60: Creating Interdependence with Boundaries [Rebranding Trauma Therapy Series]

Most of us know how to behave appropriately in society, which is helpful in navigating the world. We follow the laws of our community, pay our bills, wait in the grocery lines, treat animals with kindness, etc. But sometimes, society (or our culture) teaches us a set of rules that don’t align with what is best for us.

If you’re a woman, you’ve likely felt this. We’ve been given this curriculum around boundaries and being available to others. We’re expected to act a certain way and be available to our partners, children, colleagues, even strangers whenever they have a want or need. And if we don’t jump to someone else’s needs immediately, we fall back on the negative messages that we’ve been taught: that we’re bad. This creates relational trauma and disturbance and we can sit in this for decades.

The reality is that society’s rulebook, this curriculum we’ve inherited and passed along for generations, isn’t our problem. And when we start creating and upholding our own rules, or boundaries, we can teach others that our rules matter too.

This week, I’m sharing more about how we’ve grown up with this curriculum in our hands that isn’t serving us or the people around us and how we can start noticing this so we can make changes. I share a three-step process to walk through when you receive inputs from others that will help you start to implement your own rulebook.

You don’t have to chameleon someone else’s experiences and you don’t have to change how you respond to someone based on their rulebook. Give yourself permission to not abandon yourself and take care of your own emotional experience first.

When something traumatic happens to us, it can be healing to have a therapist listen to and/or validate our horrible experience, especially if no one else has before. However, rehashing the details of that traumatic event can be retraumatizing. Brain-based therapies like EMDR teach us that we don't have to talk about the trauma or the details if we don't want because the real healing doesn't focus on the traumatic event itself.

The Zero Disturbance podcast is for educational purposes and is not a replacement for a therapeutic relationship or individualized mental health or medical care.

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With a Masters in Education from Vanderbilt, Kambria has been creating trainings and teaching adult learners for over 20 years. As the Director of Education and Quality Improvement at Stanford Medical School, she created ease in complex systems, thereby giving medical trainees successful learning experiences. Now, as a dedicated mom, therapist, and EMDR Consultant, Kambria knows what it means to do things efficiently, effectively, and in a learner-centered way. When she isn't podcasting or creating online courses, you can find Kambria playing with her twins on a beach in California.