Well, I think it is now time to practice what I preach.  I have been compliant my entire life to a fault.  I’ve put others needs before my own at the expense of not getting what is important to ME done and/or not having any down time to enjoy myself or at times my family.  I created a habit of always being on the go and not wanting to disappoint anyone, until NOW!  And I will say it is a challenge.  It is difficult enough to say, “No” to people that I care about, but what’s worse is their resistance to my setting boundaries.  As much of a shock that it is to me that I’ve said no; those receiving this from me for the first time just about fall over in resistance to my not catering to their needs.

So now what?  Do I cave and keep the peace? 

Well, I’ve done that in the past and that just ends up the same.  The pattern of putting myself last on the list continues.  Caving to keep the peace, simply does not work. 

The key is to stick to your guns and be consistent.  Once you become more assertive and are consistently doing so, whether it be actually saying, “no” to requests or putting to words how you feel or what your thoughts are on a topic that you have a differing opinion.  Those who are used to you dropping everything for their needs or your always listening without responding with your thoughts and opinions will resist and they may even get angry.  Unfortunately, that is likely to happen in the beginning, which is the icky part of setting boundaries that have been long, long overdue, but part of the process nonetheless.

And so what is the price of this change in you? 

There may be a few people unwilling to accept that you are not the same and they may not find much of a need for you anymore.  Is that someone that you need in your life?  

The good news is that those who truly care about you overtime will respect and accept you and your new boundaries.  Those close to you will welcome and encourage the change because they care about you and want you to be happy.  They may even decide to follow your lead and make some positive changes for themselves.