One of the things that 2020 taught me was learning how to set boundaries. I realized that I built a lot of unhealthy relationships off the fact that I had no boundaries, and when I started enforcing them, the friendship would fall apart. Well, that's putting it mildly. I have been called many things and treated in very harsh ways as people departed from my life, and the only thing that changed was that I started speaking and standing up for myself. I realized that I had to take ownership of my part in it all. It is true what they say, " You teach people how to treat you." I still struggle with it in a way that sometimes I don't realize that I'm doing it, I'm now learning how to protect myself and what that looks like. I've tried it in the past but it came out as defensive and mean, and I knew that wasn't the answer. I believe that there are healthy ways to set boundaries, and if the person actually cares about you and your well being, they won't take it personally. And for those who do, they are just showing you that your relationship thrives off of you allowing them to cross the line without repercussions. The more I look back at my past to identify how I picked up this trait but also what allowed it to grow, I realized that I had to forgive myself. Forgive myself and accept the fact that I did my best back then, but the key is that I know better now. I know I don't want to be the victim or the angry person which I've been both a large part of my life as I tried to fight my way out of that place. Now, I am able to set boundaries without it being connected to anger or needing to play the victim. A large part of me learning this is, being willing to "sit in" the uncomfortable feeling of someone not liking what I said, I'm doing, or I want to do. I'm learning that I can have a "Do no harm" mentality as I set boundaries AND also protect my own personal well being. If you have a hard time doing this I will tell you this from experience, getting started was scary and hard. I'm just being honest. I am a recovering people pleaser and seeing people disappointed in me was heartwrenching. People being angry with me because I said no or told them that something they said was not okay, was scary to me. Like seeing a monster scary. I had to and still do, work a lot of things out with a therapist that helps me navigate all of those feelings. It helps me identify where they came from while I build new healthy boundaries that support healthy relationships. It's not a quick 5 steps to get these results kind of thing...this is life work kind of thing, but ohhhh is it worth it! It's always great to get someone to help you as you heal, speaking to a neutral source works best for me. Here are two sources I'm giving a try since I'm not able to see my regular therapist at the moment. 1. BetterHelp 2. Talkspace I just wanted to share just in case someone needs it. Until next time beautiful people! FLL

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