“Saying no to others is saying yes to yourself.”
“No is necessary magic. No draws a circle around you with chalk and says, ‘I have given enough.”
“No is a complete sentence. It does not require an explanation to follow. You can truly answer someone’s request with a simple No.”
#2 Negative thoughts destroy only myself.
My first conscious sober act is to reduce negativity in my life.
NO is a powerful word with two simple letters, yet the desire to add something afterward can feel like a natural extension. Growing up, I felt the need to validate any NO uttered with something…. anything. The word NO hung in the air, and the silence following it felt distressing. The more I tried to soothe someone else with my NO, a part of myself was lost along with personal boundaries. However, sobriety and Statement #2 in action changes that.
Learning to adjust to a New Life without alcohol or drugs begins with NO. This is a healthy boundary that gets stronger each time it’s used. NO can challenge negative thoughts, reducing anxiety and/or fears. NO announces that you care for yourself. NO begins to feel more comfortable and settles into a routine. NO engages trust in ourselves. In our WFS Program booklet, it states, “Our overcoming is in exact proportion to our becoming.”
Here is a brief excerpt from Dr. Zoe Shaw on boundaries:
“Boundaries are internal—and sometimes external—lines that separate yourself and your will from someone else’s. People with healthy boundaries value themselves as much as they do someone else. People with unhealthy boundaries either undervalue or overvalue themselves in comparison with others.
A physical boundary clearly communicates: This is how close you can get to me, and this is how much of my body I will allow you to engage with.
A professional boundary clearly communicates: This is how I will communicate with you, and these are my lines for connection and negotiation.
An emotional boundary clearly communicates: This is how deeply I will share my world and feelings with you, and this is how much of yours I will entertain.
A personal boundary clearly communicates: These are the actions I will tolerate in my relationships, and these are the ones I will not.
Expect people to impinge on your boundaries. Your self-care goal this month is to learn to better set and communicate your boundaries and to hold strong when others push against them. Although boundaries may feel like a series of noes, every time you say no to something you are really saying a resounding yes to yourself and any opportunities that will better serve you both in the now and in the long run.
A boundary is not a rule that you impose on someone else. It is a line that you draw for yourself.”
Hi 4C Women,
Boundaries – a skill to promote our self-care in a powerful way. I appreciate the descriptions of specific boundaries that Karen shared. It helps to define the goals for a particular situation and guidelines on how setting boundaries impacts relationships once the boundaries are clearly defined.
It was quite difficult to start setting boundaries as I was such a people pleaser. I love how Karen ended her message with what a boundary is and is not! I am going to keep that in mind when I question why boundaries are so challenging to set and keep, to remember that boundaries are a line I draw for myself. It seems the most difficult is with family because there is emotional history and sometimes complicated, conflicting feelings.
I have learned so many life-changing lessons through WFS. I have learned that sometimes boundaries need to be re-established, and reset. I know this when I feel my boundaries have been invalidated by another person’s words or actions. I used alcohol to escape my feelings of inadequacy and believed I was not entitled to set boundaries. I just wanted to keep the peace and that only led to more self-destructive behavior. I forgot what my needs were in this downward spiral and truly lost my voice. WFS provided a way for me to take back my power in small increments until one day I realized that I had not only uncovered my needs, I was able to express them. That was my first adventure into risk-taking and it felt so empowering. I also learned that if I permitted negative thoughts to be the predominant message I spoke to myself, speaking my authentic needs became intimidating and kept me stuck.
WFS helped me discover that I was worthy of meeting my needs and Statement #2 reinforced that negative thoughts about who I am truly hurt me more than anyone. I began to recognize that I had it within me to meet my own needs. It doesn’t mean that I stop expressing my needs. For me, it means that I can move on, and love myself enough to meet my needs as best I can. I am all about healing relationships whenever possible unless the relationship has become so toxic, it is harmful to my well-being. I also realize how important it is to set boundaries that promote healing. So, again, I go back to the most difficult boundary setting for me – family. These are the boundaries I keep revisiting, work on keeping the communication open, and listening to understand how my boundary is being perceived. Nothing changes without being able to communicate our feelings, our needs, and our path to achieve positive change in developing healthy relationships. I feel expressing my needs is how I show self-respect and honor myself.
What is the most challenging boundary you have set?
What was the outcome? How did it change your relationship with that person?
How would you describe a “healthy” relationship when it comes to your boundaries?
Have you been able to identify toxic people causing harm to your well-being? Have you been able to let go of those relationships? If not, why? This is a deeper question for greater introspection.
Are you open to listening to another’s perception of the boundary you set?
Are you willing to revisit or reset a boundary? This question is important, especially if you learn that the boundary you originally set is not clearly understood by the recipient of the boundary.
What have you learned about yourself in setting boundaries?
Bonded in setting boundaries that reduce negativity in our lives, put our well-being first, and create healthier relationships, Dee
Aloha Rock Stars!
We would like to invite you to the third event sponsored by The Creative Crew!
A glorious, autumn showcase of handmade items by our sisters are for sale. There will be knitted items, pine needle baskets, quilted items, a glass piece, greeting cards galore, and other delights. Buy something for a gift and at the same time support Women For Sobriety, Inc. (WFS)!
Some items will be auctioned and others are offered at “Buy It Now” for a set price. All funds (100%) support WFS.
What you need to do:
·Register or Sign In to the Holiday Sale Catalog at The Creative Crew Holiday Sale.
TIP: If you registered for prior events like The Creative Crew Blooming Sale, your login is still active. If you do not remember your password, you can request an email to reset the password.
·You may now preview items online as they are added to the catalog!
The Creative Crew Holiday Sale opens at 11am Eastern US, on Friday, November 4 … and closes with the auction ending at 10 pm Eastern US, on Saturday, November 5.
The Creative Crew
Women For Sobriety, Inc.