King of your Castle
Countries have walls and boundaries.
Castles have walls and boundaries.
Farms have fences and boundaries.
Homes may or may not have fences, always boundaries.
Businesses, homes and cars have alarm systems.
Children and the vulnerable depend on other’s walls and boundaries to protect them.
It makes sense that we need to establish our own personal boundaries; indeed, walls if necessary.
It’s normal to have walls/fences and boundaries to protect those things that are of value to you; obviously, barriers are essential to keep out the bad and to protect the good within. Likewise, they are built to protect from potential enemies who seek to harm you. When someone breaks into your home, their intention is obviously never good.
On the one hand, a wall is important for protection (if you are a V.I.P. because you can be a potential target), and is necessary because great wealth leads to vulnerability. On the other hand, a wall is isolating and has the potential to create bigger problems within the walls and ultimately make prisoners of those behind it.
Although it’s true that a boundary is different to a wall, they are both barriers and both require permission for a person to enter. However, within a boundary, there’s more freedom and interaction with others.
Should a boundary be crossed or violated, there is room for negotiations (unlike solid walls). Boundaries don’t necessarily give you privacy, but they do give room for movement, freedom, protection; and indeed, conflict.
For example, I moved into a new home and my boundary was shared with my neighbour. We were in the process of establishing our new gardens when we struck up a neighbourly conversation and she casually told me she was planning to put down pavers to divide our properties, whilst at the same time, giving us both a pathway to the garden hose. She said she already had the pavers and asked me to agree for her to place them between our boundary lines. I agreed.
The next morning, I walked out to collect my mail and noticed the pavers were fully on my side of the boundary line. I felt angry at her taking advantage of the boundary line and waited until I had cooled down before knocking on her door to discuss it. Then the dispute began about the boundary line. Determined to not let this escalate, I contacted the correct authority to confirm the boundary lines, because she was not open to negotiations.
Because the boundary had already been established, she had no choice but to move them. Needless to say, the frozen relationship, although civil, has been challenged and tainted, along with a healthy respect for my boundary lines.
Boundaries and walls are essential for our protection; we have them in place to say to others, “Thus far, and no more.” Without boundaries, anyone has the right to come and go, take what they want and abuse without any accountability.
AND YET, many of us (from abusive childhoods) have never learned to build boundaries around our personal lives to stop others entering and taking what is ours. We have not learned to put proper boundaries in place, to say, “Thus far, and no more.”
We have allowed others to manipulate, control, hurt, abuse, and steal, without any accountability.
Therefore, we need to start building walls and boundaries to protect what is of value to us.
We do that, by:
- Identifying why we need a boundary.
- Who we let in, or keep out. (Keep the bad out and protect the good).
- Why we need to keep certain people outside the boundary.
- Who and why we let others in. Write out a checklist.
- We need to communicate to others where the boundary is.
- Learn that “NO” is a powerful boundary.
- Be strong when resistance to boundaries comes. (They will come).
- Constant maintenance of those boundaries.
- Be open to boundaries that can be negotiated
- Remain solid with the foundations of the boundaries. What you will and will not allow.
Finally, our boundaries tell the world, and those around us, who we are; they give us our identity; therefore, it’s important that the boundaries are clear and enforced and maintained on a regular basis, very much like my neighbour and our boundary lines. Your boundaries will be tested and others will try to stretch them.
The sense of safety, security and self-worth are worth the time to invest in creating clear and solid boundaries.
Begin today by using the most basic, yet powerful tool; the word NO! It says, thus far and no more. Let your yes be yes and your no be no. Matthew 5:7
Even God, the Creator of everything, had solid boundaries set in place to keep us safe and have healthy fulfilling lives…
… “For I have placed the sand as a boundary for the sea, An eternal decree, so it cannot cross over it. Though the waves toss, yet they cannot prevail; Though they roar, yet they cannot cross over it.” Jer. 5:22
…”He made from one man every nation of mankind to live on all the face of the earth, having determined their appointed times and the boundaries of their habitation.” Acts 17:26
“Each one should carry his own load. Everyone should carry his or her own responsibilities.” Gal 6:5
BE the King/Queen of your own Castle!