Setting Boundaries with Adults


00:00:00    Alyssa:

You're listening to Voices of Your Village, this is episode 203. In this episode I got to hang out with my friend Xavier Dagba to chat about setting boundaries with adults, as adults. Gosh this is a hot one as we come into some holiday time for folks, a lot of family time, but really it's a hot one for all the time. What does this look like? What comes up for us from our childhood, and our social programming and our patterns and habits when we set boundaries with other adults. I know that it can be super loaded and I'm jazzed to share this episode with you, Xavier is a fantastic follow on Instagram as well if you want to head over there and follow him. Alright folks let's dive in. 


00:00:51    Alyssa:

Welcome to Voices of Your Village, a place where parents, caregivers, teachers and experts come to support one another on this wild ride of raising tiny humans. We combined decades of experience with the latest research to create the modern parenting village. Let's dive into honest conversation about real parenting challenges, so it doesn't have to be this hard. I'm your host, Alyssa Blask Campbell.

00:01:27    Alyssa:

Hey everyone, welcome back to Voices of Your Village today. I'm here with Xavier Dagba. Hi Xavier, how are you? 


00:03:09    Xavier: 

I am doing great. Alyssa I thank you for inviting me into your village, I am honored to be here. 


00:03:16    Alyssa:

I'm so jazzed that you're here to. I came across your Instagram and just like can't stop sharing and falling in love with everything that you share. I'm like, yes! This speaks so much to our work, it's so in alignment, so I'm glad that you carved out time to hang out with me today. 


00:03:31    Xavier:

That's fantastic. It's my honor, actually, I'm really honored to be here. I'm excited. I am anxious. I am eager. I'm all the things and I'm just over all happy. 


00:03:41    Alyssa:

Thank you. Can you share with our village a little bit about who you are and kind of what brought you here today? 


00:03:47    Xavier:  

Well, I am a transformational life coach and that's what I do for a living. Now, I often have a hard time with that question. I am a human being. I am a spiritual being hiding in the human body for now. I'm a father. I'm a spouse. I'm a dad. So it's a huge part of what I do daily and I'm just somebody who is like so eager about helping others. And this is what brought me to this line of work and this is what I'm trying to do with all my presence online and you're just sharing things that helped me on my own journey and I am just so excited that some of it resonated with you and I hope that it can serve your community. So if you have any other specific questions about me, I'm going to I'm going to answer them all but for now, this is what can come up about me. 


00:04:46    Alyssa:

I love it. There's no wrong answer. I'm sure we'll get into more of who you are as we go through. Today I want to chat specifically about boundaries. It's a topic that comes up so often because we can't do this work without boundaries and it's often a word that makes people have some feelings. What what is boundaries or what do boundaries mean to you? 


00:05:13  Xavier: 

The way I see boundaries, in two ways. The first thing is, boundaries is the way to get the space that you need to honor your truth. And also boundaries are way for you to show to others who you really are because in my experience when you have loose boundaries or when you don't have boundaries, you are giving you a fake image of yourself to the rest of the world because you are over your overextending yourself many times. You are bending who you are so many levels to meet them. So especially your loved ones. They don't have a true image of who you are when you don't have boundaries because you most of the time you are allowing them to see the facade just so that you can be, you know accepted by them. And boundaries for me it's just a way at first to give them, this is really who I am. This is what I'm willing to accept. This is what I'm willing not to accept. And it's also getting that space where you give yourself permission to be true within those boundaries. So it's not only for you to be true to yourself, but it's also for them to steal who you really are. And it's also for you to honor your truth. And that's how I see boundaries and this is often how I'm trying to get this across to other people. And the reason why boundary, that thought is such a touchy subject is because it's so related to a fear of rejection, fear of abandonment. You know, if I really stand for who I am, you know, I might be rejected for it. So it's really sensitive. Especially when we've been brought up in an environment that was full of codependency. So it is really really scary for people to assert their boundary. 


00:07:16    Alyssa: 

Yeah, that's the word that came up for me as you were just sharing about boundaries was that word, codependency. As you were sharing about like living in your truth and setting up, you know, this is who I am, what I will or won't accept. Takes a level of independence to be able to do that, right and that fear of like will you love me, am I lovable if I set and hold a boundary? It's so real. Let's chat a little bit more about that relationship of like codependency and really where that starts and how its fostered and and how it relates to boundaries or lack thereof. 


00:07:55    Xavier: 

Yeah, I think codependency just starts in the family, you know, it starts there because as a kid if there are parents listening to this and if there are parents that have that desire not to, forgive my french for this, not to **** up their kids. I'll just invite them to breathe in deeply because I'm going to disclose something, it's gonna happen, you know, no matter how loving you are you know, no matter how much you want to avoid doing what your parents did, and you will because of that desire. But to some degree we just can't meet all the needs of those tiny humans, you know, because sometimes they have even they have needs that we don't even perceive and what happens when a kid has a need that you don't perceive as a parent is you deny that need. And the kid needs you for survival like that kid really has no other way to navigate life without you for a long time. So in order to be able to be functional in the environment that you design has a parent, they also have to deny the need. They also have to abandon themselves in some way so that they can match the expectation that you have of them. And as they do do that they learn to disown their own needs in order to be approved of by you even though even if you are not doing that intentionally, even if you are not willing to hurt but there is hurt that happens there because the kid learns how to disown a part of himself so that he can remain functional in the family system. And this is where codependency begins, it's like I learned to just like show up this way so that mom likes it. I get to show up this way. So that dad likes it. I get to show up this way so that I receive affection from Dad or from Mom and this is really where it begins and sometimes it amplifies from there. I mean this has been my experience as well. 


00:10:07    Alyssa: 

Yeah, absolutely. And and I think it's, a couple things came up when you were saying that, we talk a lot about kids not being responsible for our feelings and that being unique to an attachment relationship, right when we're looking at secure attachment and the goal of that. And our ability to self-regulate so that they aren't in charge of our regulation. And we're not going to do this a hundred percent of the time. My husband Zack, we've like joked about like, I wonder what our kids will be in therapy for one day like of what I want them to know is you can absolutely go to therapy and you, my goal isn't that you get to adulthood, and we as parents have been flawless, that's not the goal here. And to really accept that, I like that you put up in quotes there for folks who are tuning in here that was in quotes because we are going to make mistakes along the way and it's not about perfection its just about progress here. And we, you know in parenthood you start with a human who is dependent on you for survival, right? There is this codependency right from the very beginning in order to survive and then as we move on, it's moving towards independence, right, it might be even like the first time they go to school and you separate or that first sleepover or when they choose to hang out with a friend over you and you're like, how did we get here? And being able to let that happen without them being responsible for for our feelings as the adult? It's such a hard shift, I think for so many of us to make because you want to hold onto those moments of when they need you that desire to be needed. 


00:11:52    Xavier:  

Absolutely, and I feel like there is a part of the, there is a part in that journey, in their journey that is going to be unconscious for us. The way we are going to harm. Most of it is going to be unconscious because I would assume that as a loving parent. If you see that you are being hurtful to your kid you are going to do something about it or you are going to try to avoid it. So most of the pain that we are going to inflict because it is going to happen and it's just like we need to, like there is a writer that I love, her name is Caroline Myss, maybe you know her. She talks about it as the sacred wounds of parenting because they are needed and because going to adulthood is teaching the kids how to actually claim again the parts of themselves that were disowned in childhood. So it's like there is that transition where the most important is to be very diligent on teaching the kids how to actually own themselves again. And this is the part that is not happening. So we have a lot of kids in adult bodies. You know, this is the part that is not happening. It's like we don't get to, honestly I want my kids to go to therapy. I wish it was available for me when I was transitioning into adulthood. It wasn't, right? So I've had to learn a lot of things by myself and it's just later on that I began to get help when I need it. And if they need help, as first in the in the family circle where you are actually sharing with them, the very tools that you are using right now in order to reparent yourself. Like I feel like there's a huge need to share that with them as well. When you begin their journey into adulthood. 


00:13:47    Alyssa: 

Yeah, that vulnerability. Woof. So when we now get to adulthood and we come here with some codependency, and a lot of us do. Let's chat about why it feels, or can often feel so uncomfortable to set and and hold boundaries. Somebody DM'd me the other day and asked me a question then she was like, oh, I'm so sorry for bothering you and I was like, oh babe, it's my job to regulate my boundaries here. It's not yours. Like you can DM me 8,000 times a day if you want and it's my job to choose when I have the time or energy to respond and what I have the capacity to respond to or not. And she was like nobody's ever said that to me that it was their job to regulate those boundaries and I was like, whoa. Whoa, that's so wild. And so how do we move into this? How do we go from this codependency and discomfort with setting and holding boundaries to really being able to assertively do so and and own that as our responsibility as a human. 


00:14:57    Xavier: 

Yeah. I feel like the first step to be able to do that without being aggressive, with full assertiveness, it is to claim yourself again. You won't be able to, you won't like, the first step to setting and owning boundaries in my opinion is really to begin the journey of healing the abandonment wounds, because if those abandonment wounds are still heightened when you are willing to assert a boundary it is going to feel, it's going to be the most extremely unsafe thing to do, you know and those abandonment wounds are those parts of yourself in there, you know that felt, that found safety in pleasing. This is what happened has a kid you found safety in pleasing others, you found safety in actually disowning yourself and it became a very safe thing to do. So right now when you have started, when you are trying to set a boundary, you are really going against yourself. It's really has nothing to do with others. It is you addressing that part within you that is like what is going on with you, you know, for the longest time, for 20 years, this is what we did in order to feel safe. And now all of a sudden you want to change. What is wrong with you. You know, you attacking me here. So it's like you become this salt, you get ready for change. So you become this salt that is ready for more, right? Because of the experiences that you went through you understand from now on I need to stand up for myself, but there is still a part of yourself that is unaddressed. Usually people just want to jump into setting boundaries without dealing with the fear of rejection of abandonment and only you can rescue those parts of your soul that are abandoned and when you do that, actually you show up from a different perspective. It becomes safe for somebody to reject you because of your boundary because now you have you. Now you can be a stand for yourself. Now you own the disowned parts again, you know and when you are able to re-establish that to really, healing the abandonment wound is really healing the self-abandonment meaning you going back and owning the parts of yourself that you just owned in order to please and when you do that, there is a sense of safety. It becomes even safe for you to be rejected because of the boundary because now you're not going to reject yourself anymore as a byproduct of their rejection because what happened in childhood you rejected yourself. Meaning disowned yourself, disowned the desire, disowned an expression of your soul. As a by-product of your parents rejecting you and this is really what created the biggest amount of pain. So I feel like the first step is really addressing the abandonment fear that is in there the wound that is still open. And when you do that, you just claimed the tremendous amount of power to stand in your truth and to be like this is who I'm willing to be right now and it's safe for me if you don't accept it. 


00:18:29    Alyssa: 

Oh my god, so powerful. It's so powerful because it hits on so much more than that fear of abandonment. It's that fear of not being loved, of not being enough and you know, so often we hear of this like, I'm a recovering people-pleaser and I think you're absolutely right that what we're missing in that "recovery" of people-pleasing is the healing of those those deep wounds from childhood. And how did we get to the point of people-pleasing is really what to look at. What brought us here. What were we afraid of, or what were we doing, you know, these are all coping mechanisms, we've adopted that were meant to keep us safe that were crucial in childhood. We didn't do anything wrong, we did what we needed to do to feel safe and it also for a hot minute brought up for me this concept of "mom guilt". Which we hear a lot of here. And really that fear of not being enough, not being good enough and I think that you know, at least in the culture that I grew up in, it was more common place for dads to set boundaries of like, I need time with my friends, or I need time by myself, or I need to be able to go to work, or I need whatever and just unapologetically, I'm going to do this because it's a part of me being me. And that we've developed this pattern often in motherhood and for women of, I'm going to do this but am I allowed to? Will people still love me? Will I be a good enough mom or friend or person if I take care of myself? And just the boundaries around self care that you clicked for me as you were chatting. 


00:20:09    Xavier:  

So there is that and sometimes I feel sorry for women and I feel sorry for my fiancé because of it because I can see that she also runs a business sometimes she feels that guilt and you cannot just tell somebody stop feeling like that. Right? It doesn't work. You cannot just tell somebody. Oh, it's okay not to do this. It doesn't work because sometimes it just visceral, you know, and it goes beyond yourself. It's like as you are trying to disconnect from that belief. You are also rejecting your elders. You are also rejecting your mom. You are also rejecting your culture. You are becoming an outcast and there is a need for belonging in all those things, you know kids, like kids will disown their needs so that they can agree to what the parent is saying because they want to belong we want to belong we want to belong to a community. So when you get brought up in this there is also the fear of not belonging anymore. Well, it goes beyond just like I am going to set get boundary now and fortunately maybe not, guys, this is how for men it has been going on for by them saying I actually want to take time for this, some time for this. They are still in their own matrix of how manhood should be. So it just feels true to them, you know, but just like unfortunately enough for women it takes a disconnect from the belief it takes to actually create safety internally again with the fact that by choosing to show up from this perspective. What is really happening? What is really going on here, is that I take a stand for something that my elders and that the society where I grew up with, or the culture I grew up with, never allowed, it was never safe to do that. So there is also a fear there and I think it is, and every time there is a fear to stand up for your truth there is self-abandonment somewhere. There is self-abandonment somewhere. There's a part of yourself that you've disowned somewhere and you get to go there again and to really own it again with all the consequences because owning a part of you meaning means also owning all the consequences that might happen out of that. Maybe your mom can tell you you are selfish if you choose to show up like this, but what you don't see is you are taking a stand for yourself and it's really crazy how kids model their own level of self-worth based on how the moms modeled it for themselves, is that you cant tell it to a kid. We see it. We see it and you can only be it for them. And it's crazy how the loving empowered women out there that dared to be like, I don't deserve it. I am worthy of it. Because in deserving there is a need to effort, there is a need to prove, you need to do something so that you deserve, but you claim worthiness. You remember worthiness. And when you're like, I claim this for myself as a mom. It is the most empowering thing that a kid gets to see to see your mom be like I am worthy of this I can hold both. I can hold my desires for you and my desire for myself. It's not an either or. I can be a great mom and I can be a great dreamer. This is the most powerful thing ever for kids to watch. 


00:24:02  Alyssa: 

I love it, made me a little teary. I'm currently pregnant. And so also I'm feeling a lot of emotions but it made me a little teary like, yes we can! And I think you brought up something that's really crucial when we are going to set a boundary when you get to that place where you're ready to do that and to claim it. But yeah, you might hear from people that you're selfish and it doesn't, when you set boundaries. It doesn't mean that other people are going to love them. Especially because like you said we've been doing this for so many years, right 10, 20, 30 40 years where we've been operating in a certain manner and when we make that shift, it disregulates the system not just within us but within the family system or within our community where we're setting a new boundary. And that's a shock to everyone, maybe your mom wasn't choosing for you to set a new boundary and now you are. And that's a shock to her and so being in a place where we, where it's okay to have somebody react or respond in a way that we had once feared. 


00:25:18    Xavier: 

Absolutely, and it's very necessary, and in my experience the first attempts are going to be very clumsy, you will find yourself over explaining your boundaries to somebody you will find yourself trying to get them to accept your own boundaries. This is usually what happens when we begin. I need you to understand that I need this right now, you know, there is the need and this is also another expression of the fear of abandonment. If you're going to set the boundary. I need them to accept the boundary, unless they're going to abandon me, you know, so we fall into over explaining. We fear that they're going to reject us. So we try to negotiate the boundary actually, but I need you to get it, like I need this space right now, you know, it happens within families. It happens with maybe your husband or you know, the father of the kids when you want to have let's say an hour for yourself a day, you know, just away from the kids and hour just for you. So there is gonna be that need to over explain to defend even. And when you get defensive there, it still means that on some level you haven't fully accepted your thought. It still means that on some level you are still resisting. It's not fully safe for you yet. And then you get to go there and integrate it again, you know, but what is really important is when you get to the place like the ingredient that is very necessary in order to assert the boundaries with emotional sovereignty, if we going to use that term, and compassion. And compassion for the other, where you are able to see them in the fear because they literally feel that they are losing you, this is also what is happening for them because when you change you are also disrupting their own environment and they are getting to deal with all of a sudden this new person. Like who are you you know, where is my friend, of where's my partner.  So understanding that it's also disruptive for them and showing up with compassion and being willing to have also compassion for self first. Meaning this is what I need right now for my truest self expression and I am not willing to budge and you also give to that person, the other person, an opportunity to practice and learn even more unconditional love and to expose really the quality of the relationship that they had with you because somebody who is willing to love you. Even if they disagree at first they going to take a step back and reframe and do their own inner work in order to meet you again somewhere and they going to meet you at the frontier of that boundary. And this is how it should be in my opinion. 


00:28:22    Alyssa: 

Yeah. Oh my God. I love it. I love that you brought up that it is really like when you're trying to convince them of, here or justifying or defending your boundary that you're doing that for yourself too still. Yeah, and it's okay if it's clumsy at first, it's okay if you are beginning on this journey and it isn't perfect from the get-go. 


00:31:01    Xavier:  

Just about this thing is, it is very important to not make yourself wrong in the whole process. It is so crucial not to make yourself wrong. Like I'm not even able to hold my boundaries, how shitty am I for that, you know that judgment, that oppressive voice that is usually a voice that we borrowed from somebody, you know, it's really important to see it. And it's really important to actually act despite it, you know, you can't suppress any part of yourself and claim to be whole, so you need to be able to see it and to come back to yourself, Self with a big S, and to just choose to keep going despite the voice that is there. So it's really necessary not to identify with that voice that is sometimes oppressive of yourself. Like oh my God, you can't even hold this little boundary. Oh you tried again. And you failed again, like all the ways you do it, you know your voice, you know, so it's really important to see it and to come back to Self and to go again. 


00:32:08    Alyssa: 

Yeah totally and it can feel in that moment like that is who you are, that voice can feel so powerful. And it can be hard to step back and see it as other, as not ourselves. Totally, I think as specifically as parents, I believe that setting and holding boundaries is one of the most powerful and loving gifts that we can give children both for our self and with them. And I find in our village that a lot of folks who grew up with really strict boundaries, perhaps in the household or with no boundaries that there's a pendulum swing and there's this fear of if I set this boundary with my kid Will they still love me? Will they feel loved? Will they know that I love them if I pick them up and put them in a car seat because they won't climb in or if I say it's time to turn off the TV and give them choice in how that happens. And it ends up with me turning off the TV and them disappointed in this boundary. Will they still know that I love them? Will they still feel loved is something that comes up a lot in our village and you know, you're a dad of 2 and so this is probably your everyday life absolutely let's chat about that what comes up for you as a dad when you're setting and holding boundaries with your babes and when they're disappointed about the boundary.


00:33:38    Xavier:  

Yeah actually I'm going to be honest, if I have fully surrendered to the to the idea that it is a need, it is a must, like as much as they need love they also need structure and you know it's like and they need that within each partner like they need your flow and they need your structure they need your own expression of the masculine energy and they need your own expression of the feminine like they need me showing up in full love and like hugging and all the ways I am ready to express love, as you know embodying my feminine energy and they also need me in my structure in the masculine holding space and setting guidelines they need that you know, so and I also understand that they're not going to love all of it. Especially when it comes to it's like especially for women they have a hard time with their the masculine energy that comes with setting boundaries because it is in its in essence, it is a paradigm of masculine energy, which is like it happens this way, setting structures, setting kind of rules and what came up for me initially because my partner she is so loving and she, and my first born is a boy. And we've had, we have 2 under 2 and the two, it's like we've had two C-sections. So after the second C-section she needed time to recover but he is still under two. So he's still very clingy. He still needs her a lot. So he was jumping all over her and she needed that space because she was healing right and she was letting it happen and they're healing was taking so much and I could see that she was such in pain because she wanted to be there for him, but just physically couldn't have him sometimes because he's a big boy and he's going to touch her wound and all those things. So it was hard for her to actually lean into that and then at some point I was like, it is also very necessary and needed for him to see that. So it's like diving and accepting the truth that they are not going to like it, but they need it. They are not going to like it all the time, but they need it and it's like you can feel within your heart when you come from a place of Love or when you come from a place of like, that is not balanced. You know, I will never assume that a parent sometimes want to hurt but just like you come from a place that is ungrounded and I feel like it is, sorry?


00:36:29  Alyssa:

I think usually from a place of fear and like that desire to control.


00:36:34    Xavier:  

Exactly and the way I go around it. Honestly is I blow into the fire. You know the fire of love and I make sure I blow it too. Like it is very necessary for me to have a hug because right now he doesn't speak, right now he doesn't understand much, he is just 18 months. This is really important for me to have a moment where after I've been, after I've set the boundary the come and hug him after that that he know that okay. We are friends here and I'm not in business. I'm not down to hurt you. I'm not here to hurt you. It is very important for me to have that conversation after for them to understand especially when you begin to have kids that talk that understand things and really not to believe that they are just those tiny humans and they don't have any psyche. They cannot understand all cognize things. It just those conversations for me went missing in my childhood, you know, like the bridges like this is happening for this. This is happening for this. So it's very important for you to see this, and those are bridges, and growing up for me. I didn't have those bridges. So sometimes I can find myself. I go overboard a lot, you know, and I've just made peace with that. But the very thing that I've made peace with the most important thing for me is to be there after. Meaning, you felt this, what did you experience? I'm sorry for that, this is what I meant. It is so crucial for me right now. But in the action of it, I am really okay. Like I know I'm going to come from a loving place. If I turn off the TV you are disappointed. It's okay for now and then we're going to have that completion conversation and I really lean into it at this moment. This is where I am, it's like I really made peace with that and my question to all the parents here is what meaning have you made about yourself if you were to put boundaries. Like really to question all those and this is how you work with your shadows and by shadows. I'm talking about the parts of you that you disowned because as you are willing not to show up the way your parents showed up for you. You are resisting that sometimes it gets you to feed that energy. Sometimes you get to actually precisely show up the same way. You are trying to avoid with your kids because you are resisting that you know, and my question would be really like what is coming up for you when you're about setting boundaries. What meaning do you make about yourself, you know and really question that and really question that all the way down until you see that you've made how you show up in the relationship, you're bigger than who you are. And you are really all, you are really the space where all of this is happening and you get to choose at every, like as soon as you uncover all those biases that you created, all those stories that you created about setting boundaries, about being assertive about being authoritative with the kids. What is your own relationship with authority? Because you get to be the authority in the house. You have to be the authority in the house. What is, what are all the stories that you created with it? And are they true? It is very important to question all of them. It is very important to uncover at least all of them, so that you can know when they are being activated and so that you can see when they are being activated for the right reason or and because very often we show up in parenting as the rebellious kid. We show up in parenting as a rebellious kid to our own parenting that we received instead of showing up has a lover to those tiny humans that we have here. So what am I showing up as? Am I just resisting my own parenting here? Or am I being fully loving of those humans and you have the answers when you are able to dive in there to ask yourself. What is going on right here within me? You're gonna know you're gonna be like, oh, oh, this is what's going on. Just trying to rebel against my own dad here. Yeah, I can I can feel my dad in my head or my mom in my head and I'm rebelling against what she did even though there is some level of truth in what she did but you put it all in the garbage because you don't want to show up as she did and because of that that truth that was there in her expression that she probably didn't know how to bring up in a loving and balanced way. You are not passing it down to your kids. So you are giving them your own version of empowerment just because you show up in rebellion to your own parenting. To me the best way to really question, to really sit with yourself. What was really going on with within me then? You know and you will uncover your truth. 


00:41:47    Alyssa: 

It's so true. I grew up in a "Because I Said So" household where it was, you know that one? And so that TV was going off because I said so or whatever it was because I said so and I have forever my whole life been the kid with my hand in the air saying but why? But why? I want to learn more about why and you know in direct response to "because I said so" and so I found myself at the beginning of my journey with tiny humans over explaining right where I was like, oh, I will make sure that it's not just a "Because I Said So" response we will always be co-creating, and when I'm setting a boundary, I'll make sure they know exactly why and they'll feel good about it when I enforce it and all the and like it was a total pendulum swing right? I was doing this just as you were describing the same imbalance was happening just on it in reaction to my lack of healing there right? And so as I started to heal my wound there I could find that common ground and be like ooh you know what? I can both provide structure and boundaries and rules for them and provide the emotional support of like, yeah. I know what it feels like to be disappointed and think that's really when I look back, that's what I wish I had. I love that I had the structure of like they were going to set and hold boundaries. What was lacking for me was the yeah. I know what it feels like to be disappointed too, I'm here with you. It's okay to feel disappointed. 


00:43:24    Xavier:  

Yeah. That's so necessary. 


00:43:27    Alyssa:

And so that's the part that I want to bring in. You know, but like it takes you're so right. It takes that healing to be able to even see like what's my reaction here all about? What am I trying to do? 


00:43:37    Xavier:  

Absolutely. So I really love that and it is very important to know to question all the unconscious reactions. It's really important to make your reaction there be very conscious. So my invitation for all the parents that are listening to all of this is to become both the observer of the action and observe yourself when you are setting the boundary when you are because it's so easy to get triggered by your kids as well. You know, it's just like so crazy even for myself. I'll hear my son scream and he is hypersensitive. Like I used to be, but back home I wasn't allowed to be, so like over expressive and stuff. So I shut that out of myself down back then and when he like he often screams I'm like I get triggered I'm like stop it, right? And it's because within me it's also activated and it's a part of me that I had to shut down and it's really necessary to become conscious and in the beginning for me I was over reactive, you know, it's just like I was showing up as the oppressive Dad, that was actually getting him to shut down the tiny bit of his sensitivity and then he caught up it was like when I started the same questions when I started questioning it, that questioning it, what is really happening for me when he begins to scream? And then I was like, I remembered one memory of me being just asked to shut up so many times. So it's just like in those, in asserting those boundaries. It is very necessary to become conscious, or to at least observe the unconscious things because we often happen to lose it and we just turn off the TV and enough. Or all the moments where you just become an archetype of like very authoritative like all the way to the end of just like question what is going on within you there. And very often you will find that there is an unhealed part of you there and as you allow yourself to navigate better your emotions in those moments your kids shift immediately. It is magical how it has happened for me because there is projection is always or triggers, they are always a two-way street. They are only ever going to trigger something that was in you to begin with and when you read when you heal that aspect there's nothing to be triggered anymore. And then they self-regulate has well. 


00:46:13    Alyssa: 

Yeah, oh my gosh. I feel like I could talk to you forever. Like yes, all of it. Yes. I love it. Xavier, if people want to connect with you or continue to learn from you. Where can they find you.  


00:46:26    Xavier:  

I'm mostly active on Instagram and my website, Xavier Dagba on Instagram, that's my website. Those are the spaces where I'm the most present and I just love creating on Instagram and I love the community ther. So yeah, thank you so much. 


00:46:47    Alyssa: 

Yeah, and do you you offer coaching? Do you have, what other services if people were interested in paying for your services and diving deeper? What do you offer? 


00:46:56    Xavier:  

I offer coaching, I offer group coaching and I've been working on a class in the last few months. It is emotional sovereignty that I'm working on right now because for my, I was never taught how to handle properly my emotions, especially the ugly ones like anger, guilt, shame, fear. Like I was never taught how to navigate them. So I went through a whole part of my early adulthood and even you know, when I was 20, I'm 31 now up till up to 26, 27, I was like emotionally numb because I grew up as a very sensitive guy but in the environment, it was just not allowed. Like what would, what did it even mean for a guy, for a man to be sensitive. And for a lot of people they have an emotional story that they are working on just like untangling and for me mental health is really emotional health and as we learned how to navigate and to receive our emotions with grace. There is an avenue of peace that opens up in life in general. So that's what I'm working on but for now, I work in group and one-on-one. That's what I do for now. 


00:48:23    Alyssa: 

I'm so excited about your course too, that's awesome. Keep me posted. 


00:48:27    Xavier:  

I will do.


00:48:28    Alyssa:

Xavier, thank you for hanging out with me, and I'm so glad that you're raising humans. 


00:48:34    Xavier:  

I am so glad, I am challenged, I am all the, like I feel it all honestly and if there's somebody out there if there's a parent out there that is thinking it's easier for somebody else. I'm just sending you so much love we are in the same boat and some days I shame myself, some days I guilt myself, some days I feel like I'm a super dad and it's just like it's all of it. So I want to honor all the parents that I hear. Like teaching and like teaching the kids for the next generation and as you are working on your self, cleaning up your act. This is how we create a more beautiful tomorrow. So I want to send you like I assume that if somebody is here in your community, they want better for their kid and we are only going to get that heavily allow better for ourselves in the process. So I want to send you so much love in that journey as well. 


00:49:30    Alyssa:

Thank you. That's gorgeous. Thank you so much for hanging out with me. 


00:49:34    Xavier: 

Thank you so much. I love this. I love this. Thank you. 


00:49:38  Alyssa:

Thanks for tuning in to Voices of Your Village. Check out the transcript at Did you know that we have a special community over on Instagram hanging out every day with more free content? Come join us at Take a screenshot of you tuning in, share it on the gram and tag to let me know your key takeaway. If you're digging this podcast, make sure to subscribe so you don't miss an episode. We love collaborating with you to raise emotionally intelligent humans.


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