Codependency: How to Say No for Protection (Part 3 of 4).
Greetings. Welcome to my post. In my first two posts, I invited you to view learning the importance of boundaries as a means of protection. What we value is what we protect. If you value your house and all the possessions inside the house, you will want to protect it by putting locks and windows around the house to protect that which is inside the house. Saying no people who like to steal is a good idea if you want to protect that which is yours from being stolen.
In the say way, we all need to protect our lives from others by learning how to say no as a means of protecting and preserving our life. To protect yourself means to take responsibility of what you want to own. And one of the biggest areas of boundaries is this topic of choice. All people need to feel the freedom to choose, and to make our own choices for our lives.
So let’s look at a simple example of when we don’t protect our choices. Let’s say you go out to dinner with someone and you choose a chicken main course item for your dinner. But let’s say the other person you are with hears your choice and says to you: “No, you should not get the chicken; you should get the salmon dish. Your choice of chicken is not a good choice and I think your choice of salmon would be better for you, so let me choose your food item for you.”
Now, I don’t know about you, but when we are with someone who views our choices as not good enough or wrong, and we allow them to choose for us, we then are saying to them: “You are right, I am wrong, your choices and your ideas are better than my ideas and choices. I will listen to you and your choices.” Now you may laugh at this but this does happen when we become passive, complaint, and we don’t want to fight or argue anymore. We just give in because we feel the fight to protect ourselves and our choices will not get heard by the other person and we exchange what we want for peace in the relationship by going along with what the other person choices for our lives.
When we give up our choices, than we are basically not protecting our freedom and we become a slave to the other person. At the root of slavery is an intention on the other person’s part to take away someone else’s choices. When we don’t protect our choices, we become a slave to the other person. We basically say to them, “My will is not important and your will is the only one that counts around here. When we give up our choices, we basically say to the other person that they can force themselves on us in order for us to do what they think is our choice.
But allowing someone to take away our choice can also happen when they manipulate us with guilt, or shame, or with convincing comments that make us feel bad or wrong for making this or that choice. In other words, when you don’t take a stance in what you choose, than you recognize that love and acceptance is conditional. If I say yes to your choice, I will get loved. But if I say no to you and make my own choice, I will get criticized and condemned. Not protecting your own choices will only result in allowing someone to steal your freedom, steal your love, and steal your joy.
As a result, we all need to protect our choices and give ourselves permission to say: “I never knew I had a choice” and to really recognize that we want and value love and freedom. When we give up our choices, slavery will creep in and we will exchange acceptance for conditional love. Thanks for reading and if you need help with this, please give me a call and let me help you find freedom and not slavery.