Boundaries

REV S Brandt

BOUNDARIES
Can I set limits and still be a loving person
What if someone is hurt by my boundaries?
Aren’t boundaries selfish?
Why is it difficult for me to hear no from others?
Questions
1. What problems have you taken on that God may never have intended you to take on?
2. What motivated you to take on those problems you just listed?
3. Why are you confused about boundaries – about when and how to draw them for yourself whether drawing boundaries is ok? What happened to foster that confusion?
4. Why are Christians especially susceptible to confusion about boundaries?
5. What boundaries in the physical world do you deal with everyday?
6. What kind of boundaries do you think need to exist in the Spiritual world?
7. Why are spiritual boundaries as important as physical boundaries?
8. Explain how knowing what you are to own and take responsibility for gives you freedom?
9. Why does pain result when we are not shown the parameters of our soul or are taught wrong parameters?
10. When has someone in my life followed Christ’s example of sacrificial love and denied himself in order to do for you what you could not do for yourself?
11. Which boundaries when they are set by other people do you need to do a better job honoring?
12. Why do you have a hard time honoring people’s boundaries?
13. What will you do to be more respectful of the boundaries of the people in your life?
14. What do you do with your feelings? Ignore them or let them be in charge.
15. What do you do with anger?
16. Do you tend to feel responsible for other people’s feelings, choices and behaviors?
17. In what areas of your life or for which people in your life do you do this?
18. How often do you use the phrases “I had to” when you explain why you did or didn’t do something?
19. What choices in your life have you failed to take responsibility for whom you are blaming for what circumstances in your life?
20. When have you been caught up in the valuing the approval rather than the approval of God.
21. What lesson did you learn from that experience?
22. Where in your life today would you do well to limit your exposure to someone?
23. Why would that be a wise move?
24. What is keeping you from doing so?
25. Name one area of your life where you would do well to think through some issues for yourself?
26. Consider past relationships where do you see not that you had distorted ideas about the person involved?
27. Where might you now be failing to see people as they really are?
28. Why might you have difficult giving or receiving love?
29. What healthy Godly relationships nurture you?
30. As you were growing up, what did you learn about setting boundaries and saying no?
31. When have those things been good or bad?
32. Do you condemn yourself for things God does not condemn you for?
33. When have you been compliant on the inside as you said yes to some responsibility?
34. Are your boundaries more like walls than fences?
35. Do you experience your legitimate needs and wants as something bad, destructive or shameful?
36. When have you come up against and aggressive controller?
37. What did he/she demand of you?
38. When have you felt an aggressive controller’s failure to accept you as you are?
39. How did you deal with this?
40. When have you acted lovingly in hopes that you would be loved in return?
41. Did it work?
42. God wants us to take care of ourselves so that we can help others without moving into a crisis ourselves?
43. How good are you of taking care of yourself?
44. How does taking care of you or not taking care of yourself affect your ability and willingness to help other people?

10 Laws of Boundaries

1. Sowing and Reaping
2. Responsibility
3. Power
4. Respect
5. Motivation
6. Evaluation
7. Pro-activity
8. Envy – a sign something is lacking
9. Activity
10. Exposure

Freedom First, Service Second
1. What current circumstances call for you to set boundaries?
2. If you set boundaries, what pain or disappointment might you cause someone you love?
3. Will that pain harm the person?
4. Whom would you like to be able to confront about their wrong actions?
5. How would you like to respond to the person you confront if she/he is hurt by the words that you speak? Remember that hurting a person does not necessarily mean harming them.
6. How do you intend to respond when someone confronts you with truth about your wrong behavior?
7. It what relationship is it time for you to move past the reactive to the pro-active and begin living out the power of love?
8. Explain the difference between needs and wants?
9. What is the difference between selfishness and stewardship when it comes to setting boundaries?
10. Whose boundaries do you have trouble respecting?
11. When have you seen others use boundaries ad an offensive weapon?
12. How have you responded when someone has maintained boundaries despite my legitimate needs?

BOUNDARY MYTHS
1. If I set boundaries I ‘m being selfish.
2. Boundaries are a sign of disobedience.
3. If I begin setting boundaries I will be hurt by others
4. If I set boundaries I will hurt others.
5. Boundaries mean I am angry.
6. When others set boundaries it hurts me.
7. Boundaries cause feeling of guilt.
8. Boundaries are permanent. I am afraid of burning my bridges.
9. Where have feelings of obligation prevented you from setting boundaries?
10. What boundary have you failed to set out of fear that it would be permanent?

LIMITS WITH NEEDY FRIENDS
1. Do you approach friendships as ministries – or do you know someone who does?
2. In what relationship have you been the minister, the rescuer?
3. Why did you choose this role for yourself?

WORK
1. How much overtime do you work?
2. If the amount is excessive, why do you log so many hours?
3. What is keeping you from talking to your supervisor and setting limits?
4. Having limits will force you to prioritize and work smart. (We all know how work grows to fill the time you set aside for it). Establish a time budget – list the various aspect of your work and assign the maximum of time you will spend with each and start living by this schedule.
5. What unrealistic expectation do you have for your work?
6. What unmet childhood needs do you hope to have met?
7. Do you use food as a false boundary to avoid intimacy by gaining weight and becoming less attractive?
8. Do you binge finding the comfort in food less scary that the prospect of real relationships?
9. Where do you find yourself not doing what you want to do and doing what you don’t want to do?
10. How forgiving are you of yourself when you fall?
11. What does the inner self tell you when you struggle?
12. Who in your life offers empathic feedback that you will listen to?
13. Who speaks truth in love to you?

14. Are you comfortable expressing anger at God? Why or why not?
15. If you are able to express anger at god, how do you do that?
16. What would you like to be angry at God about?
17. Why do some people react to others boundaries with anger?
18. What is the difference between forgiveness and reconciliation?
19. What unmet childhood needs have resulted in broken places inside you?
20. What grieving will you have to do if you forgive those who owe you for some past hurt?
21. Who are you afraid will abandon you if you set boundaries?
22. You have to be able to feel the anger when you’re violated, manipulated or controlled. Do you give yourself permission to feel angry? Are you aware of when you’re being violated?
23. What experiences or relationships helped you get in touch with your anger, resentment and frustration and enabled you to see that you wanted to be treated differently.
24. How do you respond to others boundaries?
25. When has someone stepped in and rescued you from the consequences of your actions.
26. When have you been a rescuer?
27. When have you tried to confront the person you have rescued about his or her irresponsible behaviours? What resulted from the confrontation?
28. Where are you trying to take responsibility for someone else’s personal and spiritual grown?
29. Who are you trying to change?
30. Whose boundaries do you need to have more respect for?
31. Explain the difference between hurting and harming someone?

PRAYERS
I need you Lord to teach me to say no. I need you to repair my spiritual and emotional radar and I need you to help me overcome the reasons why the word “no” gets stuck in my through and to mature my over strict conscience. I also ask you to guide me the next time someone asks me to take on another responsibility. If I say yes may it be because I’m answering your call and not because I’m acting out of fear.

BETTER BOUNDARIES

You protect what you care about. If you care about yourself you will protect yourself and boundaries.
Need for Boundaries
Boundaries define your identity
Boundaries protect you from predators and violators
Boundaries speak for you
Boundaries bring order
Boundaries attract respectful relationships
Boundaries promote you
Boundaries protect you from the control of others
Boundaries preserve your purpose and mission
Boundaries protect your finest assets
Boundaries satisfy your need for self confirmation

KEEP DANGER AND HARM OUT OF YOUR LIFE
I AM THE OWNER OF MY LIFE

BOUNDARIES DEFINE
Who you were
What you believe
What people thought of you
What your rights were
Who you could trust
What might hurt you
What you did and didn’t do well
What made people laugh at you or with you
What you needed to do to get attention
What you had to do to get your needs met
What roll you were to play
How lovable you were

Boundaries
Protect you
Preserve you
Present you

1. Clear agreements with people
“Now I want to be very clear about what each of us is expecting”.
“My understanding is that you will be in charge of all aspects of the event. Is that right”?

2. Confident knowledge of self
“No that is not my style”.
“I require less structure that what you are suggesting can we compromise”?

3. Commitment to Goals
“I’m sorry that doesn’t fit the direction I have chosen”.
“I realize that I used to agree with you on this but after giving it a lot of thought I have changed my mind”.
“I have committed myself to using my lunch hour for a private retreat three times a week but I’d love to schedule lunch with you every other Tuesday”.
4. Ownership
An appearance that says you are authentic and know what is appropriate.
Calm “Knowing”
Confidence in your role and contribution

PROTECT YOURSELF

PROMISE YOURSELF
I will take time out before making a decision.
When I am rejected I will feel the discomfort, sort thru my part, if any, accept the current circumstances, learn and move on

ON CALL HELP
A confidante – A person who can let you vent your feelings rational or not and not hold them to you later or tell anyone else
A mentor – A person you admire and trust, encourage, teach and guide you
Personal Advisers – Group of experts who have your best interests in mind and have specific knowledge that can equip you
Short notice pal – A person who can usually meet you for a quick meal or talk to you by phone
Creative re chargers = Self Care and Nurturing
Professionals
Helping team – friends and family who will bail out when you need help
ENFORCEMENT
Speak up – “NO”, “I will not accept your behavior”. “I feel used by your actions”.
Suspend privileges – “I will not continue in this arrangement”. “Let’s step away from this and come back to it when we have adjusted our behavior”.
Withdraw – Leave the scene physically, withdraw emotionally, and stay away from the person, retreat and fresh start
Denounce – “You are no longer welcome here”. “Refuse to speak about it”.

GUARANTEES OF BOUNDARIES
– You will sometimes feel afraid and awkward
– Setting boundaries will improve with practice
– You will experience a new peace and calmness
– Your life will be less cluttered
– A sense of direction will emerge
– You will have room to enjoy those people who enrich and inspire you
– You will attract others with healthy boundaries
– You will spend less time repairing your life and more time enhancing it
– You will have more energy, clarity, energy and hope
– You will enjoy a new sense of control over your life
– You will know to respond to boundary violations
– You will have more understanding and respect for other peoples boundaries
– You will experience increased creativity, excitement and passion

CHALLENGES
Life shifts – things will change
Disagreements – where to set boundaries
Outside opinions – remember you own your life and can make choices for it
Misunderstandings – especially with people bent on controlling you
Fear – change is scary

BE YOUR OWN BEST FRIENDS
1. Declare yourself owner of your life and your own best friend
2. Look at what you believe about yourself and what opinions you hold
3. Sort out what is true and what is not – what is worth keeping – what to toss and what not to toss
4. Get to know your true self
5. Continue to adjust your conclusions about yourself based on what is true
6. Set and adjust your boundaries
7. Live the treasured life

IDENTIFY
– your competence
– your love ability
– your performance at work
– your looks
– your personal disciplines
– your friendliness
– your intelligence
– your strengths
– your weaknesses
– your reputation
– your skills
– your ability to cope with stress
THINKING ERRORS
1. All or nothing thinking, Absolutes – black or white
2. Over generalization – always everyone
3. Mental filter – you chose the one negative detail and cloud all the good stuff
4. Discontinue the positive – you insist your positive qualities don’t count
5. Jumping to conclusions – mind reading – fortune telling
6. Magnifying or minimizing
7. Emotional reasoning – I feel like a failure, I am a failure
8. Using Should statements
9. Labeling self or others
10. Personalization and blame – that’s not yours

POOR DEFENSE MECHANISMS
1. Repression – seem to forget
2. Denial – unconsciously disbelieve trust or reality to avoid pain
3. Retro flex ion – you unconsciously take the blame and turn against yourself “It’s always my faulty”.
4. Hypochondria s is – transform emotion into physical pain
5. Acting out – you act on an unconscious desire in order to avoid being aware of the emotion that goes with it
6. Projection – you reject your own motives and feeling that aren’t ok to you and unconsciously attribute them to others instead
7. Splitting – you shift into compartmentalized thinking about yourself all good/bad
8. Reaction formation – your unconscious impulses that aren’t ok to you are dismissed and replaced with opposite conscious behaviour i.e., have sex feelings instead lead a campaign of celibacy
9. Intellectuality – you make strong emotions ok by thinking about them in the neutral terms rather than experiencing then fully
10. Isolation of affect – you isolate or separate your feelings from your thoughts in your memory
MATURE DEFENSE MECHANISMS
1. Altruism – service to others
2. Humor – your able to express your feelings and deal with uncomfortable thoughts without causing distress to yourself and others
3. Suppression – you consciously decide to postpone dealing with a painful situation until a more appropriate time
4. Anticipation – you plan ahead for future discomfort
5. Sublimation – you deny animalistic impulses that are not socially acceptable

INTERNAL RESISTORS
1. Shame distorts your sense of personal worth as a human being who is both good and bad
2. False Guilt distorts your beliefs about what you are and are not
3. Entitlement distorts the way you think about what you deserve
4. Scapegoating distorts personal responsibility