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Setting healthy boundaries

Setting Healthy boundaries

Setting boundaries is an essential step in helping you maintain your mental health and gain the safety, space, and respect you need. It’s also known as personal rules or limitations that you should create. When you set boundaries, you’ll guide other people on how to behave towards you. By drawing the line, you can protect yourself from being taken advantage of by others and ensure others meet your needs. In this article, we’ll highlight why you should be setting boundaries and how to set boundaries for other people to ensure others respect your space, body, and you.’

What should you be setting boundaries for?

You should set boundaries for your personal space, emotions, thoughts, time, energy, culture, and ethics. It will allow you to take charge of your life so that other people know where to stop. By doing so, you can ensure to have healthier relationships with people you can trust. You can get rid of being emotionally drained and the feeling of being invaded by setting boundaries for your personal space, etc.

Guidelines for setting boundaries

When setting boundaries, you have to follow a set of personal guidelines to be successful. It depends on your beliefs and upbringing, so you need to know where to draw the line. Be realistic and determine what your rules will be when it comes to your boundaries. Other people should still be able to reach out to you while being comfortable within your limits.

Before you get started, it’s essential to determine your needs and rights. It’ll help you to set a healthy boundary if you think about it carefully. Not only can you keep your personal space safe, but it will also give you peace of mind. Depending on your orientation, you can shape your boundaries from them.

1. Know Your Basic Rights

– Say no without the guilt feeling
You can say no to anything you don’t like nor want to do. No one can pressure you into saying yes to something you don’t want to do. You have the freedom to vocalize your no at any time. However, this does not mean being rude/ disrespectful towards parents/ teachers. Here, I meant you can say clear no if your friends are pressurizing you to do an activity when you clearly don’t want to.

– Be treated with respect
All human beings deserve respect– no exceptions. So that includes you too. You should not only give respect to every person you come across, but you should be treated with it as well.

– Your needs have the same importance as others
Sometimes your needs and someone else’s needs don’t align. In this case, it’s best to part ways and have your needs met by another person or by yourself.

– Accept your mistakes and failures
No one on the planet is perfect. No one. Don’t expect perfection from yourself and don’t expect it from others. Everyone will mess up now and then.

Don’t have to meet unrealistic expectations
Remember, you’re not required to meet someone else’s expectations, ever.

2. Consider Your Values

Setting boundaries includes considering your values. It’s one of the reasons why you want to put limitations to protect yourself from others. Your values play a big role in determining your limits. It’s best to vocalize when you feel challenged or threatened. That will be the basis of your boundaries.

Once you determine what makes you tick, you’ll know where to draw the boundaries. It’s one of the basic things that you need to consider. That way, you don’t have to wait until someone crosses the line. You can already leave or stop before it happens.

How to Set Boundaries Around You

1. You Need to be Firm

Be firm when setting boundaries. Being firm will help you to avoid considering something that will end up bad for you. Drawing boundaries means that you have to decide when you should stop. If you don’t, you’ll end up feeling uncomfortable, violated, or upset.

When you have to say no, make sure to be firm about it every time– no exceptions. That way, you can avoid leading someone to believe that it’s alright sometimes. Don’t feel guilty about it because you can’t always say yes to everyone or everything, every time. It’s not good for your well-being, and you don’t want to feel exhausted, hurt, or provoked all the time.

For example, instead of saying “I might have to leave early.” You can say, “I can stay for only one hour.”

2. Become Assertive

Use the “I” statement to show your confidence while setting boundaries.

For example, you might tell your friend or anyone at your age who has different opinions than yours. “It’s okay if you don’t agree with me. I respect your perspective even though I do not agree with you!”

3. Say No When Needed

Avoid saying yes to everything and learn how to say no. It’ll help you avoid compromising yourself when you need to do other things. There are situations when you have to say no. You don’t have to explain further, and there’s no need to feel guilty about it.

If a friend from school asks you something very personal, you can go ahead and say no. There’s nothing wrong with saying no if you’re uncomfortable with the situation. You don’t have to do what others should be doing themselves all the time.

You can reply, “please don’t talk to me in that tone. This is not a topic I want to discuss right now. I don’t want you commenting about my personal issues.”

Benefits of Setting Boundaries

1. Improves Self-Esteem

Boundaries will improve your self-esteem because you know your limits. It can also make your relationships better. You can be more open to your loved ones and grow closer together. It’ll teach others to respect your space and avoid crossing the line.

2. It Can Be Flexible

Boundaries can be flexible to make adjustments over time as there’s more trust in your relationships.You can still have fun with boundaries in place. Learn how to set your limits so you can enjoy yourself and have others enjoy your presence as well.

3. Conserve Emotional Energy

Conserve your emotional energy to avoid feeling drained all the time. By setting boundaries, you can minimize wasting emotional energy. If you don’t feel like doing something for a friend, you don’t have to do it.

4. Safe Space to Grow

Being vulnerable is not always a bad thing. It’ll allow other people to know you better. By setting boundaries, you may appear vulnerable to someone who doesn’t know you well. But if the person cares about you, they’ll make sure to avoid crossing the line.

Setting boundaries will help you to feel more in control of your life. It may seem simple, but not everyone is confident in drawing their boundaries. Some may feel guilty about it, but by being firm about it, you can successfully manage it. If you want to have total control of your life and emotions, setting boundaries will help you to be a happy person.

Mugdha Chandorkar
School Counselor