You've set some boundaries, but they don't appear to be working. You always feel like others are taking advantage of you. Your self-esteem and self-love are taking constant hits, and the criticism is unending. What gives?
Chances are you need to take a hard look at your boundaries. Perhaps the ones that used to work don't anymore because you aren't the same person. Or it's time for a tune-up so that you can not only strengthen the boundaries you have but also make them healthier.
Warning signs that you need to work on your boundaries:
· You stay silent when someone bullies you.
· You frequently agree to things you don't agree with (such as political opinions) to 'keep the peace.'
· You suffer from guilty anytime you do something for yourself.
· You feel invisible.
· You repeatedly say 'yes' even when you want to say 'no' when people ask you to do things.
· You are the giver in your relationships.
· You give people your time even though you are too busy to do so.
· When someone gets in your personal space, you don't say anything, despite how uncomfortable you feel.
· You don't speak up when someone tells a joke isn't funny - and it seems the jokes are always at your expense.
· People bully you, but you do nothing about it.
· You are always playing the victim.
· People take you for granted.
· You continually worry all the time about what others think of you.
· You over-share when talking about yourself to others.
· You take on other people's guilt as though that will absolve them somehow.
· When someone touches you physically, you don't speak up even though you don't want to be touched.
· Your relationships tend to always be with controlling individuals.
· You see yourself as the 'sacrifice.'
· You feel that if you don't do things for others that they will not like you.
· You do things for others in the hopes they will do something for you.
· You tend to manipulate others to get your needs met.
· Reading this list makes you uncomfortable because you've already recognized more than one thing on it that sounds like you.
It's a daunting list. The good thing is, there is room for you to change.
Remember, boundaries are always a good idea. Ensuring the boundaries are healthy is vital to your development into the person you are meant to become. By examining your boundaries periodically, you will likely see places that need improvement. But you'll also identify where you can strengthen and male them healthier to keep you moving forward.
Sounds like a lot of work, but remember, you are worth it.
So, ready to get to work?
You've got this!