How to Set Positive Boundaries

Respect yourself and others by maintaining healthy boundaries.

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Healthy boundaries define a person's safety and provide them with control over their life. As everyone has different needs and comfort levels, they may look different for each person, according to Medical News Today

That’s because each person’s  situation, relationship type, and social context influence how they set boundaries. Setting healthy boundaries begins with each person understanding their values and what matters the most to them. Having healthy boundaries may provide many benefits. These include avoiding burnout, and enhancing your emotional wellbeing, as well as boosting self-esteem, according to WebMD, . 

Just remember, though, that this process requires practice and dedication over time. After setting your boundaries, it’s helpful to review these periodically to remain relevant to your life circumstances. Here are three tips on how to set healthy boundaries.

Identify your boundaries
The way you set your personal boundaries reflects your attitude toward taking responsibility for your life, reported Forbes. Taking the time to think about your wants and needs in different situations will help you understand how your values influence boundary-setting. Once you have taken inventory of your values, needs, and wants, use that knowledge to establish clear boundaries that respect yourself and those around you.

Communicate your boundaries
Once you have identified your boundaries, it is important to communicate them effectively. Honesty and respect play a key role when communicating boundaries, according to Psych Central. Express your ideas in an open and straightforward manner. Speak up for yourself so others can hear and respect your needs. Others can only begin to respect your boundaries if you’ve communicated them clearly in the first place. Is your voice heard? 

Keeping communication positive will help ensure successful boundary-setting in any situation. So try expressing yourself in a way that others can understand. Additionally, take a step back if tensions arise during a conversation about setting boundaries. Allow yourself or the other person to cool down before resuming the conversation. This will increase the chances of finding mutually acceptable solutions to issues between you and another individual regarding boundary-setting.

Practice boundary-setting
When learning how to set healthy boundaries, it is essential to learn how to say “no,” according to Psychology Today. A healthy relationship with yourself and others depends on it. Saying yes to everything and not setting boundaries can lead to stress, overwhelm, and burnout. You’re establishing what you do and do not stand for by saying no.  It is important to understand what you deem acceptable and unacceptable, setting limits that reflect those standards. 

If you feel that someone has crossed your boundaries, remind them. If the situation persists, remove yourself from it respectfully. You deserve more than surround yourself with people who don’t value your values. 

Ultimately, having clear boundaries helps create healthier relationships with yourself and those around you. You're protecting your personal rights by creating an atmosphere of mutual respect and understanding.

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