Caring is not always doing.
Caring is sometimes not doing.
Caring is not always giving.
Caring is sometimes not giving.
Caring for others is listening. Caring for yourself can mean listening to others.
Caring for yourself can mean not listening to others. It can be, like whenever my neighbour was talking, he’d yak a stream of lies and bullshit nonstop, and I’m not exaggerating. I would go into the house because I couldn’t take it. It was just noise. Would it have been more loving to have listened to him? No? why? Because he was lying.
Or what about not watching the news? Caring for yourself is not listening here too.
When we talk about being unconditionally loving, what are we talking about? Only one of these dualities, like the one the person wants? Does this mean unconditionally loving or is there another definition?
Being unconditionally loving simply means doing everything with love in your heart, not out of fear. That’s it. Conditions are fear based.
Being unconditionally loving means doing things with courage, wisdom, intention, with awareness. It does not mean doing something that doesn’t offend anyone else, doesn’t anger anyone else, it doesn’t mean doing something that doesn’t hurt anyone else.
That’s pretty radical. Being unconditionally loving yet the other person gets hurt? Why? Because that’s their choice to be hurt, that’s not anything you have power over.
If I say to you, “Thank you but I don’t want you to send me emails with suggestions for my PTSD,” and you do, and I bin the email and you get hurt, is that my fault? Am I responsible for the fact that you’re hurt? No. Why? Because I warned you I didn’t want your email. I told you. If you don’t listen, that’s not on me, you hurt yourself.
Many people think other people “make” them do something. That’s because our largely unconscious society is very reactive. When you’re not reactive, and more deliberate about what you think, say and do, you realize that this concept of someone “making” you a particular way is false. You may even resent it.
He hurt me. No, he didn’t. Unless it’s a physical hurt, anything else is an emotional hurt. Have you ever been so “on to” someone toxic that you stop reacting to every nasty thing they say and do? This person is doing you a huge favour: They are teaching you to take responsibility for your own emotions and to stop reacting to others. Unless you choose to. What a wonderful lesson! Live with my boozer/drug addicted friend for three years and you stop reacting to his insults and begin to realize you’re above all of this and it’s really because of him that he acts that way. It has nothing to do with you and it never did. I used to just sit there looking at him saying, “Uh huh,” and of course this was cause for another litany of insults about how stupid I was, or whatever, but I had just stopped reacting to him. I didn’t believe him anymore. These people can do more for your self esteem than the nice kindergarten teacher you had that loved your butterfly drawings!
Unconditional love is living with no fear. Do you set conditions with others? Yes. Out of love for yourself and/or them.
Unconditional love is explaining assertively to another person how you feel.
Conditional fear based emotions would have you screaming at this person in anger.
Unconditional love is setting a boundary because you have needs you want others to acknowledge.
Conditional fear based scenario would have you not even trying, letting yourself be overrun, or not even asking.
People show you where your limits are. The people who challenge you show you where your limits are.
I know I have limitations around theft, I hate being stolen from. I have limitations around my PTSD and anxiety. I still have old triggers from when I was a child: not being listened to, my needs not being met by others, no workable social interaction…. People not respecting me. I released my sister because she called me “an interesting nut”. Ivo had to impress upon me the fact that she doesn’t even respect me, so why was I in a relationship with her?
Unconditional love does mean you recognize you have limits and you protect yourself.
I’m curious that unconditional love seems to say, “In love being unconditional, you can’t set boundaries.” I think many people think that’s what it means: that you have no boundaries. In having boundaries, what do they do for you: loose boundaries mean you take on others’ emotions and this leads to emotional drain and fatigue. Common signs of loose boundaries include overinvolvement in others’ lives; perfectionism and people pleasing; trying to fix and control others with judgments and advice; staying in unhealthy relationships; taking on too much work or too many commitments; and avoiding being alone too much. When your boundaries are too loose you can feel responsible for everything and everyone, powerless, imposed upon, and resentful. (taken from internet website)
Here are some signs that your boundaries need adjusting:
- Feel unable to say no
- Feel responsible for others’ emotions
- Concerned about what others think to the point of discounting your own thoughts, opinions and intuition
- Your energy is so drained by something that you neglect your own needs (including the need for food, rest, etc.)
- Avoiding intimate relationships
- Inability to make decisions
- Believe your happiness depends on others
- Take care of others’ needs, but not your own
- Others’ opinions are more important than your own
- Have difficulty asking for what you want or need
- Go along with others vs. with what you want
- Feel anxious or afraid
- Not sure what you really feel
- Take on moods or emotions of others around you
- Overly sensitive to criticism
Then there’s the general “letting others do whatever they want to you” boundary and since I’ve seen a lot of the underbelly of society, I don’t recommend not exercising this one. You do have to protect yourself, as an act of love. Ivo has posed the question before, “If you walk out in front of a truck and then decide to run from it, is this an act of fear or self-preservation?” It’s self preservation, obviously, and an act of love. We’ve heard too much about the saber toothed tiger chasing primitive man metaphors to understand that there is a higher mind that wants you to continue to be here. It’s not fear, you’re here out of your higher self’s love for you – always.
If you don’t believe me, ask your higher self to show you how much they love you. You may have 3 near misses, one fender bender, and a case of the flu that you survived before you begin to realize you’re supposed to be here, but your higher self will ensure you get the message one way or the other. It’s a question of understanding the message – your being alive means your higher self loves you. That doesn’t mean that people dying means their higher self is upset with them, by no means. It just means that their job here is finished. All good things must come to an end!
Boundaries are set in many ways: with yourself (internal boundaries), and with others (external boundaries). Internal boundaries regulate your behaviour and your conscience often has something to do with that. External boundaries are your agreements with other people.
Boundaries with other people specify how you want to relate to them. Now, ideally you are such a fantastic manifester that nobody that comes into your life brings anything negative for you to learn from anymore. You’ve done all your work and life now is a breeze. I believe there are people like that. They can love everyone who’s in their life because they’re not dealing with the underbelly of life anymore. Most of us aren’t there. We need boundaries. When we set a boundary it’s for some reason that’s advantageous to either us, them or both parties. When your boss says, “I’ll talk to you later about this,” they are setting a boundary that they don’t have time now, talk to me when I have available time.
I like boundaries because I use them when I realize that I’ve had enough of something, learned my lesson and I’m not going to go there anymore. I’ve noticed that when boundaries are weak, the lesson has to go forward. I’ve had several drug addicted alcoholics living around me the last 6 years who have all made their availability clear to me. I have turned them all down. Been there, done that, got the T-shirt, learned the lesson.
I also use boundaries with others to protect my time. I use boundaries with Merlin to protect the cleanliness of my home: I don’t like him walking on the countertop because he’s a dirty outdoor cat that sleeps under the neighbouring house. I have another boundary: I don’t bathe cats with soap and particularly in water because they hate water. It would be traumatizing for him. I also don’t like spraying anything on him. I let him clean himself but I don’t like him on the counter top because I eat food from that.
We tend to have boundaries to protect things that are dear to us, like our time, our money, our relationships, our sleep time, our relaxation time and more and for me, my counter top cleanliness. LOL
How can we be unconditionally loving when we are in a limited physical reality? We can do our best. Basically I feel we’re in two worlds simultaneously, the physical world and the spiritual world. Setting boundaries and limits with yourself and others in the physical world is necessary because of the current situation here, it’s a free will zone where precious few exercise free will. In the end, you have to examine your motivation for setting a boundary: Is it out of love or is it out of fear? Are you trying to make something good come out of it or are you afraid something bad will happen if you don’t say no?
**Channel: Sharon Stewart