This is the second in a series of nine articles on resilience.
The second habit is: Resilient people have solid boundaries
A common source of what some people call stress is to become over-loaded with demands from other people. Another, equally common is to become so isolated that you have no one to turn to when things get bad.
Knowing when to open up to people so that they become your friends and supporters, and when to say ‘No’ to people when you can’t take on any more is what ‘boundaries’ are for.
A boundary is like an invisible wall that you put up when you need space and time to yourself and put down again when it is time to develop your relationships. They are especially important to have in place when you have to deal with the real emergencies of life and you either have to ask for help or get on and deal with it alone.
Resilient people have a strong sense of Self and alongside that they have a strong sense of You. They respect your rights and your need for personal space and in return they ask that people respect theirs.
Resilient people don’t take on more they can handle and balance what they do for others with what they do for themselves. In the long run this ensures survival. Stressed, unhappy people tend not to be healthy people. And if you are constantly ill you won’t be able to care for yourself or for others.
Resilient people also value independence and self-sufficiency. They encourage it in their children because they foresee a time when their children will have to manage without them. The same goes for friendships and partnerships, for a relationship with a needy person is not really a true relationship at all. Nor is it healthy because it does not foster resilience. That is why a real friend sometimes has to say ‘No’ to you: because it may be for your own good.