Flower essence support for
learning how to make and honor boundaries
One of the most important abilities we need in relationships of all kinds is the ability to make and honor healthy boundaries. Boundaries are the invisible lines we draw around us that give others information about how we want to be treated.
Our relationships are colored by the subtle and spoken messages we give to others. If we are uncomfortable in our present relationships we must take responsibility for giving others information about how we want to be treated.
Learning to make and honor boundaries can be an on-going process of learning appropriate phrases to express our needs and taking risks by communicating with others. The journey does, however, begin right inside us by recognizing that the way that others treat us is a reflection of how we are treating ourselves. Do you tell yourself your are stupid when you make a mistake? Do you degrade yourself for the way you perform a certain task? Are you discontent with yourself in some way? It takes a lot of courage and inward reflection to recognize how we treat ourselves. Flower essences can be essential allies in this process and can support you in not only recognizing how you treat yourself, but in affecting permanent change for the better.
Learning to make and honor boundaries is a process of conscious evolution. As we learn to love and treat ourselves with respect we find the courage and tools necessary to change our outer relationships. The following desert flower essences are helpful for different aspects of healthy boundary-making.
Making & Honoring Boundaries Formula assists your awareness of how to make and honor healthy boundaries: to be able to interact with others without becoming enmeshed with their perceptions of who you are; to be able to give others the information necessary so that they will respect and honor you; and to facilitate removing walls of alienation.
I like to call this composite formula the “Crisis Formula” for relationship issues. Most difficulties in relationships can be helped by first assessing if you need to make any adjustment with how you are making and/or honoring boundaries with the person with whom you are having difficulty.
Making & Honoring Boundaries Formula can be used on its own, or in combination with any of the following essences, to help you strengthen your ability to make and honor appropriate boundaries in all facets of your life.
Bright Star is indicated when you are unable to say no to an entangling situation or person. There are many reasons why it is difficult to say one of the shortest words in the English language. Some of us learned that the consequences were ugly when, as a toddler, we attempted to use that word. Some of us were never taught that saying no was an option we could have. Instead, we were taught by example that yes was the only acceptable response. Others of us may have learned that even when you said no, people did not honor that you really meant it and violated your will.
Whatever is at the root of your inability, Bright Star can help you overcome inhibitions or even learned fears about saying no. It helps you have healthy boundaries by trusting that you deserve what you want.
For issues of autonomy, Canyon Grapevine brings appreciation of other energies as interdependent rather than competing. This essence helps you find a balance between dominance and dependency.
For many of us, interdependence is a great challenge, not because we don’t like other people, but because we have an inner compulsion to help everyone. When we engage in our desires to fix or help others, we sometimes find that we spend too much time focusing on others. We give too much and feel we don’t have enough left over for ourselves.
When we perceive other people’s needs, some of us feel that we are the ones who have to meet them. We find it very difficult to be sensitive to others without feeling a need to resolve their problems or needs. Because of our compulsion to help, we can feel reluctant to interact with others. Canyon Grapevine can help us find a healthy balance between supporting others and meddling.
An important foundation for making good boundaries is ascertaining when you really want, or are able, to do something for others and letting them know. Desert Christmas Cholla Cactus helps you communicate your limits with humor and ease, especially if you get caught up in other people’s needs or expectations. It is wonderful support when you feel obligated to do something for others but then feel resentment. It is also for when you feel controlled by others’ expectations and needs.
Only by having a good sense of self can you make good boundaries with others. This flower essence supports you in taking responsibility for owning and expressing who you really are, separate from the projections of others. Devil’s Claw’ is the essence to use if you have what I like to call “chameleon consciousness”, or a tendency to identify yourself according to who you are with at a given time.
I think that the Devil’s Claw is very important for those of us who don’t really know who we are. We attempt to have an identity by receiving a reflection from others. We try to please others and become who we think they want us to be.
Devil’s Claw can help you let go of an incessant focus on what others think so you can focus on what is important to you. It helps you detach from continual assessment of what others expect of you so you can find your own originality.
Communication is essential to boundary-making. This is the essence to use when you are afraid to say something for fear it will jeopardize the relationship. All communication holds a risk: will you lose a person’s love or respect if you say what you really feel?
You may think you know exactly how someone will react to what you have to say. Because you have pre-judged another’s reactions, you do not say what you know you must. Fishhook Cactus helps you take the risk and communicate and you are often surprised when the response you expected doesn’t come. This is the essence of choice for all issues around communication.
Good boundary-making requires that you focus on what you know is in your best interest, so you can compassionately interact with others. For those who become too easily distracted by the needs of others, Hoptree supports you in staying in alignment with your purpose and remaining focused on what is essential to your highest good. It’s main support is in bringing you clarity about the importance of your own needs and the ability to use yourself as the reference point when assessing where you will put your focus.
If you feel dependent upon others for all your emotional support, you cannot find autonomy and boundary-making becomes a foreign concept.
Milky Nipple Cactus is the flower essence for those who demand constant attention from others. This “weaning” essence calms you and transforms dependence into self-nurturing autonomy. It helps you take responsibility for your own needs rather than waiting for support to always come from others.
This is the essence to use when you need to learn how to support yourself and be your own inner mother. It is excellent for those who had any trauma or difficulty at the time of weaning, for those who were not breast-fed, and for those who never learned how to find emotional support within.
It is difficult to make boundaries when you always seek answers from others. Birdcage Evening Primrose is for those who are overly influenced by what others think is right for you. This essence helps you see through other’s projected images and ideals to realize forms of self-expression that are in harmony with your essential nature. It helps you discern your own unique soul pattern and believe in yourself.
If you tend to seek outside sources for guidance or self-validation, this is the essence for you. It is excellent for those who wish someone would just tell them what is the right thing to do. Birdcage Evening Primrose helps you find that the answers you seek are within you.
Dogbane helps you overcome the fear of hurting others when that fear is based upon codependency. This is the essence that provides support when you want to leave home but are afraid that it will hurt others.
Rebelling is an important part in developing boundaries. We sometimes have to push against what we have learned so we can express what truly expresses our own individuality.
Dogbane helps you access the courage to follow your rebellious instincts. When rebellion is an appropriate way to make a boundary, this is the essence to support us. This is excellent for teenagers and for those who never properly rebelled as a teen or young adult. It is also excellent if you need to rebel against something in your present life but are afraid to.
Boundary-making extends into all levels of your being. It is important to have emotional, intellectual, physical, and psychic boundaries. Sangre de Drago is for those who have difficulty making psychic boundaries.
If you are a “psychic sponge” who picks up sensitive impressions of those around you, this essence can help. Sensitivity is a good capability, but you need to be in command of when you use it and not be used by it.
Sangre de Drago flower essence supports you in making psychic boundaries based upon appropriate discrimination and natural morality. Use it together with Making & Honoring Boundaries to support deep level change in your ability to make psychic boundaries.
In the physical body, your immune system is an important boundary-making intelligence. The Immune Formula is used to strengthen our protective systems through becoming aware of our own boundaries and individuality. It supports internal calm, protection and stability. It helps us in nurturing our inner fire, the life force and our own inner creative response to changes that disturb equilibrium.
Not every flower essence mentioned above will be appropriate for every person’s specific needs. Different people have different issues with boundaries. The process itself of exploring and contemplating your boundary issues is important. It is the foundation for successfully selecting the most beneficial flower essences. Usually, careful self-examination can clearly show you which of the above flower essences are most appropriate for your particular needs.
Though you can use more than one flower essence together, you probably will not need to use all of the ones mentioned here. After contemplating your relationship to this issue, select the flower essences that apply for you, or use an intuitive method to select among them. (For more information on how to do this, see The Art & Technique of Using Flower Essences.) A general guideline is to use four drops at a time, four times a day, in water. However, it is fine to follow your intuition and use them as often as you like. Most people find that they tend to use them more often in the beginning and less often towards the end of the cycle. Unless otherwise indicated, a cycle is usually two to four weeks. [more]
For information on how to clearly evaluate the effects of the essences you have used, see The Art & Technique of Using Flower Essences.