Set Better, Healthier Boundaries to Improve Your Life - Deepstash
Set Better, Healthier Boundaries to Improve Your Life

Set Better, Healthier Boundaries to Improve Your Life

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What Are Boundaries

What Are Boundaries

“A boundary is a limit or space between you and the other person; a clear place where you begin and the other person ends . . . The purpose of setting a healthy boundary is, of course, to protect and take good care of you” (n.d.).-- IPFW/Parkview Student Assistance Program

Basically it establishes what and up to what extent you're willing to accept from other people, and what other people can expect from you.

Why is it important?

  • Boundaries are a crucial component of self-care
  • They are essential for maintaining healthy relationships with others.
  • A lack of boundaries invites a lack of respect.


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Are Your Boundaries Rigid, Loose Or Healthy?

Are Your Boundaries Rigid, Loose Or Healthy?

Boundaries can take many forms ranging from being rigid and strict to almost nonexistent.

People with more rigid boundaries, can come off as detached. Their boundaries can be seen as a way to avoid close relationships and keep others at a distance

Those with more loose boundaries, can be seen as being too involved with others’ problems. They tend to overshare personal information. Because they seek to please others for fear of rejection they find it difficult to say “no” and are often seen as pushovers


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A Person With Healthy  Boundaries

A Person With Healthy Boundaries

  • Unlike the other 2, people with healthy boundaries can share some personal information to give a sense of familiarity but they know to limit it to whats appropriate.
  • They understand their personal needs and wants and know how to communicate them.
  • With defined individuality they are clear on what they will and will not hold themselves responsible for.
  • Though they value their own opinion but they also know how to take 'no' for an answer.

For many of us our boundaries take on different forms depending on the situation. Your boundaries at work might be rigid but almost non-existent at home.


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The Different Types Of Boundaries And What They Look Like

The Different Types Of Boundaries And What They Look Like

A. Physical: Your personal space, privacy, and body. “Don’t get so close to me.” “Don’t enter my room without asking.”

B. Sexual. Your expectations concerning intimacy. “We need to use contraception if we’re going to start sleeping together.”

C. Intellectual: Boundaries concerning your thoughts and beliefs. When someone dismisses another person’s ideas and opinions, you can say that his intellectual boundaries are not respected. "It's ok to disagree"

D. Emotional: Your boundaries concerning your feelings. "I'm not comfortable talking about our family business"


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The Different Types Of Boundaries ..continued

The Different Types Of Boundaries ..continued

E. Financial: Your guidelines for lending, giving or donating money. "I can have dinner with you, but let's go Dutch." "Don't use my credit card to buy your makeup."

F. Time: When and how much time you can spare. “I can only stay for an hour.” “Do you have time to help me figure this out?”

G. Ethical: Your ethical guidelines that ought to govern your relationships “I just can’t lie for you. I’m sorry.”

H. Spiritual: Defines your beliefs and your place in the scheme of things “I’m not okay with you insulting my faith just because you don’t share my beliefs.”


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Benefits Of Having Healthy Boundaries

Benefits Of Having Healthy Boundaries

1. You develop empathy and compassion for others and recognize their limitations.

2. You feel less resentment towards people when your requests arent met because you understand that just like you they have boundaries too.

3. You gain a sense of inner peace and you feel empowered when are able to resist the pressures from people who keep wanting more than what you can give.

4. You have ample time and energy for self care and to attend to the things that matter most to YOU, not to others.

5. By not setting your own needs aside to cater to the needs of others first, you gain a sense of self-respect.


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Benefits Of Having Healthy Boundaries

Benefits Of Having Healthy Boundaries

6. Boundaries can inspire improved communication. Your setting of ground rules and showing others where you stand—can inspire them to do the same.

7. As you build healthier boundaries, your self-esteem goes up as well. You will see that your value is not dependent on how useful you are to others.

8. And because of this, you can make decisions for yourself, based on what you think is best for you

8. Clearer boundaries that reflect who you are as a person and what you value can mean less room for misunderstandings and can result to others having a better understanding and greater acceptance of you.


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Benefits Of Having Healthy Boundaries

9. Career-wise healthy boundaries can help you avoid burnout and enables you to stay in the profession longer. A more fulfilling professional life means more time and attention for your personal life.

10. Having clear boundaries means less stress, less financial burdens, less wasted time, and less relationship issues

11. Healthy boundaries can reduce the risk of health problems like mental distress, stomach ulcers and so on.


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How To Set And Maintain Healthy Boundaries

1. Self-reflection: Take time to understand why a certain something (personal space, time alone, get-togethers with friends) is important to you and how you will benefit from it.

2. If you don’t have many boundaries in place yet, build your additions slowly. Introducing them all at once might overwhelm you and those around you. Doing so also gives you time to assess whether it’s heading in the right direction or if it needs some tweaking.

3. Set them early

By setting boundaries and expectations from the very beginning, everyone knows where they stand from the get go-conficts can be avoided.


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How To Set And Maintain Healthy Boundaries

Be consistent and steady

This helps to reinforce your original thresholds and beliefs, and ensures those lines remain clearly established.

Loosening those boundaries from time to time can lead to confusion for you and for those around you.

Feel free to add extras

In some aspects of our lives, there are boundaries already in place — such as in the workplace. Consider these the minimum. It’s okay to add your own.

Austrian researchersTrusted Source found that employees who introduced personal workplace boundaries felt more empowered


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How To Set And Maintain Healthy Boundaries

Communication is key to maintaining healthy boundaries especially if someone consistently oversteps your boundaries.

“Say ‘no’ simply but firmly to something you do not want to do. Do not feel that you need to explain” (Kairns, 1992). Not overexplaining is a crucial aspect of setting boundaries. This will prevent a would-be interloper from finding a loophole where they can wiggle their way in. This says that you and only you have the right to determine what you do and do not want to do and they have to be ok with that.


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How To Set And Maintain Healthy Boundaries

Keep the focus on yourself.

Instead of saying “You have to stop bothering me after work”, say it like “I need some time to myself when I get back from work.”

Set consequences

There are times in which “It is impossible to set boundaries withou consequences” (IPFW/Parkview Student Assistance Program, n.d.) State explicitly why these boundaries are important or what will happen if they are violated.

"You need to stop using me like a tool or we dont have to see each other again."

Declare only consequences that you're willing to follow through on, or else the boundaries will not be effective.


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Jack of all people-related trades, master of none. Majored in Psychology, Customer Service Assoc for a few Years, HR Officer for 4, Manager and ESL Teacher for over 11 yrs now, an artist since birth.


Blurred boundaries at home and at work are associated with unhealthy lifestyle,unhappiness, which may lead to conflicts and eventually family breakdown.

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