Many, many times I witness women giving their power away to men. You start out strong, confident and having a full life, and as the relationship progresses, you wake up one day realizing you haven't spoken to your friends in months and your whole life revolves around supporting the man in your life.
More from YourTango: How to Communicate When an Argument is Brewing
Boundaries are very useful because they act like a "fence" protecting your property. When you have healthy boundaries set up that you stick to, it gives you more freedom to make better choices in your romantic life.
Another advantage to boundaries is they help you easily recognize others who take personal responsibility and respect themselves, making it easier to zero in and attract (or stay with) the right mate. Many women I coach with often arrive at my doorstep with a history of unhappiness and dissatisfaction in their past relationships. What often gets revealed is where they've compromised too much at some point - many times to avoid being alone.
Wondering if you have unhealthy boundaries? Take a look at the top 7 signs:
1. Adjusting your life to suit a man’s schedule
2. Giving in to anything that is not aligned with your values
3. Settling for less than you know you really need or desire
4. Staying in a relationship that you know is passed its deadline
5. Smothering the person you're dating with excessive needs or control
6. Going back to a relationship that you know is over
7. Entering a relationship to avoid being alone
After a lifetime of dating and having relationships, I personally have experienced all of these at one time or another. One relationship in particular I had many years ago I fell head over heels in love and suddenly found myself in category # 3. He was gorgeous, charming and romantic AND had divorced 4 times, was emotional unavailable and still had feelings for his last wife.
It was so frustrating because we had a very real, deep connection but he kept (emotionally) going in and out of the relationship. He'd be all in, and then suddenly all out. What I needed and desired was his full attention and commitment but I kept settling by forgiving his behaviour in the hopes he would eventually change.
After a year of this I finally rose up and honored myself by ending the relationship. Is any of this resonating for you? Don't panic, I'm going to help you!
To get you started on the road to honouring yourself, the first thing I want you to do is throw out the list you have of your perfect partner. It likely reads something like: -
Athletic, perfect body, powerful leader, wealthy, ambitious, fun, witty, smart etc...
More from YourTango: How to Embrace Your Personal Power With Love & Money
In all my years of coaching, I have yet to meet anyone who got divorced/ broke up because their partner wasn't witty enough!
Instead, I want you to get clear and make a list with your preferences and the character of your ideal partner. An example of a character trait would be how they treat themselves, you and those around them. Do they treat waiters like servants or do they treat everyone with respect and a sense of equality?