Creating Healthy Boundaries

Setting strong, clear boundaries is necessary to create healthy relationships. What is a boundary and why do we need them? A boundary is a line in the sand that serves to protect us as it provides an energetic barrier between us and an outside force. Boundaries are guidelines, rules or limits that a person creates to identify for themselves what are reasonable, safe and permissible ways for other people to behave around them and how they will respond when someone steps outside
those limits. Personal boundaries help you decide what types of communication, behavior, and interactions are acceptable, and what aren’t.

We can easily recognize a physical boundary if we see a sign on a door that says “Stay out!”. An energetic and emotional boundary can be set through our words that we communicate to others to let people know what is ok with us and what isn’t. We teach other people how we wish to be treated by communicating our boundaries to them.

When you feel anger or resentment or find yourself complaining, you probably need to set a boundary. Listen to yourself, determine what you need to do or say, then communicate assertively.

If you were taught to be a people pleaser, you may not have learned how to establish healthy boundaries. The people pleaser in you may find it difficult to say no because you are fearful of being disliked or rejected. Saying yes to everyone else is another way to say no to yourself. You are the one who suffers through sacrificing your own needs and dreams for others. At some point a healthy sense of self needs to be established and strong boundaries put in place.

If you are someone who has had poor boundaries and then you set boundaries in place with the people in your life, you may find that others respond poorly to your new boundaries. That is because they are used to walking all over you and now they can’t. Remember, you are not responsible for how others react to your new boundaries. Let them be upset.

If you set a boundary with someone and they cannot respect that boundary, then you may be dealing with a toxic person. You may need to reinforce the boundary and if they still are unable to honor your boundary, you have the option of removing yourself from that relationship. Healthy people respect each other’s boundaries.

Once you learn how to express your needs, speak your truth, lay down the law for what works for you and what doesn’t and especially learn to say “no”, you will find that others will begin to respect you. And you will have more respect for yourself.

Setting boundaries is you taking care of yourself. You are the most important person in your life and your relationship with your Self is the most important relationship you will ever have. Every other relationship in your life is an extension of your relationship with you. Taking care of you is the best thing you can ever do because once that self-love and self-trust is there, you will flourish.

Exericise:

Take an inventory of every important person in your life and look to see where you can create better healthier boundaries within the relationship.

What needs do you have that you are not expressing?

What doesn’t feel good to you that you have been tolerating?

What do you want to put in place that is not there?