6 Tips For Setting Boundaries With Others
Personal boundaries are limits and rules we set for ourselves when it comes to our relationships with others. Whether we are parenting, supporting partners or friends, or dealing with work, we always faced with setting limits. Boundaries can be a complicated journey to navigate. Setting healthy boundaries can help one avoid being in uncomfortable situations. Setting boundaries also allows us to communicate with people in our lives to take responsibility for themselves, hopefully encouraging mutual understanding and growth.
The first step to setting boundaries is being able to communicate your perspective with others. Of course this does not mean that our perspective and stories are always true. When it comes to a healthy relationships, it is important to note that our views and feelings are valid and are just as important and the other person’s. Communication is such an empowering tool to help one in clearly convey boundary issues and how it is affecting us.
Here are some tips to consider when setting boundaries with others:
1. Know what’s important to you:
Everyone is different when it comes to limits. Therefore, it is important to know our personal values. Understand what you value and protect it. This about what message you want to convey to the other person. Practice how you will say it to help you feel more confident. Example: If alone time is valuable to you, then setting stricter limits on social outings with others.
2. Be straight forward and don’t beat around the bush:
It’s important to be assertive and say it like you mean it without ambiguity. It’s okay to be assertive but avoid yelling, silent treatments, or putting others down. Your message will be better received if you are respectful. Example: This is a good time to say “no” in a respective way without feeling like you must explain your whole life story of why you cannot participate.
3. Pay attention to the light at the end of tunnel:
Pay attention if you are always the one giving or taking because that might be an issue. There will be times where you take more than you give and other days where you give more than you take. Think about the long-term perspective of the relationship. You never have to compromise but when appropriate, listen and consider then other person’s needs and feelings.
4. Pay attention to your feelings:
If you are feeling uncomfortable and resentful, don’t dismiss it. A lot of times when one is experiencing feelings of resentment, it usually means that one has feelings of being taken advantage of. Your emotions are generally usually communicating something to you, pay attention! Keep out opinions and thoughts of others that do not align with your values but also at the same time allowing new thoughts through critical thinking.
5. Respect yourself:
Are you putting other people’s needs before your own? Do you care more about being liked by others? The same way you respect others, show that same respect to yourself because you are just as important. In doing so, you become confident and others know exactly what to expect from you.
6. Respect others:
Make sure your behavior is not at the expense of other people and is not self-serving for that purpose. Be sure to consider what is fair for everyone depending on the environment and the relationship. Give-and-take is part of a healthy relationship. Example: make eye contact and use a firm tone of voice (not too loud and not too quiet).
At the end of the day, boundaries allow us to communicate a clear message that we are in charge of our own life and can authentically express who we are and what is important to us. When things aren’t in our best interest, we set boundaries. What do boundaries mean to you and your life?