New year, new you, or so they say. It is hard to feel renewed in your mind, body, and spirit when you are in recovery. Everything is shifting, moving, and growing. Healthy boundaries are one of the hardest things to learn in recovery. It is necessary to deal with learning them to avoid getting hurt (or hurting others) but learning how to do it takes time. Try these tips on for size when thinking about creating healthy boundaries.
Just Say ‘No’
It may seem quite simple, but it is very hard for people to say ‘no.’ Don’t feel unable to be honest about how you feel if you are not up for something. If you don’t want to go to a support meeting, don’t go. If you are tired but people want to stop by, say no. it is okay to let people know out of self-care how you feel and ask they respect that.
Reactions to Boundaries
There will be a mix of emotions to your boundaries. You are not going to meet people who are always happy you set boundaries. It may butt up against their personal boundaries, or lack thereof, and family may be unused to this way of living with you after dealing with how you were when addicted to drugs and alcohol. As you heal and grow, boundaries become easier to manage. You are only responsible for you. If someone is upset about it, they have to address that issue. It is not time to negotiate so they feel better. Boundaries only when they are consistently applied.
Know Your Needs
If a friend or loved one asks you to do something and you already feel overwhelmed, it is okay to let them know you are not sure. Stating uncertainty means you can circle back later, but don’t feel obligated to do so. It is acceptable to not know if you can (or want) to commit right now. Let them know and move on.
Change Your Mind
It is okay to change your mind and tell someone that something won’t work out this time. Healthy boundaries allow for life to unfold as it may. You don’t have to explain yourself or say you’re not up for it. Those who love and respect boundaries honor those needs. You may realize you needed the self-care after all.
People who respect you and your space respect your boundaries. It is important to stick with personal boundaries. There are many reasons to let them go along the way, but they are all about putting yourself above other people in the self-care department. Taking care of your own boundaries keeps you safe and feeling connected to who you want to be going forward.
A Step in the Right Direction provides quality care for clients seeking support for addiction recovery. We teach people how to live a sober life through programs, therapeutic support, and evidence-based therapies. Our recovery program is staffed by people who understand the power of addiction. For more information about sober living programs for men and women as well as recovery programs, call (877) 377-3702.