Definition: A line or plane indicating the farthest limit or extent of something; border; perimeter; the greatest possible degree of something; the marked limit of the playing area; parameters; threshold or dividing line demarcating one thing from another.
Boundaries are the limits and guidelines that we set for ourselves. Their development involves multiple psychosocial factors involving physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual aspects of self. They mark the edges of our comfort zone and define us as individuals, but they are also the places where we come together and meet each other. Without boundaries we would not be able to tell where one thing starts and another ends.
When psychological boundaries are too soft, we may give in too easily in situations or find ourselves taken advantage of. We may continually give in to something that intrinsically feels wrong for us – we may lack the self-esteem to say no. When psychological boundaries are too rigid, on the other hand, we may be cool and “walled-off”, unapproachable, and not open to the influence of the world around us. We may also be unable to accept another’s well-meaning support, because we may lack the self-assuredness to tolerate differences. The happy medium is having selective and flexible boundaries, that allows both protection and interaction.
Trust is the psychological membrane that holds the boundaries together. When trust is misused, through abuse, dominance, disrespect, neglect, or when one is taken advantage of by another, the container of mutuality and safety where relationships grow is breached and requires repair.
When this card is picked it may be time to examine your boundaries. Take a moment to reflect on your boundaries. Are they ever infringed upon? Perhaps you are saying yes, despite feeling no. Is it time to firm up your boundaries and to start exercising your right to say “no”, or “maybe”? Are you infringing on someone else’s boundaries?
© 2011 Leslie Helen Bambic Ciechanowski
Every week I shuffle and draw a card to write about and represent the week ahead. My only rule is that if I draw one that I have already written about, I draw another. In this way I am using the spirit of the cards themselves.
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