I used to think that part of being a Christian was just “putting up” w/people and all that they gave me.
I had the attitude “Well, this is just what this is what this particular person does and I can’t change them”…
This statement is true to a certain extent…I can’t Change a person but I don’t have to Accept any behavior that goes against what I believe and want for my life!
I’m learning that boundaries aren’t always easy to establish w/people but they are always necessary~I teach people how to treat me.
With that being said, whatever I accept from people will continue. If I let people be late, waste my time, invade my space, talk down to me~they will continue.
But if I correct people and let them know what I expect and what I won’t allow to continue, one of two things will happen: they will either adjust accordingly or they will choose to no longer be in relationship w/me on certain level. Either way, boundaries will establish guidelines, promote growth and foster respect.
Here are some practical ways to help you establish boundaries:
1. Pray~ask God to help you set boundaries for certain people and situations
2. Journal~write down your expectations in full detail. Also what makes you upset and why. Write out your expectations and what you will no longer tolerate
3. Practice~have the conversation w/yourself in the mirror ahead of time
4. Speak the Word~find scriptures on confidence and boldness, also get scripture based books to enlighten you
5. Follow-Through~do what you say no matter how hard or uncomfortable it is
6. Speak the Truth in Love~be honest about how you feel. Tell the person(s) the truth about what they did, how it made you feel and what you will/won’t accept in your life in a firm, loving, respectful manner
Two great books to read are Lysa TerKeurst’s “More Than Just a Good Bible Study Girl” and Paul Coughlin and Jennifer Degler, PhD’s “No More Christian Nice Girl”