Setting Healthy Boundaries-The #1 Obstacle to Healthy Boundaries-Relationship Skills #5

Setting Healthy Boundaries-The #1 Obstacle to Healthy Boundaries-Relationship Skills #5

People often ask me about boundaries: How to set them, how to hold them, and how to manage them, especially with the people closest to us like our children or our employees or our bosses. Well today we’re going to talk about the number one most common obstacle to holding good boundaries. The most common misunderstanding about boundaries is that setting or holding a boundary is mean Harsh or bad . That by setting a boundary We have to be mean to someone else. And people who believe this have in the back of their minds of this idea that in order to set boundaries You kind of have to balance out being kind and being mean to someone While still loving them. I mean no wonder people shy away from holding boundaries because no one wants to be mean. So let’s look into this a little bit more people often associate saying yes or giving someone something with being kind and Loving and they associate saying no or being being firm direct or harsh with someone as being unkind or hateful. Well, let’s let’s look into this a little bit more closely because that is not a fair Association. We can say yes with love in Our hearts or we can say yes with hate in our hearts, and we can say no with love or hate in our hearts So let’s take a look at this chart On the top of this chart. We can see two categories being a loving and being hateful or resistant right so where is our heart when we’re doing a certain action and is called the way of being by the Arbinger’ Institute. And It’s talking about our deeper motivations or our intentions, are they selfless or selfish? And on the left side of this chart We’re talking about soft or hard behaviors, so what type of behaviors were talking about. Now it’s easy to think of the soft and loving behaviors saying things like “Yes. I’ll listen to you” or “Yes I’ll give you that toy that I know you’ve been wanting for along time” or “Yes I’ll let you go visit your friend because I trust you and I believe that you’re gonna be where you say you’re going.” So that’s the soft loving corner of this chart. The bottom right corner Are the hard behaviors with a resistant or hateful heart right and these are easy to understand as well, So let’s take a look at them: They’re Screaming, yelling, holding a grudge, any kind of physical violence, right. These are hard behaviors that come from a selfish angry or hateful place. Trying to force someone to change, Saying no. Just because you’re mad at someone, right. So these are the two Opposite ends of the spectrum and people often think that’s kind of the only way to do it. If we say yes We’re being loving if we say no we’re being hateful well Let’s talk about what it looks like if we’re saying yes, if we’re being soft having gentle behaviors While holding hate or selfishness in our hearts, what does that look like? This is a called soft resistant, so let’s think of a parent who doesn’t want to deal with their kid anymore They might say sure”Yeah go watch TV” I just don’t want to deal with you right now is what they’re saying in their heads. Or a parent in the grocery store They’re checking out- There’s candy in the aisle the kid starts screaming or asking for candy Parent says yes, not because they think it’s what’s good for the child in this situation But because they just don’t want to hear the kids screaming They’re uncomfortable with the way other people look at them, they for their own discomfort are saying yes to the child. that’s considered soft- Resistant. Giving in in a selfish way Here’s another example: think of two people who are dating and the one says “I love you” and the other one says “I Love you, too” But they don’t really mean it- they’re actually planning on breaking up with that person. But they don’t want to have to have an awkward conversation or an uncomfortable conversation. So they just kind of avoid it, maybe they’ll break up with the person through text message Or just stop stop talking into them altogether now this isn’t because they’re trying to be kind or loving to that other person. It’s because they don’t want to feel that discomfort so to protect themselves they’re just being all soft and sweet- But in their heart, in their mind- They know they don’t want to be with this person anymore. It’s perfectly it’s hateful not to break up with someone. But it is selfish to not be upfront with them to protect yourself from feeling that discomfort. A couple more examples like being passive-aggressive or Sucking up to a teacher. You know you’re treating them really nicely to get something from them These are all examples of being soft resistant now. Let’s go to the other corner of this box How is it possible to be hard with your behavior while still being loving? I mean I’m gonna ask you right now Is it possible to go shove a little kid like right into the road and gets all scraped up- hit them hard? Could that ever be a loving behavior? Well, yes, if a car is coming. Right? If a car is coming to hit This kid and you push them out of the way the car, and they get skinned knees That’s the most loving thing you can do for them in that moment. Now I’m obviously not advocating physical violence, but I’m saying that almost all behaviors can be done from two different places- From a loving selfless place or a hateful selfish place so Saying no more TV. Yes. You must brush your teeth. No you can’t buy that toy right now These are all ways to lovingly Help provide a positive future and discipline for a child. If they’re coming from a place of love I once had this boss-his name with Shane Gallagher He’s amazing and he told me a story about a time when he fired someone with so much love and concern for their future That they thanked him afterward and said “I just really appreciate you looking out for me” by firing me, right He fired someone out of love for them and It was because you know the job just wasn’t the right place for them to be they weren’t able to do a good job for The other people there, they needed to be somewhere else So this is the hard loving side of things. I hope that by taking a look at this this chart We’re able to let go of this this false idea that Saying no is just this mean thing. We have to do and balance out with you know being nice Saying no can be one of the kindest most loving things we do for someone. People respond more to our intentions than whether we’re saying yes or no. I mean working in residential treatment I’ve seen two different staff till one child and treatment the same rule “you have to XYZ” and the other staff saying “you have to XYZ” and the child says yes to the one and no to the other Because the child can tell where is that staff members heart is at the time They’re telling them that rule. So it’s less about rules Than it is about where your heart is when you’re enforcing them and setting those boundaries. People will feel when you’re saying no to them they can feel that you care about them when you do it. Some people might get confused by this-thinking that what I’m saying is we should let people walk all over us, or we should allow people to take advantage of us or we should never really do anything harsh to someone else. And that’s absolutely not what I’m saying If someone’s mistreating you is it really in their best interest that you don’t put your foot down? No in general the reason people don’t set boundaries is because they’re afraid of being mean, they’re afraid of feeling guilty, or they’re afraid of feeling scared. So the reason they’re not setting that boundary is not for the other person- They’re not trying to be kind to the other person. They’re trying to prevent themselves from feeling uncomfortable. It’s it’s selfish. Setting boundaries with someone else or telling them no can be the kindest thing we do for them and the most honest thing we do For ourselves but to do it we have to allow ourselves to experience our emotions. Remember the way we get healthier is not just about feeling better, But it’s about getting better at feeling. So we allow ourselves to feel a little bit of discomfort As we set these boundaries, and we’re gonna get a lot better at it. So just to sum things up let’s let go of the idea that setting boundaries is mean and focus instead on Where our heart is when we’re making these choices about boundaries. Let’s focus our intentions on being kind loving and seeing what the other person needs. I hope this was helpful and thanks for watching I Have to credit the Arvinder Institute for my foundation in understanding this principle of “way of being” They go into a lot more detail in their books like the anatomy of peace and leadership and self-deception now They’re not a sponsor or anything. I just really like them, so if you’re interested in learning more about this go check out their books

97 thoughts on “Setting Healthy Boundaries-The #1 Obstacle to Healthy Boundaries-Relationship Skills #5

  1. I have always struggled with setting good boundaries. I liked your point that where is it coming from, and not setting proper boundaries is a selfish thing.

  2. I can't set boundaries because I believe I need that person. Not because I think it's mean. I can often be mean to that person but when thinking of detaching it just makes me feel worthless, like I wouldn't amount to anything


  4. Heard my first teaching on boundaries from the book Boundaries by Henry Cloud & John Townsend. Was like wow, that's it. Very helpful at work but difficult when boundaries aren't respected. But, it's the wisest thing; it is an act of affirming yourself.



    Heart CORE 🔑🔑🔑🔑S
    Emotions. Senses. .
    Thoughts & ideas. Hopes. Dreams. Goals. Have dones : ACHIEVEMENTS

  8. very clear explanation..we all tend to want please others and not realize we could be hurting them or ourselves by giving into their whims..which could rebound on both parties unfortunately

  9. I WAS a walking MAYBE, people could read my lack of self hood and keep pressuring me until l was so anxiety riddled l gave in. Manipulation was all around me. Then l would attack myself by overeating to self sooth my rage. Learn to roar, stay away from anyone you feel unsafe with until you build your self esteem and permission to be real, and NO is integrated into you. We are not responsible for others, your in charge of you only. Never put you second ever. That is sanity.

  10. Selfless= good. Selfish= bad. I’m don’t buying that. It’s not that simple. Giving in to a yelling kid to avoid embarrassment might be self-survival, not selfish.

  11. I was raised to think and feel that way. Shame was the tool. You find out who your real friends are! The FIRST time I said no to everyone of these Narcissistic people they were gone!!

  12. Being selfish is the right thing to do, putting yourself first is the right thing to do. So making synonyms out of selfish and hateful is completely frustratingly wrong in my opinion

  13. what do you do when setting boundaries means you hurt that person emotionally / you think they might harm themselves in reaction to it? thanks for the great advice on your channel

  14. hi,ive been working for almost 2 yrs in a family as a helper,nanny,cook,also discipline a 4yo boy and a 2 yo girl…the 4yo has no routine and no discipline but a loving kid..and i raised the 2yo ,so i know how to handle her…but the boy so difficult,coz the parents have their own different ways of raising a child,mother.has her.own ways also the father has his.own.ways…i tried to.set my bounderies coz i dont want to hurt their feelings as parents,but i can see that i think they dont have enough knowledge about parenting…but its hard…i love them but i can see what is.missing and they think that what they are doing is right.
    the grandparents also see the way i see…

  15. @therapy in a nutshell. Please be carefull with what you say. It's absolutely not true that all behavior can come from either a selfless, loving place or a selfcentred loveless one. This kind of thinking can be twisted in any way people want. Of course you can accidentally harm a child while pushing it off the road to get it out of a cars way. But there is never an excuse for hitting it or touching it in a sexual way. You will be much more helpful by being more clear and firm. Boundaries need to be specified. Especially when we want to protect children and teach people to be better parents.

  16. Thank you so much! It made me think of the parable in Matthew 21:28-32. It never really made any sense to me, up until now. So God bless you!

  17. The next step is how to keep the boundaries once they are set. Certain people don’t respect boundaries. This is a particularly difficult thing to manage when the trespasser is someone you need to deal with ie: parent, sibling, spouse rather than a colleague, friend or dating partner.

  18. Remember this, ✨we are the gatekeepers of our lives… We should put some serious consideration into who can come in… And who needs to be let out. 😉😊👍🏻

  19. God has a law; He has set His boundary.
    The ten commandments are not suggestions; morality and every soul; yours and mine; are measured by the Law of Liberty.
    Our mental health is as good as our experience of God's mercy.

  20. Great video. AND… boundaries are so much about us and our own limits and self care and I think those are the really tough ones to uphold. Would be wonderful to have a video that focuses more on setting boundaries that benefit US versus setting a boundary in service of the other person.

  21. I think the word "selfish" is kind of ambiguous. As is selfless. All behaviour is about making the self feel good/better, there is no such thing as selflessness, nor should there be. Self love is Key. A self loving position can clearly state what it prefers without making anybody else wrong. I think words should be redefined as to avoid all sorts of erroneuos misinterpretations. Especially in psychology there is a whole lot of confusion. Thanks , much love, no harm intended

  22. Thank you for sharing this. I have a hard time knowing what I want or need a lot of the time, but it’s good to keep in mind that I can still do my best to be clear, be brave, be considerate of others always

  23. If even buddhists use the term “idiot compassion” for saying yes to others unconditionally, there’s something to be said about boundaries. Saying no to those whom you feel may be taking advantage is really saying yes to yourself. It’s not out of hate, it’s out of self love, self respect and self preservation. If you are in any kind of relationship with them and they’re not giving you these things already, yet they’re expecting you to give to them, then who is really being the asshole here? 🤨

    If someone is imposing expectations that guilt you into saying yes (example: say yes to (XYZ) otherwise you don’t love them), get tf away from them because they are absolutely trying to manipulate you. But don’t get too angry at them for it as they may not even be conscious of what they’re actually doing, it may just be coping mechanisms that got them by in the past. My mother does this and I can tell and she doesn’t even realize what she’s doing: by asking something from me where she already knows the answer is no because she’s already asked me a hundred times ago and got a hundred no’s. She will keep repeating the question over and over in the hopes this time will be yes. It’s a subconscious attempt to wear down my resolve ; if I have to keep recreatie a fresh new case against it where this time she’ll finally understand, eventually I will run out of “good” reasons and therefore will have no place to go but realize that maybe I don’t have such a good reason after all so all that’s left is to just give in and say yes…at least, that’s the (failed) assumption of how it’s gonna go 😅 This approach however undermines my own agency to make my own decisions, presuming what the hell do I know, that my thought process needs a shepherd and who better to be one than them? In normal people, it doesn’t really work that way and instead backfires, causing the other person to rebel (which I do). The final aspect is self indulgent denial/magical thinking committed at your expense; wishing and hoping that somehow this time the answer will magically transform into a yes, as if all the million no’s prior were all just a bad dream. What they don’t realize is what psin that potentially puts you through. Having to let down someone you love is never easy, imagine it repeating like a sick, unfunny version of “Groundhog Day” taking a little piece out of your heart every time? I’m pretty experienced in the receiving end of this TOXIC behavior; my first husband also put me through this for a few years because he could not come to terms with our marriage really being over.

    Always remember: those who get mad at you for putting up boundaries are the very same people who benefitted from you not having them; saying no to them is saying yes to yourself. Do you not deserve the same yes you give others? 🤷🏻‍♀️

  24. Great video! I identify as a soft "behavior" personality. Learning to say "no" is really important and not selfish at all in many cases. Thanks for sharing.

  25. Sometimes I wonder if being mad (on unfair situations) is okay. Not saying that I use others as punching bags, but like, not faking it around close people. I know someone that thinks it's their fault when I'm sad/mad/etc. And it makes me feel bad because it wasn't my intentions to make them feel that way. Therefore I start faking my emotions and I feel worse.

  26. So healthy boundaries only exist in the bottom right corner of the chart? I find this video confusing. It seems counterproductive to say that the number one reason people don't set boundaries is that they are afraid of seeming mean (true) and then describe what are actually just passive behaviors as "hateful," and "selfish"

  27. I am not afraid of being abandoned by my abusive narcissistic family. I just don’t know how to push them out of my life fast enough. I have always been independent and value my personal space which has been invaded by vampires because I don’t know how to set those boundaries.

  28. I think this is because people who are narcissistic whether in the moment or all the time, emotionally manipulate and cry a river and they guilt people to lower boundary and it’s conditioning – most adults who can’t hold boundaries had a parent who manipulated in order to get what they wanted and their kids carry the torch or are conditioned into caving and “feeling bad”. Mind games. All of our problems really are from people playing mind games.

  29. How does the idea of setting boundaries combine with the ideas promoted by many other teachers of PUSHING THE BOUNDARIES or TRANSCENDING BOUNDARIES and mental Limitations to reach ONENESS ? These ideas are contradictory. I wish people would not give such opposite and CONFUSING signals. One side says be self-protective and armor yourself by putting boundaries, the other says We are All One and boundaries of SEPARATION are an ILLUSION of the ego. Or the idea of having strict boundaries/walls and a thick armor due to early childhood trauma which some other people suggest that are UNHEALTHY and even suggest somatic psychotherapy to remove the blocks/boundaries. These are contrasting views and I am fed up with this. So many OPINIONS around that disagree with one another.


  31. Women are NOT TOYS. NOT Comodities. Not meaningless products to hurt harm REDUCE. BELITTLE. UNDERMINE. MisUse. Or TAKE UNFAIR ADVANTAGE OF their personal private parts. WithOUT PERMISSION.

  32. I don't know that people always feel your intentions. I think the important part is you are clear and know your intention. Thank you for this – very helpful.

  33. thank you! I am working on a master's degree in clinical psychology and came across your channel during my studies. You have a sensibility and kindness that is very easy to listen to. Keep up the good work!

  34. "Remember, the way we get healthier is not just about feeling better, it is about getting better at feeling." Wonderfully worded! I've never taken into account my motivation for setting a boundary before but this realization has made a lot of sense to me. Thanks so much for this video, it is so very helpful!!

  35. I’m curious about how some of the hard loving behaviors, like the example of firing someone out of love, aren’t making choices for other people. I’m not sure how to describe my question. I guess I’m wondering how choosing something that forces someone to do something isn’t a bit like control. I would really like to see the differentiation of when making choices for another person is a healthy, good thing, vs control and manipulation. Is it ok to make those choices for someone else (if they are an adult)? When is that ok or not ok? Is ok to force someone else into a situation/make a choice for them as long as you’re coming from a place of selflessness and love for that person? Idk, do you see my confusion?

    Also, I’ve been reading the comments talking about setting boundaries for self-protection/self-preservation. I’m curious how that fits in with the chart mentioned in the video. Does that fall into the selfish selection?

  36. I disagree. Its not usually selfish to avoid setting a needed boundary. Its more often fearful. Thats not the same thing as selfish. But I get ur point. Its actually better for everyone to uphold healthy boundaries. Its not simply a little bit of discomfort that the boundary avoider is up against. Its often deep trauma. I want survivors to understand this and not give them more ammunition to shoot themselves down for doing something else wrong.

  37. I really dislike your use of the term hateful here. Being selfish is really not the same as hatefulness. While I think any avoident personality needs to work on their boundaries it is completely different to doing something out of hate, which in my opinion has the intention to hurt or upset somebody. Most avoided the types don't like confrontation that doesn't make them demons.

  38. Wow, I am so grateful to have found this channel. I have been struggling to figure boundaries out and in general just trying to grow as a person, be more self-aware and emotionally healthier. This is a great resource!!

  39. This was a very insightful video. I have to work on the way I handle my feelings instead of doing unnecessary things to avoid them.

  40. I feel like there's so many people on the spiritual community that cannot take feedback and no
    They bang on about kindness
    It's like control your mind and sort itself out
    Most of them are energy vampires

  41. Thank You so much for all the effort you put into the body of work you've made readily available. I just came across your channel an what I have watched has been so very helpful. Im in a long term residential program in the Bronx. Sigh I have an inordinate amount of time on my hands an I really need new skills desperately. Thanks again for the insight provided an your delivery is appreciated.

  42. I used to have strong boundaries. I haven't in several years and I've suffered a lot because of it. I'm not afraid of not being nice. I'm afraid of having to end relationships with people. Friends, family, significant others. I realize the reason is because I'm still young but I've already lost more than half of my friends and family, mostly to death. and I think that's the reason it's become extremely difficult for me. I'm just afraid to have to end a relationship with someone I've cared about.

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