Modern males are missing one important aspect of what it means to be a man and therefore they are just males. Boundaries is a very important component to have for any human being but I see that modern males are missing this component.
It is driving droves of men to suicide, depression, anxiety and a host of other mental illnesses.
When your voice is drowned out you become misaligned with what nature has in store for you.
Boundaries insulate you from the noise of the world and allows you to hear your own voice.
It is through hearing this voice that allows you to become the man you were truly meant to be.
In this article I am going to help you figure out what boundaries are and how to establish your own boundaries.
You can expect to experience these instances when you practice these concepts:
- People will become angry with you
- You will lose friends
- More energy will be available to you
- Your earning power will increase
- Happiness will become your default mood
I had to experience much heartache in order to learn the importance of boundaries.
On my path to leadership I had to fail countless times to learn the below concepts I have come to distill for you.
When you don’t establish strong boundaries you can expect the following to occur. You:
- Breed entitlement in your subordinates and relationships
- Become a spineless beta bitch
- Transform into resentment personified
- Acquire a poverty mindset
- Lose strength in mind and body
- End up in dangerous relationships with narcissistic people
I have personally made the mistake of being too nice to some of the people I lead in my career and personal life.
What ended up happening is that I started working for only that person rather than the whole group. It became about that one person and it lead to the acute fracturing of not only my leadership but the well-being of the group.
Before you start reading the rest of this article think about where your lack of boundaries stem from:
Did you have narcissistic parents?
Did you always try to please them?
What happened that made you this way?
Ask yourself what’s the worst that can happen if someone else gets mad at you for having boundaries. It is important to understand why, so that this information will be easily implemented.
If you are young and don’t have much experience with these topics do not worry. You will have to go through the consequences of having no boundaries to fully know the value of this text.
I encourage you to LIVE LIFE, make mistakes then come back here to learn from them and apply these concepts.
Embedded in this article are some of the secrets of human behavior. Get to know them, familiarize yourself with them and apply them in your daily life.
I do not condone manipulation in anyway way shape or form. This information is not for that purpose.
This information is to guard against emotional and physical abuse of any kind. Learn this information in order to protect yourself in this day and age. There is a spiritual warfare going on and you need to protect yourself.
If you use any of my information to harm and manipulate others it WILL backfire on you.
What are boundaries?
Let’s start off with the direct definition with which to establish the premise of this article. Words have capacity and we must put them in their rightful place to form cogent arguments.
n.Something that indicates a border or limit.
n.The border or limit so indicated.
n.That which serves to indicate the bounds or limits of anything; hence, a limiting or bounding line; a bound: as, the horizon is the boundary of vision; the northern boundary of the United States.
As you can see above we have our definition of a “boundary,” the border or limit so indicated.
It is important that we establish limits in our relationships so as to keep people from crossing them and encroaching on our divine rights.
When we establish boundaries, we quickly learn how happy we can be in relation to others. We also learn that we have insulated ourselves from toxicity. This allows for us to function as we were designed to.
This is similar to how a cell has a “cell wall” which keeps invaders and toxic particles out.
Boundaries for our psyche operates in the same way. Keep the good things in and the bad things out.
Boundaries are imperative to our success
When we lack boundaries we are forfeiting our divine right to be successful. We become mired in other people’s lives and abandon our own.
Being free from other people’s toxic influence allows for our inner self to flourish. As mentioned above, boundaries insulate us from all that is non-conducive to our development. Proper self care develops and keeps the good stuff in.
If you are an avid club goer the following might resonate with you. Have you ever gotten to a club door and notice the bouncers are HUGE in stature? Then you go inside to find that the club is AMAZING?
That’s what boundaries do. Boundaries keep the amazing in, invite the amazing in and keep the leeches out.
Be like the club with the big bouncers. Erect your boundaries high and wide with rabid pit pulls, barbed wire and flamethrowers keeping the others out.
There is a video of this crazy professor going around teaching the students the importance of boundaries.
She is screaming “No pomegranates!” over and over again to illustrate the power of knowing what you don’t want and asserting it.
Learn to say “No!” to others when you really mean it. The problem with a lot of you men is that you think being “cool, laid back, and down to earth” is some honorable thing. As if just going with the flow and saying yes to everything is a great thing.
When I hear:
“Tim? He’s so laid back, mad cool.”
What I really hear is:
“Yeah Tim? He’s a pushover.”
Learn to speak up and say “No pomegranates!”
How to know if you don’t have boundaries
Let’s try an exercise, stop reading this, close your eyes, get quiet and focus on your breath. I want you to imagine a table with a big, shiny, red apple on it for about 5 minutes. Set your timer.
Now tell me how easy was it for you to get distracted by random thoughts that popped into your head? It was probably relatively easy to get distracted.
This is a problem. If you cannot concentrate for long periods of time you more than likely have weak boundaries. Your inability to focus will keep you from getting your great work done.
You need boundaries in order to develop insulation from negative thought forces.
“Goodmorning, Goodafternoon & Goodnight”
In the next few sections I will be introducing some methods to get your boundaries up. These methods aren’t any hard and fast rules but loose guidelines that will drastically improve your life.
The first one is to greet and be greeted. Never allow anyone to start a conversation whether it’s through text, phone call or in person without first greeting you.
If they do not greet you, do not hold the conversation longer than 2 minutes. End the conversation as soon as possible. They are not worth talking to if they can’t give you respect through proper conversational etiquette.
This is a simple but effective way to establish boundaries because you will instantly feel a shift when a conversation goes like so:
Person: Hey. Can you do me a favor? I need you to help me pick out some furniture for my new apartment.
Person: Oh! Excuse me, pardon my manners. That was rude. Goodmorning!
That shift will set the precedent for future interactions. 9 times out of 10 the person will address and greet you correctly, with respect.
If they don’t? Well that’s a person you should get rid of.
Expecting Punctuality Is An Effective Way Instill Boundaries
When keeping appointments be sure to hold the people you are meeting to high standards. If they are more than 5 minutes late without a call or a text, leave immediately. Even if they’ve traveled 2 hours to meet you.
For those of you who think that is extreme, understand that YOUR time is precious too. Yes they may have traveled over 2 hours to meet with you but you traveled as well. If you didn’t, you more than likely carved out a block of your time only for them to show up late.
That is a missed opportunity you could have had with someone else.
If they are late and call you with a legitimate reason, traffic, transportation being held up or illness, you obviously want to give them a break.
But if someone is late once they will do it again. If you crack the door for them, they WILL kick it wide open. Eliminate this kind of bad behavior from the start.
Audit your life
Take an audit of what is going on in your life and how you’re using your time. You would be surprised at how much time you waste pandering to others, searching for validation on social media, hanging out with losers, etc.
Spend a week writing down EVERYTHING you do with your time, hour by hour then take a cold hard look at it. Look for opportunities to cut the fat.
You must get rid of anything that does not serve you.
This can be in the form of talking to toxic family, friends, coworkers. Anything that is making you feel “ambiguous discontent” HAS to go.
Be ruthless with it.
Ambiguous discontent is a vague feeling of dread. We get this feeling when dealing with people who carry such a low vibration that it’s density pulls our own vibrational frequency down.
I do not care if you have known someone for over 10 years, if they are the source of ambiguous discontent, take a step back. Check to see if they are actually the source then make your decision from there.
How to get rid of codependency
Codependency is a drug. The feeling of leeching off of or being leeched off of triggers a false sense of accomplishment, excitement, joy and a range of other false feelings within us.
These false feelings are due to an alignment with the ego identification with dysfunction.
Some of you are well aware that you are leeching or being leeched off of but you have formed this identity around toxic, codependent relationships.
The easiest way to get rid of these relationships is to GET A FUCKING LIFE.
Find what your purpose is and do it. Be obsessed with your purpose.
Finding your purpose entails doing so many different things that you are too busy to even continue to entertain these emotionally draining relationships.
When you have purpose you no longer seek outside validation through fucked up relationships. You become so involved in your own life that you can’t hear anyone.
Your boundaries automatically go up. Those screwed up dysfunctional relationships fall away like dead leaves from a tree.
If you have already established your purpose but have issues engaging it due to these stubborn codependent issues, you are going to need raw grit to break loose.
You have to purposely and consciously stop being a people pleaser. Stop chasing people. Stop trying to seek validation from them. Their opinions aren’t even valid. Do not let these people continue to bleed into you.
For the people who have their identity wrapped up in helping toxic, codependent people, understand that the more you help these leeches, the more you get pulled under.
The more you do for them the more you end up invested. It’s like a Chinese finger trap. The more energy you invest in trying to get free, the more you get pulled in.
The important thing here is to get free by seeing that you never needed them in the first place. Whether it is from the perspective of you leeching off of them or the other way around you have to break the cycle.
This is why getting rooted in your purpose as a man is important.
Purpose vs Money
I want to expand on a specific type of codependency, one of economic abuse.
When we depend on people for our sustenance we put ourselves at a disadvantage. We belong to those who sponsor us. We can’t put any boundaries up to protect ourselves from those who line our pockets.
This is why I offer you a solution to this specific problem that ails many young men: get the fuck off the payroll!
As man, you should never be depend on another for your sustenance. This is slavery despite the fact that it is your parents, friends and family.
I am not saying that all parents, friends and family are like this but I am sure the majority are. It is human nature for others to want to control others through economics.
Find your purpose in order to set yourself free. If you have a purpose that you can lock onto, it will take you anywhere you want to go. It seems as if money would be the tool to take you places but not if it comes from loved ones.
Your purpose will get you up out of the bed in the morning to gain your independence. Money in the form of allowance will make you lame and keep you in bed because you are fed and have everything you need…except boundaries and freedom.
I have once seen a man get chewed out by another man because he controlled the money in his bank account. It was not a pretty thing. He had to just sit there and take it because he sold his soul. He got rid of his boundaries just for a few bucks.
Get the fuck off the payroll, engage your purpose and don’t look back.
It probably started with your parents
When I realized I had lack of boundaries in the past I started searching for the answer to where I went wrong in books, blogs & a few YouTube channels.
What I found was nothing that made any discernible sense until I started replaying past interactions with my parents in my head.
I started doing this exercise day in and day out because it taught me a lot about myself. What became apparent to me is that in these interactions I was behaving in such a way that was not conducive to my self esteem. This was a mystery to me and I decided to inquire about it some more.
I want you to try this exercise. Sit or lie down comfortably. Now, visualize past incidents you had with your parents, friends, loved ones, whoever. Monitor your feelings during these interactions with detached curiosity. When you are done, write down everything that you felt during these interactions, get a notebook and write everything that comes to mind.
What you will find when you read back those pages is that your parents and loved ones of the past installed a series of emotional buttons. These buttons were left there and are now being activated by people in your personal and professional life. You have to find a way to get rid of them.
This works because when we bring the unconscious to the conscious we have an opportunity to resolve it.
It could be as simple as being aware that these buttons exist.
For example one button that was pressed a lot in my early life was “guilt.” I was prone to guilt because my parents, like many other parents, programmed me to feel guilty whenever I didn’t respect their wishes. I then carried this button into my career and relationships.
This is a prime example of how the past can shape your current relationships.
Though I didn’t know it then as a child I know now that it is not up to me to respect my parents wishes. My responsibility was to come into this world and set out to accomplish what I came to this earth plane to accomplish.
Sometimes all it takes is a little bit of awareness of past ills to undo current mishaps.
The sudden influx of anger towards you
Get use to people not liking you anymore. You will be lonely in this game of building and maintaining boundaries.
People will resent you for not allowing them to take advantage of you a anymore. Your boundaries keep people from controlling, using and abusing you.
The hardest part is that these people will be your friends and family. People who you were once close with will now be distant enemies.
Despite all of the above, they will respect you. They will respect you because you have the gall to do things that they themselves will not and can not do.
They know your story. These people also know what you are capable of but they want to see you suffer with them.
You will serve as a constant reminder that they need to step their game up.
Change your surroundings
Now that you have been outcasted it is time to change your clique. Everyone you use to be close with is either distant enemies or lukewarm acquaintances.
You have your boundaries set up.
Intentionally go out and network with like minded people. These people will become your inner social circle. They will hold you accountable to your goals and aspirations and you will do the same for them.
You are not part of a full-filling ecosystem of positive encouragement
The people you have now formed this little clique with will be edifying and positive. Much different from the people you met in your past.
Never forgive, never apologize
Do not forgive anyone. People have this obsession with “forgiveness” when someone screws others over.
“You have to forgive for your own peace of mind.”
Nah, fuck that. Do not forgive. Stay vigilant. Use that experience as a learning experience so that it doesn’t happen again. THAT will give you peace of mind.
When people fuck you over don’t forgive them, they will violate your boundaries and do it again. They more than likely meant to do it which is alright because it is human nature.
If you so happen to fuck someone over, do not apologize to them unless it is someone in your social circle. You more than likely meant it so what’s the use in apology? Own up to it.
The rules vary between your personal and professional life.
In your personal life or social circle don’t forgive, don’t forget but do apologize when necessary.
In your professional life don’t forgive or forget and never apologize, EVER.
All you have to do is offer the opportunity to correct the mistake moving forward.
Apology implies lack of boundaries because you are foregoing frame(which I will talk about more about later.)
Instead you should say in a crass tone:
“I was wrong, moving forward I will correct this.”
If they ask for an apology DEFINITELY do not apologize. EVER.
Also, NEVER explain yourself. A simple “No” in any situation will suffice. When you commence to explain yourself you are once again “losing frame.”
A leader with strong boundaries has to maintain frame at all times, less is more.
“No” is more than enough.
Maintenance of boundaries
Do NOT get comfortable. The enemy is constantly trying to encroach upon your boundaries. You are always going to have your boundaries tested when you become a man of strength.
A great way to maintain your boundaries is to visualize them crumbling. It might seem odd but this is a method that the stoics use to employ to stimulate the feeling of gratitude within them.
You can use negative visualization to stimulate vigilance.
Avoid people who try to “poison drip” you.
Poison dripping is an insidious way to weaken your resolve and therefore your boundaries. This is a form of negativity that catches you off guard. It is insults, self doubt, negativity all dressed up in compliments.
This kind of psychic attack can seem like well to do friends and family trying to give you constructive criticism but it is not.
You know it is poison dripping when you FEEL drained after a conversation with the perpetrator. You feel icky.
The best way to avoid all of this is to avoid Negative Nancy and Pessimistic Pete.
They will only drag you down.
Set the right frame from the start
Establishing boundaries from the beginning is the most efficient way to start your relationships no matter what the nature is.
You should be establishing all expectations of boundaries from the inception of the relationship.
Do not start behaving in a way that you cannot and will not maintain. It is counter productive. Validation issues leads to lack of boundaries which you will have to address at some point.
Learn to set appropriate agreements immediately and not later on because you will become a victim of escalation of commitment.
Escalation of commitment
Escalation of commitment is a human behavior pattern in which an individual or group facing increasingly negative outcomes from some decision, action, or investment nevertheless continues the same behavior rather than alter course. The actor maintains behaviors that are irrational, but align with previous decisions and actions.Wikipedia
Becoming this guy is embarrassing. You do not want to be one of those guys in denial about the direction his relationship is going. Your best bet is to call it and walk away.
Transgressions of any one of the above concepts, rules and definitions will result in utter, complete misery.
The best, most relatable way for me to illustrate this is by asking you if you ever been in a romantic relationship where you lacked boundaries?
I’m psychic so I am going to tell you how it went for you.
Initially everything was good. You met this girl who blew your mind. The sex was amazing, you spent a lot of time together and you took her shopping.
You even called off of work to spend more time with her because you just could not be without your little “honey bun” for more than an hour. She instantly became your “best friend.”
She started moving her stuff into your place, you stopped going to the gym, you got fat.
One day out of nowhere she wakes up and says she is leaving you. You beg and plead for her to stay with you.
Your once beautiful relationship is falling apart at the seams and so are you.
You double down on all the problematic behavior that got you to that point rather than walking away and fixing yourself.
She becomes incredibly enraged and increasingly disrespectful and you don’t know why.
You are lost. You say:
“Why is this happening to me? What did I do to deserve this.”
After intense arguments for weeks you are ready for things to go back to where it was in the beginning with you two.
You start to try to buy her love back to no avail . By now she has moved everything out including YOUR things and took the dog. She even took the meat out of the freezer.
You’re left in a dark empty depressing apartment which accurately portrays your internal anguish.
I have just described the experience of millions of men around the world.
Well guess what?
It is all YOUR fault. You let this happen. It is the result of not playing within accordance with human behavior. If you do not establish boundaries from the outset and maintain them, things get bad.
I’ll describe one more scenario.
Your work life.
You start a job to work your ass of thinking you will get a big promotion one day.
You, “Worker Bee Bobby,” see “Lazy Larry” get the big promotion you wanted after seeing him show up late everyday, miss deadlines and take extended breaks.
He does nothing all day but surf the web and play on his phone.
Now he is your boss and outsourcing his work to you. You now help him propagate huge bonuses every quarter.
Congratulations! You played yourself.
What you failed to do in the beginning is establish boundaries with your bosses through your behavior. You should have let them know what to expect along the lines of productivity and not go beyond that.
If you establish yourself as a beast of burden then guess what? Your hard work is rewarded with more work. Yay!
I see this kind of thing in my line of work. Person A works his ass off only to be paid less than person B and person B ends up getting promoted.
You know why person B gets paid more than you?
Because in the interview when they were discussing pay, person B was a hard negotiator. It helped that he has skills. He has the same skills as you but he knew how to say “no” and renegotiate.
I’m not saying become Lazy Larry, what I am saying is establish boundaries then play within the rules of human behavior.
Establish your inner social circle within the company you work for and you will not become Worker Bee Bobby.
Your boundaries are what hold you afloat on a body of water and water is like the toxicity all around you in this world.
If your boat isn’t built with strong material or doesn’t have strong boundaries, water will seep in. If you do not focus on fixing the boat you will spend precious energy trying to scoop and dump the water out.
It is this escalation of commitment that causes you to eventually drown in depression.
A person with healthy boundaries and self love is like a bowl filled with water. The water is self love and respect. If that bowl gets damaged with holes in it, self love will leak out.
When that self love leaks out bit by bit, they go searching for it in someone else because they absolutely need love, typically an abusive person that is similar to their parents who probably caused this low self worth.
This is how people get caught in the terrible situation of domestic violence. They are leaking self love so they look for it and they end up getting with someone who keeps breaking their boundaries in exchange for false self love. It’s a toxic cycle.
You can try to fill it all you want BUT it will just leak right back out.
Boundaries are important.
Lack of boundaries is the gateway to getting into a relationship with some who is narcissistic which is a deeper topic I’ll get into in a later article.
Men, we have to get back to being rigid in values, boundaries and purpose. Without these things we are nothing but cartoons and clowns floating around in silly land.
I hope this article finds you well and it provides value.
Rebuild robust boundaries and follow through with your purpose.