You see, I was brought up in an environment where taking care of others was more important than taking care of me…more specifically taking care of a man’s needs was more important than taking care of my own needs.
I was afraid to express what I wanted for fear of coming across as needy, or worse, the man I was with might run off if I dare revealed how I felt, which would then trigger a feeling of not being good enough. And the truth is, some men DID run off after I communicated my desires.
However, today I can stand with more confidence knowing it’s a form of divine intervention when a person runs away. I’m no longer willing to stay silent because I recognize that my needs are related to who I am and ultimately who I want to become.
Throughout my life journey I’ve always been motivated by WHY? Why I need to learn a concept? Why did certain things happen? Including, WHY having healthy boundaries was important.
Here’s what I found…
“Setting clear boundaries is the key to ensuring relationships are mutually respectful, supportive and caring. Boundaries are a measure of self-esteem. They set the limits for acceptable behavior from those around you, determining whether they feel able to put you down, make fun, or take advantage of your good nature.”
– Jane Collingwood
That’s when I realized it was time to not only set boundaries but to actually stick by them. So dating became a way for me to gain confidence in expressing what I needed in manner that was clear and respectful because I knew with each word I uttered, my self-esteem was being nurtured.
Here was my approach with every man I dated. I used my Confidence Formula, which I’ve written about in my soon to come ebook, Desirable And Deserving.
CONFIDENCE = PREPARATION + PRACTICE + COURAGE
I clearly defined the values that were important for me to have within the relationship I longed for.
I wrote down how I would express these values in a manner that was respectful and authentic.
I then mustered the courage to express what I wanted, and I needed to stick by my values especially when they were tested.
Now this seems simple enough but I noticed when I began to really like a guy, it was harder to stick to my boundaries. I ended up tolerating inappropriate behaviors that were against my true core values.
I’m not suggesting that you never compromise. Compromising is great in small doses, often necessary to smooth over a few rough edges of an otherwise smoothly functioning relationship. For example, turning down the TV while the other person talks on the phone or watching a movie that your partner likes that is of less interest to you is no big deal.
It’s when you start compromising essential core needs, wants and desires of who you are that you become destabilized and cracks in the foundation of a relationship start to show. These feelings of neglect can breed resentment.
So, take the time to get clear with your values, define them and practice how to verbalize them. Trust that you have a right to have specific desires and stop doubting what is necessary for you to feel appreciated and loved.
Be all the woman you were meant to be!