"If I won't be myself, who will?"
~ Alfred Hitchcock

Strengthening your boundaries is one of the most powerful ways to transform your relationships and improve your life personally and professionally. This month we look at boundaries.

Boundaries let us know the difference between our authentic selves and our social self that is based on pleasing others. People with strong boundaries lead happier, more fulfilling lives. They feel confident to speak their truth. They accept what they want and they reject what they don't want in their lives. Having strong boundaries is very attractive.

Weak boundaries disempower us and disrespect those around us.

Weak boundaries show up in a number of ways:
The inability to say no.
The fear of displeasing someone.
The tendency to rescue others.
The expectation of being rescued.
Not expressing our true feelings.
Attracting people who take advantage of us.
Allowing outside opinions to determine our self-worth.
Feeling like a victim.
Feeling obligated, indebted.
Trying to change someone else.

So where do weak boundaries come from?
When we were children, pleasing parents and teachers and friends was necessary to our survival. We needed to learn how to bond, how to read reactions, how to compromise. These are not skills to give up. This is where we learn the empathy and compassion that makes relationship possible.

Problems arise when, as adults, we are unconsciously ruled by these needs to please, bond, or compromise. We are operating out of fear more than love. When we are acting from unconscious impulses we give up our ability to choose responsibly, and we become victims and victimizers.

We all have areas in our lives where our boundaries are nice and strong, and other areas where our boundaries get weaker. (The higher the stakes, the stronger the likelihood is that fear will come in and weaken our boundaries.) The easiest way to check the strength of your boundaries is to ask yourself: "How free do I feel here to say what I feel and to ask for what I want?"

Take a look at your own life.
Where are your boundaries strongest?
Where are they weakest? Why?
What small step can you take to be more honest and authentic in that area of your life?

As you strengthen your boundaries in any area of your life, you will increase your self confidence. You will attract better relationships. You will enjoy more respect and success.

"To free us from the expectations of others, to give us back to ourselves - there lies the great, singular power of self-respect."
~ Joan Didion

Author's Bio: 

Morgana Rae, a Master Results Coach and mythologist trained in NLP, hypnosis, and co-active coaching, draws on these skills and 20 years in the entertainment industry to create fun, dynamic exercises that transform your life quickly – with stunning results. Clients range from entrepreneurs and entertainers, to executives from IBM, AIG Investments, Microsoft, and Miramax Films. Clients learn to attract more than they chase, and to enjoy success without sacrificing their humanity. Morgana is a popular speaker and frequent television and radio guest. She delivers keynote addresses and breakout sessions at conferences and expos from Los Angeles to Oslo. Contact Morgana at