Updated: Jul 13, 2022
What are boundaries
So what are boundaries when it refers to human interations?
Boundaries are delimitations, limiting of behaviour and actions of others. Setting boundaries means we set connecting points as rules to direct a relationship and keep it healthy.
'But How do I do that?' I can almost hear you asking
Well, I am going to give you some insight in the simplest possible way I can. Keep reading and then feel free to share with friends, comment or give suggestions, critique or share your own thoughts.
We all want better relationships with siblings, spouses, children, friends, parents and coworkers; being able to understant what boundaries are and how to set them is a big step into achieving this.
You need to make people understand that this is all you’re willing to accept and be clear about it.
Everyone needs boundaries from babies, toddlers, tweenies, teenagers and adults.
Understand why you don’t set boundaries
Very rarely people set bounaries on every relationship they have and this is mainly due to a lack of understanding of the purpose of setting bounaries.
There are a few compeling reasons that can prevent us from setting boundaries and we need to dismistify them so that we can take the first steps into setting those much needed boundaries. I've picked the 2 reasons I believe to be the more relevant (as well as the reasons not to validate them) the ones that if you are able to overcome then setting boundaries will become second nature to you, and they are as follows:
We don’t set boundaries because we’d rather feel resentful that guilty. Let me tell you a secret, You don’t have to feel either. Boundaries do not mean that you are selfish
There’s a belief that boundaries hurt people’s feelings and maybe it’s true but, sometimes we have to hurt people’s feelings in order to prevent harm in a relationship
The root of a lot of anger issues is a lack of boundaries that lead to frustration and resentment. You need to take care of your emotional state and having boundaries in your relationships can help. That doesn’t mean you can be disrespectful but if someone asks you a question that you don’t want to answer you don’t have to do it just because you think it’s the polite thing to do. You should instead let them know, politely, you’d rather not talk about it.
People can ask you whatever they want, it’s up to you if you want to answer their questions or do what they ask or not- set boundaries and learn to say no.
Remember, you don’t have to be rude about it either.
Everyone is allowed to exercise their full rights and freedom. Meaning you don’t have to resent people for asking whatever they want to but you also don’t have to do anything you don’t want to do.
Again. Learn to say No.
Boundaries are not only valid for third party, You also need to set boundaries for yourself,for how you feel and think about yourself and your actions . A set of simple boundaries to set for yourself can be:
Don’t overly blame and shame yourself
Learn to move on
Own your mistake
And most importantly move on
See, the point is...
A boundary is an assertion of my choice based on your choice - it is not an ultimatum. It is, however, saying to the other person 'this is what you choose to do, this is what I choose to do'. After all 'your freedom ends where mine begins'.
A Boundary is not a requirement that someone else changes their behaviour, it is accepting it, but deciding and making it clear to them that if you do this I’m going to do that
In other words it’s saying to the other person:
You can Do whatever you want but I don’t have to put up with it.
And remembering that You are allowed to remove yourself from any situation you do not feel comfortable with or in.