View this post on Instagram
I’ve always struggled with setting boundaries.
Saying no doesn’t come naturally to me. If I have to say it, I need to count to 10, think twice about it, and assess all the possible scenarios that could ensue. I don’t like being rude. I’m thoughtful and kind and being a yes person kind of makes me feel better.
It’s been a few years though that my yes has started turning against me. I’ve experienced the ugly consequences that come from always putting other people first.
Sadly, I’ve learned the hard way that I can’t put myself last all the time—especially when dealing with certain people. Regardless of the nature of our relationship, I need to know that my yes doesn’t backfire on me.
Furthermore, I need to ensure that by saying yes I’m not putting my own emotional and physical well-being at stake. If my happiness might be compromised, then my no is certainly preferable.
If you’re anything like me, you should know by now that saying no doesn’t make you selfish, unkind, or unthoughtful. It simply makes you vigilant and self-aware.
I personally think there are eight types of people who don’t always deserve our yes—and we need to preserve better boundaries as soon as possible:
1. The manipulators. Noticing the manipulators in your life can be tricky—and sometimes impossible. They’re so good at playing mind games that it’s hard to figure out when they’re being real and when they’re doing something to get what they want. Setting limits with manipulators puts them in their place.
2. The emotional vomiters. These are the people who, regardless of how you feel or what you’re doing, will compulsively “vomit” their emotions all over you without taking into consideration your own mental state. They unload a massive amount of emotions and might even find it hard to stop. Dealing with people who tend to explode emotionally always leaves us feeling upset and drained. This is why it’s best to define our limits with them.
3. The opportunists. You will find them next to you and with you only when they can take advantage of a situation. They don’t take into account our own feelings and are extremely unpredictable; all they care about is improving things for themselves. Since they tend to be self-centered, it’s important for them to know their limits.
4. The benefiters. They are the ones who take advantage of you. You are useful to them—but they’re rarely useful to you. It might be something you have or something that you are. Whatever it is, it apparently benefits them to a great extent. We must stop these people before they deplete us of our resources.
5. The energy vampires. Bad vibes don’t usually bother me and I know well how to shield myself against them. However, when it comes to energy vampires, I’ve learned to be careful. They’re the ones who, despite all our goodness, easily prey on it. Since they’re usually involved in so much drama, they easily drain our emotional energy. We might not be able to cut them off entirely from our life, but we need to set boundaries by limiting contact with them.
6. The no-nos. They are, I think, the most difficult to deal with. They are the ones with whom you have already tried setting boundaries and might have even voiced your concerns but they still don’t get it. Somehow they always seem to cross the limits you have drawn. It appears as if they don’t acknowledge your limits or don’t respect them. Unfortunately, the only way is to be firmer with them or remove them completely from your life.
7. The guilt trippers. They use emotional and mental manipulation to change how you think or feel. Their sole intention is to make you feel guilty or bad about something you might or might not have done. We always end up excessively explaining to them how we’re feeling. They make us feel bad and ignore our efforts to explain ourselves. You might not be able to change their detrimental behavior, but you can definitely keep it to a minimum by drawing boundaries.
8. The victims. They usually don’t take responsibility for their own actions. They thrive on blaming others and making themselves look helpless so we can step in and take charge. Since they always seem to live in despair and injustice, it might be hard to deal with these people. The best thing we can do is to clarify our role and the behavior we expect from them so they don’t affect our stress level.
Setting boundaries with people is essential for happy and healthy relationships. Don’t hesitate to set limits where it’s needed. Our no will essentially tell people what is acceptable and what isn’t. Without proper boundaries, we can never feel safe or worthy—please remember that.