Inner Boundaries are the first boundaries women leaders need to set before establishing boundaries with their spouse, family, friends, co-workers or anyone else for that matter.  A healthy inner boundary is a self-imposed rule or structure that allows you to keep humming along in life, feeling grounded, and functioning healthily and happily within your own mind and heart.
Setting a boundary around what you’re willing to tolerate from yourself requires a deep dive into looking at your real life results and outcomes. It means getting honest with yourself about the life you’ve created up until now.
Inner Boundaries for Women Leaders
If you don’t like what’s been happening, then you need to course correct inside. I suffer when I reject a part of myself, when I don’t forgive myself.  The natural result is that I don’t have the empathy or compassion to forgive anyone else.
Why would I not forgive myself?  On a subconscious level, I don’t feel worthy of love or kindness. The reason I don’t feel worthy is somewhere along the way I began to believe that I’m flawed and need to hide my true self.

Do You Feel Good Enough?

 

As a human being, you are complex.  You’ve accumulated a storehouse of memories, images, and beliefs about who you are, your identity.  Typically, you’ve decided by the age of 8 what you are capable of, if you you’re lovable, and if you’re worthy of good things.

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You Mind Interprets Reality

 

If you’ve experienced a significant loss of someone dear to you…. if you went through some sort of trauma (neglect, abuse), you made it mean something.  You might have interpreted a death as “I’m going to love as many people as possible so I don’t feel alone.” Or you may have interpreted a loss as, “It’s not safe to love, and so I’m going to guard my heart.”
Based on your unique set of life experiences, you’ll interpret your life’s events accordingly. Most of us feel unlovable and incapable, regardless of outer success attained. It’s very normal to feel not enough.  So for the sake of this writing, let’s assume you fall into the “not feeling good enough” camp with most of us.

You Take Care Of What You Value

 

If we buy a brand new red, convertible Mustang that we’ve saved for years to buy with cash, we will probably wash it weekly if not more, keep the oil changed, vacuum it weekly, wash the inside windows, etc. If we have an old beat up car, we’ll tend to neglect its upkeep. Similarly, when we don’t feel good enough or see ourselves as valuable and worthy, we don’t take as good of care of ourselves.
Physically, we won’t feed or nourish our bodies well. We’ll drink too many sugary drinks, coffee after noon, or not enough good water.  We won’t work out or stretch our bodies.
Emotionally, we may have a very strong inner Judge who harshly criticizes us for not being perfect. This saboteur may criticize our body type, height, weight,  how tall we are, how wrinkly, not gracefully aging, being the imperfect human we are.
Spiritually we may feel disconnected from God or Source, like we don’t belong here.  We don’t trust in the process of life.
When we feel these ways, we don’t respect ourselves. We beat ourselves up for our past and withhold forgiveness for our past mistakes.  We become our own worst enemy.

Suggested Inner Boundary Work 

 

Inner Boundaries for Women Leaders

1. 3 Past Events 

Make a list of the top three events that you haven’t been able to forgive yourself for.  A hint here is to see if you’re still ashamed of something you’ve done and feel a lot of regret about.  Shame will lead you to your own unforgiveness issues.

2. Your Best Friend

Imagine your best friend, and he or she has done the exact same things you have done and feel so bad about.  Are you able to find compassion and empathy for them doing the exact same things? I bet you are! Isn’t that interesting? Hmmmm…..

3. You’re A Giver

You know how you help a lot of people? You love them and care about their happiness.  Imagine that love exuding from your heart for people who are hurting.  Close your eyes and see that love emanating from your heart to others. Now direct that beam of love right back to you.

4. Become A Receiver 

Receive the loving light–see it permeating the 70 trillion cells of your body. The cells are soaking up the love because they’ve been starved of such affection. Like a sponge soaking up water, they’ve been dehyrated and need the nourishment of your self-love.

5. Disentangle Your Energy

Does the shame you feel for your past choices involve others? Have you harmed them in your eyes? If so, imagine your energy is one cord, and their energy is another cord. And right now both cords are all knotted and intertwined. Begin to unravel the energetic entanglement in your mind’s eyes. 

6. Where Your Responsibility Lies

You are not responsible for them though you may have hurt them, and they may have hurt you.  They aren’t to blame for where you are either.  You are each on you own path, and that path has intersected in time. Untangle the path with all love in your heart for yourself and for them. 

7. Your Inner Child 

See your inner child.  How was he or she hurt when you were little? What were your parents not able to give him or her? Did you feel unseen, unheard and unnoticed, unloved?  If so, can you stay with yourself and send love to this little child. You deserve this.

8. Parent Yourself

You can’t change the past, but you can begin to parent your inner child.  As the adult, you can give them what you never got as a child.  Your adult self can help you truly feel safe in life, whereas your hurt wounded self will merely try to self-protect you out of fear and keep you stuck in the status quo.

Allow Yourself To Be Human

 

Inner Boundary work has a lot to do with forgiving yourself.  The human experience is not easy. It’s not meant to be.  No matter how spiritually enlightened you are, you are still having a human experience.  Chances are you’ve not given yourself much latitude to make mistakes and be human, have you?
Personally I’ve identified as a wounded healer for a long time now. Some people have an aura of Joy around them. Think Donna Eden.  Even my own mom has such a light-hearted energy about her.
And others, like myself, have a more sorrowful feel about our energy. Don’t despair because you can change this.  My sorrow originated when I lost my Aunt Elaine when I was 6 years old. I watched her parents (my grandparents and daytime caregivers) suffer over the loss of their only daughter who died suddenly at 16 years old.
Ten Ways to Reach Inner Peace

Impact Of Not Having Inner Boundaries

 

When you don’t know who you are and what you value, when your inner boundaries are blurred between yourself and others, you lack direction and invite confusion into your life.
1. Others decide what you should do with your life. Then you resent them when things don’t turn out the way you like.  This is a perfect recipe for anxiety.   You feel anxious because you feel unmoored, ungrounded.
2. You easily project your own insecurity onto others. You believe others think the same way you do, and it’s so easy to blame them for your own feelings.
3. You don’t forgive others, because you haven’t been able to forgive yourself. When you have little to no self-compassion or self-empathy, you can’t give this gift to others. Make sense? How can you give away something that you don’t have?
4. Withholding forgiveness clogs your prosperity.  The energy of grudges and resentments repels abundance and inhibits your life, health and prosperity. It dampens your impact as a leader too because though you may not understand why, people won’t want to follow you to the extent you carry around negative energy.

Forgiveness Is For You

Do you need to forgive anyone? Dr. Alex Loyd, author of The Healing Code, says he’s never seen a serious health problem where there was not an unforgiveness issue.  Most people are not aware they have an unforgiveness problem. They consciously believe they’ve resolved it.  Here’s the trap. Below is a dialog of what people will often say to explain why they don’t think they’re holding a grudge.

Indifference Is Not Forgiveness

“I don’t see them anymore. I don’t think about them. I don’t actively seek revenge. In fact, I’d probably be nice to them if I saw them on the street. Truth be told, I just don’t care about them. I don’t wish them harm or good; I’m indifferent.”
Do you call this Forgiveness?  It’s really not. It’s comparmentalizing feelings.  Putting up walls around the heart to prevent further hurt is what this is. The way you can tell if you have unforgiveness is if you’re angry, irritated or don’t want to be around a certain person.  

Or if this is a romantic partner, you don’t fully trust them or invite intimacy. You may SAY you want to be intimate, but if you look at reality, you’re not deeply connecting with them. Our actions tell us what what we subconsciously want. This is a key point: our heart or subconscious always wins over conscious intentions.

Don’t You Deserve To Forgive?

Forgiveness is not about letting someone off the hook. It’s really for YOU because if not addressed, it can kill you. It can destroy your heart by keeping your heart shut off to love.
I know because I’ve unconsciously withheld resentment for a long time, my body keeping tabs of all those who have ever mistreated me.  So energetically, I had written them off.  Not anymore. I am worth more than that. I deserve to forgive myself and them so I can move on. Don’t you deserve this too?

Are You Ready To Creat Inner Boundaries?

Women leaders are often a proud, self-protected bunch because we are very image conscious.  We want others to think well of us.  We try to get approval from other people, whom we can’t control.   What we DO control is our own opinion of ourselves, but it’s not been high on our priority list.
After accomplishing 80% of our to-do list and feeling not enough, we don’t have the energy to slow down and do the inner child/inner boundary work to free up space within our heart. 
Having solid inner boundaries means we effectively self-parent. We disentangle our energy and narratives from others’ so that what remains is the true us.  We forgive ourselves and others and thereby free ourselves from the burden of grudges, resentments, and victim and martyr thinking.  Now we are light and clear enough to have the positive impact on others we have always wanted.

Next Step?

If you’d like support in becoming your own Loving Self Advocate and practicing taking responsibility in a healthy way, check out my upcoming free, masterclassCLICK HERE TO REGISTER
 
I’m here to support you like you’ve never been before. I mean that. I won’t judge your past. 
Much Love,
Angie Monko,
Life Coach for Intuitive Women Leaders