in families. in work. in relationships.
you know when you're dealing with someone who wants some of what you've got. your talent, your time, your energy, your smarts, your help, your generosity, your teamwork, your sexy, your goodness, your sweetness, your awesome.
and most of us want, more than anything, to be liked. no matter how rebellious we are, we desperately want the approval of our families, our friends, peers, and colleagues. and so what most of us do, much of the time, is acquiesce. someone wants something, we try to give it to them.
the extra cleaning up after someone. the work demands that we know are bullshit. the caring more about the other person's well-being than your own. the making excuses for bad behavior. any unpaid professional work guised as "favors." the extra time spent on someone or something when we know we should be tending to ourselves. the way we edit our lives to present to friends and family. any way that we sell ourselves short.
any shifting of behavior or thoughts that deep down in you, you know grows from wanting approval or at least avoiding disapproval.
weirdly, the flip side of the coin is competition: instead of acquiescing for approval, we try to win at something for approval. we try to look better at something. we try to build castles of approval to keep ourselves safe.
both steal our energy. in both cases we bleed out something that belongs to us.
I had a beautiful conversation tonight with a business partner/childhood friend, and I was talking about the tear that I've been on for at least a year and a half. and she noted how one of my projects is called grounding arts...and how much of my attention is currently on grounding. she pointed out that often the message we're laying out for others is the message we most need for ourselves. and the reason I'm talking about grounding is that healthy boundaries wrap all the way back around to the root chakra..back to the core of power and identity and being good with oneself.
because when you're really good with yourself, none of that noise can touch you. seriously.
fuck that noise.
absurd demands on your time and energy present themselves as such. pointless competition becomes obvious.
this is, of course, not the same as being generous and being there for someone. giving well actually comes from the same place as saying no well. it comes from a place of truly owning your shit. and of owning your value.
it becomes much easier to say no when you know your own value. and it becomes much easier to not give a shit about competition when you don't feel any charge around it, whatever the other person is doing.
when you know your value, the concept of insecurity becomes moot. I made it a point the other day to ground in and neutralize. this stuff can all be clear as day, and it still takes practice. we're human, and flawed, and we get wrapped up in the stupidities of life.
one of the most powerful lessons I've learned has been to say no to anything and everything that does not serve me, no matter how badly someone else would like me to do differently.
my teacher said, "if you're not in your power, it's a no." and the truth is it might piss some people off. it might disappoint some people. they may pout, stomp their feet, argue, compete, or fall away. all of that is ok. when you stand on your own to feet in your very own power, none of that shit matters.
and when none of that shit matters to you, only magic remains.
this is what happens when you create boundaries and start saying no.