Drawing boundaries is not a bad thing. And saying no is a complete sentence.
The word “selfish” is used in place of the word “self-centered” much of the time. Self-centered is probably the extreme on the ‘SELFISH’ continuum, in thinking the world revolves around one’s self. But being self-ish is a form of caring for yourself, protecting yourself and looking out for yourself. Drawing boundaries is not being self-centered.
We need some selfishness to be able to draw healthy boundaries and let people know what’s not OK and what we won’t do. There is nothing wrong with looking out for your-self. And in some cases you might be the only one who does, so step up for your-self. I’m learning how to do this now and what it really means.
It might only be in the form of ignoring some sort of attempt at contact, but your silence sends a strong message. There are times when words are not necessary to convey a message. Of course confrontation can be a healthy thing but that’s a whole other topic. At times it’s not a good idea to confront, especially if you’ve attempted to discuss and resolve repeatedly and the other party doesn’t get it. At some point, it doesn’t make sense to continue trying to make someone understand.
Don’t let manipulation sway you either. Healthy discussions are good and changing your mind is OK too. But this is where it’s important to really learn how YOU feel. Ask yourself, “Are you changing your answer from yes to no or no to yes because you want someone to keep liking you and approving of you? Or “Is it a genuine feeling within that is coming from authenticity?
Watch for the feeling of resentment. That could be a clue to what you really want to say and do.
Only you will know though, so get to know your intuition. You have your own answers.