Debunking the Boundary Myth: Understanding the Misconception That Boundaries Are Selfish (Myth 1)

Debunking the Boundary Myth: Understanding the Misconception That Boundaries Are Selfish (Myth 1) debunking the boundary myth: understanding the misconception that boundaries are selfish (myth 1)

When it comes to setting boundaries, you will have knots in your stomach, especially since it’s unfamiliar territory. It’s a territory that you really don’t want to be in; you’d even prefer the safe territory of letting people take advantage of you or do as they wish because, at least, you will avoid answering their hard questions or even avoid being called selfish.

You might not really want to attend that family meeting where people brag about how amazing their lives are, or you might not want to go to that friend’s birthday because you have your plans or simply because you’re broke, but they can’t accept any of it. You will be called selfish for listening to your true voice, for once, and being true to yourself, or for simply not following along with the crowd and prioritizing the you who’s used to being a doormat. So, you will question if actually having boundaries is being selfish or if setting and upholding boundaries in life makes you a very selfish person. That’s one of the myths we’re going to demystify today.

What does it mean to be selfish?

It means being self-centered or being interested in your concerns and not those of others. When you’re self-centered, you will deeply disregard the needs of others for your own good. But that’s not what boundaries are all about. Boundaries may be perceived as selfish by those who are not willing to take responsibility for their needs in life. When you set boundaries, also known as taking care of your well-being, you are creating an environment where you and others can coexist peacefully, or where you are taking full responsibility for your life. You are respecting yourself and aligning with what’s true to you on the deepest level. It’s like giving yourself what you’ve been giving to others.

Without Healthy Boundaries You’re Already Selfish

When you lack healthy boundaries and disregard your well-being for the sake of others, you are, in fact, being selfish in two ways. Firstly, you’re being selfish to yourself or to the authentic you. You know you’re hurting yourself by going to hang out with those friends who constantly ridicule you or by constantly following along with someone’s plans that you deeply dislike. You are denying yourself care and well-being, or you’re denying your authentic self what you truly want or desire. You are simply being selfish to the you who has a voice or concerns about your lack of boundaries. You’re choosing burnout, resentment, and all those negative emotions that come with not being true to yourself.

Zero Boundaries is the True Selfish

Secondly, you’re also selfish to others, contrarily. You might think that by giving your all to others, you’re being selfless; however, no, you’re not. You’re being even more selfish. When you spoon-feed those close to you by giving them what they want, you’re denying them the ability to feel responsible in their lives.

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It’s like you’re telling them, “hey, you don’t need to feel responsible for your emotions or your poor spending habits; relax, I will take the responsibility on your behalf.”

You are simply stifling their growth, which is the highest kind of selfishness. When you set boundaries, the other person will probably look for another place to leech on as they seek to avoid taking responsibility for their actions, but when they run out of options, they will simply feel the pain and start working on their boundaries as well.

Setting Boundaries = Empowerment

So, when you set boundaries, you’re empowering others to feel responsible and to take full ownership of their lives, which is the most compassionate thing you can do. You’re showing other people that we don’t really need to be psychologically dependent on one another as much, and we all have the capacity to take care of ourselves while maintaining healthy and meaningful connections. They may not respond positively at first, but it’s for the greater good. When you are true to yourself, you become the beacon of light for those around you. People learn from seeing, and when they see how you’re glowing or flourishing, they will simply start asking you questions on how you did it. That’s a great way to be selfish, right?

Conclusion

Having healthy boundaries or taking care of yourself doesn’t mean that you’re selfish; it simply means you’re choosing the path of listening to your true voice and following along with it. It means you are empowering yourself to stand up for you and showing others that they can also stand up for themselves. This is how you will build meaningful relationships where people don’t blame each other for their shortcomings but, in fact, rise up and take full responsibility for the things happening in their lives.

You will undoubtedly be called selfish for setting boundaries or for prioritizing your mental health in front of your friends or family’s extrinsic happiness. However, on a different angle, you are sowing seeds of independence and empowerment, which some of the people close to you will pick up, water, and mold in their own lives. Your actions may look selfish, but in your heart, you know they are compassionate and are protecting others from being stuck.

For those of you eager to explore the intricate world of boundaries, I have an exciting announcement: our Boundaries course has officially launched! In this course, we will dive deeper into the art of setting and maintaining healthy boundaries in real time. You can expect in-depth insights, practical strategies, and a comprehensive understanding of how to navigate the intricacies of boundaries. Click on the link, and let’s embark on this journey to empower you with the tools to foster healthier, more fulfilling relationships and a better quality of life.

Note from the Author

If you’re ready and you’d like my help with healing, finding peace in life and breaking free from these toxic patterns, then you can book a FREE BREAKTHROUGH CALL with me HERE. Happy healing 💙💙. Feel free to share and comment! Use this information with caution, it comes from my own thoughts & bias, experiences and research😊.

References

  1. Cloud, Henry; Townsend, John. Boundaries Updated and Expanded Edition: When to Say Yes, How to Say No To Take Control of Your Life (p. 106- 108 ). Zondervan. Kindle Edition.
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Edwin Bii
Edwin Bii

I'm Edwin Bii, a trained advanced conversational hypnotherapist (ACH) and Mind Shifting Coach from Kenya offering mental health support, and life coaching to help you crush your goalsand overcome your problems. Together, we'll navigate challenges, build self-awareness, and create a happier, healthier you. Let's unlock your potential.

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