow others to treat you is how you treat yourself“. So if you allow others to take advantage of you, to me it shows that you actually don’t feel that you a deserving of being treated with respect, you yourself do not feel that you are worthy of being treated well and on a deeper level, you don’t feel that you are “good” therefore you “punish” yourself by letting others mistreat you.

It is my belief is that a person’s true essence is ALWAYS good. I’m talking about the true essence of someone (or in other words, the true nature of all human beings), not who someone is as a result of societal/parental/ancestral beliefs, patterns, behaviours, experiences etc. So given this, it is my belief that establishing and maintaining healthy boundaries is crucial to our own wellbeing. There is nothing selfish or “bad” about taking time out to make sure our own needs are met before looking after someone else. As one of my friends told me “You have to put the oxygen mask on yourself first before you put it on someone else”. If we can’t look after ourselves and constantly look to someone else to do it for us, that can lead to very dangerous forms of co-dependency and addiction. 

So don’t be afraid of creating boundaries and enforcing them if they are a way for you to respect yourself and to ensure that your own needs are met. From a energetic perspective, issues with boundaries and self esteem and self worth tend to be connected with the solar plexus area of a person, which is the area below the ribs and above your belly button. If these issues are unresolved from an energetic perspective, this could lead to people having gut issues, troubles with their weight and also troubles maintaining energy levels (as they allow other people to drain their energy). 

The main question to ask yourself is – How do you want to be treated? Do you want to be treated with respect and not taken advantage of? Then it’s time to put in place boundaries to ensure that that becomes a reality for you.