Love boundaries are a powerful way to love yourself and your child unconditionally
By Karen Braveheart
What’s a love boundary?
How does it help you discipline your child with self worth?
"A love boundary is a healthy way of setting expectations about how someone else should treat you"
It’s healthy to set boundaries
It’s being assertive for yourself and your wants and needs and not allowing someone to cross the line
Not your partner
Not your kids
Not your BFF
Not your parents
Not your own fear
You are giving a message loud and clear that you are worthy of being loved, respected, and accepted for your wants and needs
A love boundary feels good
A boundary is unconditional love for yourself which is why I call it a love boundary. It always brings you to a place of peace within you and others too.
Establishing and maintaining a boundary is easy. It feels soft and light and peaceful.
It makes you feel good and creates space to move forward in your relationship with another.
"Creating love boundaries is a beautiful gift you give your kids. When they see you setting boundaries with others, they learn to love and respect themselves too. You're modeling this for them."
What it feels like when you don’t have a love boundary in place
When you don’t have a love boundary in place, then you’re misaligned with love for yourself and something needs to change.
You’ll know it because it feels heavy inside and will bother you about another person. It feels heavy when you find yourself complaining about someone else.
It’s like being in a waiting pattern because you’re waiting on the other person to change. That’s not empowering at all or loving kind to yourself.
It’s not in flow with love because you’re not receiving what you deserve.
"If you find yourself talking about someone to another that’s a red flag that u need a love boundary"
Why love boundaries are so important
Boundaries form the core of a stable relationship.
You have to tell people how you like to be loved. I call it setting expectations and it provides a structure in your relationships.
What you’re really doing here is prioritizing your peace. Once you set the boundaries, then wait and see what happens next.
If it aligns with your boundary, then move forward. If it doesn’t, then you have a choice to make and decide what your next move is. It’s a journey.
Placing a love boundary with someone is easy. You’re actually growing in a healthy relationship together.
A love boundary gives another person the space to make their own choice. They can either honor and respect your boundary or not. Then you have a choice to make.
See the 4 steps on how to set a boundary below!
Children thrive on love boundaries and parents love them because it gives them freedom
Children need love boundaries. They thrive on them because they know there’s a reliable foundation in place, with consistent routines and trusted expectations, so they can feel emotionally safe, relaxed, and can just be themselves.
Parents benefit from setting up consistent and trusted love boundaries too. Once your child understands the boundary, you don’t have to spend time following up. It gives you freedom- more time to do the things you want to do.
There are 2 kinds of love boundaries I have with my munchkins that set expectations for what’s to come:
RULES and EXPECTATIONS
- Rules- What’s acceptable and what’s not- Your kids need to know the house rules. They need to be consistent. If the rules change frequently, it lacks trust and stability and your household won’t run efficiently. It will get chaotic
Here are 3 examples of rules (age appropriate)
- After you’re done eating, you put your dish and sippy cup in the sink or dishwasher
- If you make a mess, it’s your responsibility to clean it up
- For my teens, it’s ok to be in a mood, but you need to be respectful to yourself and others by projecting your anger onto them
- Routines-Setting Expectations- Routines aren’t just for bedtime or naptime.They set expectations on how to interact with your kids. I use them daily with my munchkins
- For older kids, every morning we go over logistics- my youngest has boxing, my middle has football, I have a work meeting at 2pm and back to school night at 6pm, and my daughter has work. Everyone knows where everyone is that day and evening, how they’re getting there, and when I’m available
- When my kids and I go to a public bathroom, I always select a spot before entering the bathroom to meet up after we’re all done
- When my munchkins were younger, we had a buddy system for crossing the street where we’d all hold hands. We had assigned partners before we got out of the car. Same partner every time on that day. We’d switch it up on our next outing
- Bedtime routines are important. A nighttime routine for young children may look like this in your home. Dinner at a set time like 5:30-6pm. Clean up. Then play time before bath. Bath at a set time like 7pm. Reading, snuggles, bathroom, lullaby, kisses, and then sleep by around 8pm
Our make the bed routine- Justin at 4 years old making his toddler bed with all his favorite stuffies and someone’s T-shirt too
Here are 4 examples of routines
Ryan making his bed at 6 years old
4 steps to setting a boundary
- Step 1- Realize that something is bothering you inside and you need to make a change to feel better. For example, you feel hurt when your partner says you’re weird
- Step 2- Get clear on what kind of boundary with your partner feels good to you. For example, telling your partner to stop calling you weird because it hurts your feelings. The key is that it has to feel peaceful for you!
- Step 3- Tell the boundary to the other person- it really hurts my feelings when you say I’m weird. Please stop and don’t call me weird ever again
- Step 4- Enforce the boundary. If your partner stops, then great. If they don't, then you have a choice to make. You’ll need a stronger boundary. What does that look and feel like for you?
10 examples of how I learned to create healthy boundaries in my life
- My mom did not know how to love. Instead, she took my love. It taught me that love is unrequited. So I married a taker and not a giver like me. I learned to love myself here and set boundaries for myself. I divorced him
- I honored my commitments even if it meant rejecting myself. There were times in my 20s when I’d go to lunch with someone that I made plans with weeks earlier, but when the day arrived, I just wanted to be by myself and spend my lunch hour in a bookstore. It made me miserable to show up to lunch. I learned that my own heart is my highest commitment and started canceling in a loving, honest way if I didn’t want to go
- My kids would call me and interrupt my work meetings. I let them because it was shortly after my divorce, and I wanted to be there for them. I learned to set firm boundaries with them not to call me unless it was important. Not that their brother stole their snack. Or the cat walked on their homework. Or they can’t find their backpack. Sometimes though your child has an emotional need to hear your voice and get a virtual hug. I always welcome that!!
- When I was 27, I injured my hamstrings from a repetitive sports injury. My law school didn’t have sports teams so I took up running every morning. I’d run 5 miles/day and never took a break. I grew up with the belief- no pain, no gain. I ran through the pain for months until one day my hamstring had enough and I couldn’t walk. I learned to listen to the wisdom of my body and rest when I didn’t feel like running
- I hired for an executive level position a few years ago and paid him a lot of money up front. He was referred to me by a trusted colleague, and I took my time to interview him over several weeks and rounds. He checked off all the boxes; however, he underperformed and failed to meet the terms of our contract. The boundary I set here was to fire him. Every business owner has bad hires which is why they have a 3-6 month probationary period to see a person’s actions after hiring. I already knew to hire slowly and fire quickly, but learned to never pay someone up front. Wait for their performance over time. A person's true colors will always reveal themselves to you
- I used to believe a person's words- I trusted them and also was desperate to hear them and get their love. Then as I matured, I learned to watch a person’s actions. They reveal their true intentions. I learned to only trust a person of integrity- whose actions match their words
- I used to be a workaholic- especially when my kids were young- I was a full time mom, full time associate college professor, and working part time on my side hustle- the Adi plate (Alex- hyperlink to adi plate product page here) which was an invention idea at the time. I wasn’t sleeping. I wasn’t being kind or compassionate to myself. I learned to take a day off when I need to. My biggest inspiration and nuggets of wisdom come from these rest periods
- I fell in love with a person’s potential, not the reality of who they really are showing me. I learned that even though I see their beautiful potential, they have to want to reach it by loving themselves. A different version of following a person’s action
- I stayed in jobs I hated because I chased the money, but was miserable. I remember working as a senior associate at a mid size medical malpractice defense law firm in NYC. The partners were like wolves dressed in sheeps’ clothing. The main partner stole my killer cross examination strategy of his main expert witness as his own which was the key in him winning the trial. He took all the credit and gave me none. When I confronted him, I was fired. It turned out to be the best thing ever. I started my own successful law practice, was happier, worked less hours, and made way more $$. I learned that everything always works out for the best
- The boundary I’m currently working on is to stop reminding my teens to do their chores more than once. I'm getting busier these days and need to be more mindful of how I spend my time. The love boundary I put up is that if they don’t do it by a certain time or if I have to remind them, they will add mom’s chore to their list so I can gain back my time spent reminding them. I’m learning to value my time even more so I can move forward on my own dreams
- Look at your relationships including your relationship with yourself
- Ask yourself is there anywhere in your life where a boundary is needed? M you need to place a boundary?
- To learn more about the Prodigi Kids Self Worth Parenting Paradigm, read our free eBook. You'll gain a deeper understanding of how to raise your child with core beliefs of self worth and the neuroscience behind it
- Read our blog "Discipline vs. Punishment," which does a deeper dive into exactly how our model built on love and discipline builds positive self worth. In it, I discuss how "teachable moments" and "love boundaries"- 2 terms I coined, when used daily with your child, lead to happier, healthier, and more connected relationships
- Bring our products into your home to encourage a more loving engagement with your children and support our mission to make our Self Worth Parenting Paradigm the norm!
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About the Author Karen Braveheart, CEO
Karen Braveheart is an attorney turned entrepreneur and mom of three who deeply cares about making the world a happier place by changing how we raise our children. Learn more