Tips for Setting Healthy Boundaries

by Audra
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Are you looking to set some personal limits? Ensuring you have some healthy boundaries in place is essential in helping you with personal and professional development while also supporting you to maintain stronger relationships with those you care about most.

However, knowing how to set and maintain healthy boundaries can be tough. However, it is important to remember that these boundaries are not strict rules, but more guidance on your mental and physical wellbeing. The right boundaries can transform your life, and we have taken a closer look at some of the best tips to help you.

What are healthy boundaries?

Before looking at some of the top tips to help you, we thought it was first important to look at what exactly healthy boundaries are. These are self-appointed limits that can be as rigid or as loose as you like but are designed to establish your identity and improve your relationships.

When you are putting yourself first, you will know when to take yourself out of a situation and improve your mental health. The right boundaries will also help you to conserve your emotional energy, boost your self-esteem, and keep you motivated to achieve your goals.

Effective boundaries can also help you to grow and open up to others about your struggles. For example, if you find arthritis is holding you back and preventing you from living your life as you like, you might find that it is significantly impacting your mood. Setting boundaries will give you the strength to talk to those closest to you.

Tips for setting healthy boundaries

Types of healthy boundaries

It is also important to understand the different types of healthy boundaries you can create. Typically, there are five main types:

  • Physical

These are boundaries related to your personal space, privacy, and body. For example, you might not be comfortable with public displays of affection from your partner.

  • Sexual

These types of boundaries refer to your sexual intimacy and the comments and touches that make you uncomfortable.

  • Intellectual

Intellectual boundaries relate to your own thoughts and beliefs and how you feel when they are dismissed by others.

  • Emotional

Your emotional boundaries refer to your feelings and how comfortable you are with sharing your emotions with your friends and family.

  • Financial

The final type of healthy boundaries is those that relate to your money. For example, how comfortable you are loaning money to friends or family.

Top tips for developing healthy boundaries

Now you know what emotional boundaries are and the five different types to choose from, it is time to start setting your own. However, knowing where to start can be tough. That is why to help you set and uphold your healthy boundaries, we have taken a closer look at some of the best tips.

     1) Understand each boundary

In order to be able to successfully set and maintain your healthy boundaries, you need to understand why they are important to you. That is why you should take the time to realize how and why they benefit you emotionally and improve your wellbeing.

Writing down each boundary and the benefits of each will help you to truly understand them. This is an important aspect of being able to maintain them, ensuring that you continue to uphold them no matter how difficult life might be.

Tips for Setting Healthy Boundaries

     2) Start small

If you have never set healthy boundaries before, it can seem like an overwhelming prospect. That is why you should focus on starting small, giving you the chance to see how it can positively impact your life.

Starting small also ensures that you are able to go at a pace that you are most comfortable with. Taking your time will also allow you to closely reflect on how they are performing and whether you should tweak them slightly to improve your wellbeing even further.

     3) Establish them early

While setting boundaries can be tough, it is even more challenging trying to put them in place when you already have existing relationships in place. The earlier you can set these boundaries, the easier they are to maintain.

Setting your healthy boundaries early will also ensure that everyone knows their limits and where they stand, minimizing the risk of hurting someone’s emotions or creating frustration and confusion.

     4) Be consistent

When it comes to establishing and maintaining your healthy boundaries, being consistent is essential. Letting things slide and not being firm on your limits will only result in confusion that significantly impacts your relationships.

Keeping things consistent will help you to further strengthen and reinforce your thresholds so that you can ensure your boundaries are clear.

     5) Establish a framework

Another important tip when it comes to maintaining healthy boundaries is to ensure that you have a clear framework in place to help you. One of the best ways to do this is to take a few hours alone each week to unwind and review how you are feeling.

Although this can be hard to do in the hustle and bustle of modern life, it is an essential part of keeping your mind focused.

     6) Be fluid

While boundaries are designed to set a clear precedence of your expectations, life is not a rigid process. That is why you should be willing to be fluid with your boundaries, amending them as your life changes.

You can also add or remove boundaries as needed, perhaps as you become closer with a partner or when you start a new job.

     7) Be aware of blurred boundaries

We live in a truly connected world, which is making communication incredibly easy. However, while social media are a fantastic tool, they also make it very easy for boundaries to become blurred.

Many individuals are worried that their friends or family are going to overshare something on social media that they do not want made public. That is why you should not be afraid to call out blurred boundaries, ensuring you are not distressed or worried about what your loved ones will share.

Tips for setting healthy boundaries

     8) Be clear

When it comes to healthy boundaries, the most important tip of them all is to be clear. Making sure individuals know what your boundaries are, and raising your concerns when they are crossed, will ensure that everyone understands your limits.

When raising your concerns, make sure that you are being firm, but not confrontational, particularly if it is the first time mentioning them.

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