Every human being has boundaries (by virtue of their natural right) which ought to be respected by other people. And the respect of these boundaries is what it means to show love to humanity. When we do not respect other people’s boundaries, we are being abusive. For example, any form of verbal abuse shown towards another human being can be regarded as a violation of that person’s boundaries. There are of course several reasons we tend to disrespect other people’s boundaries. One very common reason is that many people are being raised with different boundary expectations. In other words, many people act in some ways which are abusive and inappropriate, without realizing that they are violating other people’s boundaries.
In a world brimming with over seven billion people, every single person desires freedom and security. The belief that we all want to be famous and recognized by a lot of people is actually a misconception. There are people called introverts who do not necessarily want to be popular, but just want to be free and secure. Some people do not need your excessive praises, lofty remarks, or intense affections. They just want to live with their very few loved ones, without dealing with any economic constraint, and without being victimized. Therefore, what most people want isn’t your great affection, but that you respect their boundaries (for example, living freely without being victimized).
Most people do not actually want to be treated like celebrities. Instead, they don’t want to be ridiculed, scorned, or diminished. They want to be able to live their lives without anyone making them feel like they are worthless. They want freedom from other people’s nosiness and messy criticisms. They wish they can live without the prying eyes of gossipy neighbours, and without somebody telling them that they look awful for not wearing enough makeup. The truth is, most people are satisfied with being shown much love and respect by their loved ones. What they want from the rest of the world is freedom from their meddlesome actions and intolerance. Therefore, the only way to show love to humanity is to stop interfering in other people’s lives, unless they are harming other people.
If other people could be calm and mind their businesses. If they could stop gossiping and start focusing on making their lives better, if they could keep quiet rather than give negative remarks about other people, and if they could focus on their personal issues without pointing fingers at other people’s flaws, the world would be a better place. It isn’t clear why many people are quite meddlesome and critical. One could say it is as a result of emotional insecurity. And while low self-esteem and a desire to feel superior (and therefore worthier) are contributory factors, it costs absolutely nothing to be humane to all people. It is a completely painless experience.
The following are ways to respect other people’s boundaries.
- Do not gossip about other people.
- Do not meddle in other people’s lives, except they want you to know about them.
- Do not treat other people with scorn; remember it hurts.
- Be careful not to sound racist, sexist, or discriminatory; remember, nobody wants to feel less worthy or significant.
- Never give a negative remark about other people’s appearance or level of intelligence.
- Ensure your body language is polite and not condescending.
- Reply politely whenever other people ask questions.
- Never speak about yourself unless you want to share a valuable experience.
- Do not ridicule or taunt other people.
- Giving the silent treatment is not exactly respectful.
- Avoid discussing sensitive topics around people who may find them sensitive.
Do not expect other people to respect your boundaries simply because you respect their boundaries. Other people may not understand what boundaries they are supposed to respect. Moreover, they may not even know that their own boundaries are supposed to be respected.
However, set your boundaries and make them clear.