Things often come in threes. Or maybe I’m just slow on the uptake. Or maybe some of these are lifetime lessons and we learn and go deeper and learn and go deeper.
I think it’s that last one.
And, so I revisit the issue of boundaries. Which is not unrelated to my previous post about Abraham Maslow.
And which is very much related to intention. And voice. To trusting that you know what you need and trusting your ability to figure out how to get that need met. It starts with trusting that inner voice. The loving inner voice. The I got your back voice. The it’s ok sweetheart voice. The it’s ok to say no voice.
So I texted my daughter—my Tel Aviv morning, her NY night—and asked if she could draw me “NO”? And the above text—a period—was her response. Which, was the best response. No explanation, no need for all those slippery, self-effacing, apologetic explainations.
No, the answer is no. Full stop. Why? You ask why? Because. As Susan Gregg writes, No is a complete sentence and so often we forget that. When we don’t want to do something we can simply smile and say no. We don’t have to explain ourselves, we can just say no.
But, recalling Maslow, if we are motivated by the need for safety, we often silence the no voiceand convince ourselves that suppressing our needs is in our best interests. But this not in our best interests! This is self-harm.
It’s up to us to know what and who are the Yes’s and No’s. Sit down with pen and paper and make a list. Or make a mental list. Keep a journal, talk to a friend or therapist, whatever works. Dig deep and ask questions. As a good friend reminds me, we are 100% responsible for our lives. Which is freeing. We can take off the victim shackles and make our lists.