Setting boundaries used to be very difficult for me. I hated the thought of someone being angry at me. It was my biggest fear in life to lose all of my friends and be alone in the world, so I avoided anything that might potentially get me ejected from any tribe I was in.
It was interesting to find that was exactly what happened, in part because I never set boundaries. I did actually lose a ton of people I considered friends. Turns out I was right. Being told “no” did make people angry at me.
In exchange, I discovered so much more about myself. That I actually did not enjoy most of the things I was doing to please other people. And there were plenty of things that I LOVED doing that some people I knew would absolutely hate.
When you do not know and maintain your personal boundaries, you really aren’t being true to yourself. You are wearing different masks to be whatever anybody and everybody wants you to be. It is truly EXHAUSTING. Not to mention you never really feel comfortable anywhere, even alone.
Having my greatest fear come true and realizing that I was still breathing and walking among the living was a blessing. It gave me super powers, really. If you survive and learn to function in the face of your fear, you become invincible.
Later on, as I grew my business, branding became much easier. Being authentic in both my personal and business life was a gift. Getting turned down for a role (or a relationship) is not as painful. What is for me is for me. I’m not out to get EVERY gig. I want to get the gigs that I will be BRILLIANT in. I want to get the roles that line up with my talent, my vibe, my culture, my smile, my freckles, and my enthusiasm. Plus, I don’t have to keep up with so many masks because I am ALWAYS authentically me.
Start being brave enough to name and maintain your personal boundaries. There may be some pushback at first, but trust me. It’s a sign that boundaries needed to be there in the first place!