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Tuesday, June 29, 2010

ADVICE: Mitch Darnell on Boundaries

Dear Mitch:
I’m writing this to you because I’m tired of being a push-over. Throughout my entire life, I have lived to please others (especially my families). I was taught at young age to always help others especially families when they are in need of help. Whenever someone needed something or asked something of me, I would drop whatever I’m doing and do whatever they asked of me. There are many times when my kindness is not even rewarded with a simple “thank you”. I don’t expect anything in return, but sometimes it would be nice to know that you’re appreciated.

From now on, I need to start living my life for me. I need to put myself first, and offer my assistance under my terms and conditions. I will set boundaries within my limit. Is this being selfish? I don’t intend to isolate myself from everyone, just limiting my services. I hope I can go forward with this without feeling guilty and still have their respect. I would very much like your direction on this decision, Mitch.

Thank you,
Nervously Stronger
Folsom, CA


Dear Stronger,

“Your current healthy boundaries were once unknown frontiers.” – Author Unknown

CONGRATULATIONS on setting boundaries for yourself!!

~ Have you CELEBRATED yet?!... Yes, CELEBRATE!! Celebrate challenges, and your growth!!

Honoring yourself by setting boundaries is something to acknowledge! Go hit that Roman Spa in Calistoga which I mentioned in the last column! Or, do what you consider a treat FOR YOU!!

Now, re: How to set and honor your boundaries without upsetting the loved ones!

~ I recognize that I challenge my readers to evaluate the nature and quality of their relationships, and to identify what “love” is in their variety of associations…

Meanwhile, we don’t necessarily want, or need to, terminate relationships just because they’re not entirely “on the same page”, do we?! We’re already in a very bifurcated lifestyle – Separated from loved ones by lifestyles, by our beliefs, our commitments… our paradigms! We can end up very lonely if we eliminate connection with everyone who doesn’t entirely “match” our philosophies or our needs, can’t we?!

Perhaps you already recognize that the struggle here is within your “self”…

… One piece is identifying your definition of “helping others”, and of “when they need help”. Your boundaries will become empowered the more you recognize when you truly ARE needed, and what REALLY constitutes HELP!

This sort of insight development can be quite daunting. Learn where YOU “start” and “end”, and where others “begin”… Respecting “self” and “others” while simultaneously honoring the facts that:

• We’re all interconnected ~ Co-Occupants of a Bio-Psycho-Spiritual Energy Paradigm

• We can’t be responsible for the entire energetic paradigm, yet what we think and how we behave sends ripples throughout – Affecting many…

➢ Deep inside, you know what constitutes your responsibilities to yourself and to others. Find reasons to access and listen to your intuition...


➢ There are answers as to what you should do - when and where… in meditation’s silence

• Guilt is ego-centric… Destructive, divisive and NOT honoring of healthy love

➢ You DESERVE to take care of YOU! Saying “no” can be the best thing one can do sometimes!

➢ Saying “yes” can also really feel good! There is honor, connection, self-esteem and intimacy in truly helping another!

➢ Others’ needs – There’s a quandary…

° An incredible reality:

You’re either part of the solution, or part of the problem!

° Develop your boundaries to INCLUDE those you love…

° Recognizing that you can only do your best

° Allowing that your job is not to keep others from their lessons

° While honoring healthy traditions and family relationships

° Lovingly allowing yourself to make plenty of normal, human mistakes!

Please honor your feelings around not being recognized/appreciated. You deserve your feelings, and may wish to use this as a discussion point with your family. Either way, you want to make boundary decisions centered in love – For yourself and your family… NOT from a place of hurt or anger!

Ultimately, “living my life for me” means a powerful interdependence – Where you’re non-ego-centric, and you ARE focused on the paradox of “we” and “me”!...

Last Truism: Life loves to push us… To show us that our capacities are MUCH larger than we believe! … That It’s All Opportunities To Learn!

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Mitch Darnell, MA, OM
Relationship Coach & Wedding Officiant
tel: 916/247.1655; Online: