Patterns are all around us. From the veins in a leaf in nature to the brickwork on a building or sidewalk in architecture. From patterns of speech to patterns of behavior, we are immersed in patterns. When it comes to setting boundaries, or feeling the freedom good boundaries provides, much is rooted in your patterns of behavior. These patterns may be conscious but often the patterns are happening unconsciously and without much consideration. It’s only upon taking personal responsibility and some self examination that understanding happens.
The key is not being attached to the outcome and this will give you freedom.
I recognized how repeating patterns were impacting my own boundaries when I gave some thought to my dating relationships. It was after having four exact same relationships with guys that were all the same that it became clear. I was the common factor in each relationship. The pattern began with me…and ultimately would end with me.
This was a big moment that led to some self-examination and some personal responsibility. This moment led me to ask:
- What is getting in my way?
- And what needs to change?
- Then determine what needs to happen next.
Which power are you holding on to so tightly that it is keeping you from the outcome you want? Your answers are the patterns you will reshape to better serve you, to strengthen your boundaries.
Consider this pattern that happens frequently when conducting business:
Someone completes your contact form inquiring about services. You schedule a call to further discuss their needs. While they seem interested, enthused, and in need of your services so they request a quote, you struggle to close the sale. Are you attracting the wrong people? Or, are you acting out a pattern that needs to change?
What Keeps Showing Up that Doesn’t Work for You?
When undesirable patterns continue to appear give these steps a try to stand in your power and form better boundaries.
Step 1: Own it. Recognize that something is off and you want a different outcome than has been happening.
Step 2: Ask yourself, What’s happening? Identify what is getting in the way of the outcome what you want. Be specific.
Step 3: Ask yourself, What am I doing now that is getting in the way of the outcome I want? Start inspecting so that you have better awareness of the pattern that has shown up. Keep asking this question to narrow down and get specific.
Step 4: Ask yourself, Where do I need to create a boundary? Knowing that boundary will allow you to ask for and honor what you need. For instance, in the example of closing the sale you may need to ask for the sale before the call closes. It could be as simple as asking, Would you like to work with me? When would you like to get started?
Step 5: Release the attachment. Once you know which boundary needs to be put in place then release your attachment to the old pattern. It hasn’t been serving you so let it go.
Step 6: End the resentment. Vow to release any negativity around the pattern so you are open to accept new patterns that better serve you.
If you would like to explore more around breaking free of behaviors that aren’t serving you I invite you to listen to my full podcast, Break Free of Behaviors that Don’t Serve Your Highest Good, with guest Jon Cheplak, author of the book Interrupt the Pattern – The Path to Your Highest Self.