A long time ago, something really pragmatic occurred to me. It might be too pragmatic to be true, but I have found it useful, so I'm going to share it.
You see, I'm one of those people who has a difficult time with boundaries, because I was divinely programmed to see the best in people AND to doggedly hold on to my perspective despite attempts reality made to yank it from my silly grip.
It took me years to outsmart these mechanisms in myself. I had to develop new "software" to put in my brain, actually. Sometimes people helped me develop it, but often, the new software just arrived, and I tried it and liked it.
This is one such piece of software. My imagination calls it the valence-shell boundary program. I don't have to run it very often, but sometimes I still do. I used to run it A LOT.
You can learn about it here and apply it right away!!!
What is a valence shell?
Simply put, a valence shell is an energetic field around the proton of an atom--the central particle. Think of it like the proton is the sun and the electrons are planets revolving around it, only in the case of an atom's field, each orbit contains a set number of planets, no more, no less. This field organizes electrons--its relative particles, which define its energetic properties--into shells. The inner shell can only contain so many electrons. Each more distant shell contains a set number as well.
You can see an example of valence shells in the main image of this blog. I have superimposed it over people and added color, but it is based on an atomic shell if you see it. This is Bismuth--without it, the world would not be the world! In just the same way, the world would not be the world without your, unique energy!
Why should I care about this Science stuff Emily?!
Because your life is a lot like that atomic field. Your center is your proton. It's all your energy, time, thoughts, life force, bundled in your tummy. This is YOU!
Your center is like the proton.
The people you surround yourself with are part of your energetic reality. They can either suck energy and not give much back, give a lot and not demand anything and let you suck from them if you are so inclined, and on and on.
Your friends, family and associates in any way are like the electrons.
Remember what I said? The valence shells can only hold so many electrons! So do you start to see what I am saying? When you remove someone from your life because they are causing a lot of pain and sucking your energy out of you and you just find them to be a drain, you have a space in your shell, depending on how close to you that person is.
This applies very well to breakups, too, because these people are in the first shell. Usually a person can only handle one. Some people say they can handle more than one person in that shell. I tried to do this too. I lied to myself a while and messed up my atomic field while I was at it only to find that returning to the one-limit rule helped that shell function well again. If you think I'm full of it, don't take my word for it, try it and see!
So when you mind your shells--keep the people who deserve to be close to you--the people who nourish your soul, challenge your intelligence, have faith in your abilities, boost your self esteem--you will feel energized!
When people at work act below your standard, move them out. You can still work with them, but keep them at a distance. The same applies to family members. If the person is abusive, you can remove them.
What's MAGICAL about all this is that, no matter how much a person hurts you, if you move them more distant, even don't see them again, you eventually don't feel the pain so much, and actually, maybe you can love them again, or at least forgive them. That is NOT to say they come back into a closer shell. For it is the distal proximity that allows you the perspective to accept and love them as they are. (I mean, would you climb in a cage with a tiger? I think you get the point.)
When a friend you had for a long time no longer understands you and how you have grown, move them to a more distant shell.
Easier said than done--but it must be done. We know this. We all know it. It hurts. But this program, I hope, will help help you to make boundary management a conscious process.
It's about FEELINGS. Do you feel drained by someone? Look into this. Make space for yourself to ask critical questions about the relationship and what about it is a suck.
You can even tell the person what they are doing that bothers you and, if they change, or you change, they can stay where they are.
In the end, the goal is to get most if not all of the people in your life in a shell that feels most functional.
You can then feel a sense of boundaries, and with this the ability to love someone.
For final example: If uncle so-and-so is rude to you, don't spend time with him and love him more, from a distance, for being himself. If you choose to keep going around him, it is you who are asking for this feeling.
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