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10 Way to Build and Preserve Better Boundaries

Name your limits

You can’t set good boundaries if you’re unsure of where your limits are.

Identify what you can permit and accept and what makes you feel uncomfortable or stressed.

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IDEA EXTRACTED FROM:

10 Way to Build and Preserve Better Boundaries

10 Way to Build and Preserve Better Boundaries

https://psychcentral.com/lib/10-way-to-build-and-preserve-better-boundaries/

psychcentral.com

10

Key Ideas

Name your limits

You can’t set good boundaries if you’re unsure of where your limits are.

Identify what you can permit and accept and what makes you feel uncomfortable or stressed.

Tune into your feelings

There are two key feelings that are red flags that you are letting go of your boundaries.

  • Discomfort. Ask yourself what is causing the discomfort.
  • Resentment. Resentment usually comes from being taken advantage of or not appreciated.

Be direct

With some people, maintaining healthy boundaries doesn’t require a direct and clear-cut dialogue.

There are other times you might need to be frank, such as with those who have a different personality or cultural background.

Give yourself permission

We might fear the other person’s response if we set and enforce our boundaries.

Boundaries aren’t just a sign of a healthy relationship; they’re a sign of self-respect. Give yourself permission to set boundaries.

Practice self-awareness

If you notice yourself slipping and not sustaining your boundaries, ask yourself what's changed. Find out what you do have control over and what you are going to do about it.

Consider your past and present

Consider how you were raised along with your role in your family. These can become additional obstacles in setting and preserving boundaries.

Is there a healthy give and take with the people you surround yourself with?

Make self-care a priority

Putting yourself first gives you the energy, peace of mind and positive outlook to be more present with others and be there for them. 

Seek support

If you’re having a hard time with boundaries, seek some support: a support group, church, counseling, coaching or good friends.

Be assertive

It’s important to communicate with the other person when they’ve crossed a boundary.

Let the other person know what in particular is bothersome to you. Do it respectfully and work together to address it.

Start small

Communicating your boundaries takes practice.

Start with a small boundary that isn’t threatening to you, and then incrementally increase to more challenging boundaries.

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NO boundaries = little self-esteem

The first step to change is admitting this.

Your boundaries are your values. Boundaries are representative of how much or little you respect yourself. 

Choose your core values

You must make your boundaries about you.

Once you get clear about what matters most to you, then you can take the bigger step of communicating that to the others.

You can't change others

You are not responsible for what they say, their reactions or for the daily choices they make.

Since you can't change other people, change how you deal with them. They may be motivated to change if their old ways no longer work.

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Defining Boundaries

The word “boundary” can leave the impression of separation.

But boundaries are actually connecting points since they provide healthy rules for navigating relationships, intimate or profess...

The benefits of boundaries
  • Boundaries improve our relationships and self-esteem. They protect relationships from becoming unsafe.
  • Boundaries can be flexible. It’s good to think about them occasionally and reassess them.
  • Boundaries allow us to conserve our emotional energy. Without them, self-esteem and identity can be affected, and you can build resentment toward others.
  • Boundaries give us space to grow and be vulnerable. 
Determine your borders

Our boundaries are shaped by

  • our heritage or culture
  • the region we live in or come from
  • whether we’re introverted, extroverted, or somewhere in between
  • our life experiences
  • our family dynamics
Boundaries are a deeply personal choice and vary from person to person. You can investigate and define your boundaries with self-reflection.

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Accept Your Emotions

Allow yourself to feel your feelings, so you don’t spend more energy avoiding them than you would on feeling them. This way you can focus on the situation, fully experience the feelings and...

Take Daily Risks

Structure and routine are important, but in excess, they may stop you from growing. Taking certain risks can be healthy and rewarding.

Challenge yourself to take a risk each day, do something new or differently, anything that pushes you out of your comfort zone.

Live In The Present

Mental health tends to deteriorate when we obsess over past happenings instead of taking responsibility in what we’re doing or creating in the now.

Live in the present without hyper-focusing on the future or the past.

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Verbal violations
  • Not allowing you to speak or be heard.
  • Yelling at you.
  • Saying things that are derogatory about your integrity and character.
  • Gossiping about you.
Psychological/emotional boundary violations
  • Preying upon your sense of self and self-esteem
  • Using what you’ve told them in confidence against you
  • Lying to you
  • Criticizing you
  • Manipulating you
  • Mocking you
  • Making demands of your time
  • Bullying you
  • Lording a superior attitude over you
Physical violations
  • Moving into your personal space
  • Touching you without permission
  • Being inappropriate or too familiar towards you
  • Violating your privacy
  • Damaging or destroying your personal property
  • Threatening you with physical harm

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Name your feelings

Emotions like overwhelm, anger, and frustration may indicate that others are intruding on your personal time or space.

Instead of pushing the feelings away, try understanding them. It ...

Prepare your well-being disclaimer

Start conversations about boundaries with a disclaimer to set the stage for a compassionate, permissive discussion.

Share your resolution to set boundaries. Explain why it’s important to you and how you believe it will benefit you.

When others set boundaries

People who have trouble setting boundaries usually have trouble responding to boundaries set by others.

Instead of feeling dismissed, angry, or rejected when friends or lovers put limits on your interactions, respond with “I value your honesty” or “I appreciate you sharing that with me”—even if the boundary was difficult to hear.

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You Have A Boundary Issue If…
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  • you feel like you’re constantly having to “save” people close to you and fix their problems all the ...
Personal Boundaries

Having healthy personal boundaries means taking responsibility for your own actions and emotions, while NOT blaming others.

People with high self-esteem have strong personal boundaries. And practicing strong personal boundaries is one way to build self-esteem.

Poor Boundaries 

People who blame others for their own emotions and actions do so because they believe that if they constantly paint themselves as a victim, eventually someone will come to save them.

People who take the blame for other people’s emotions and actions are always looking to save someone.

Predictably, these two types of people are drawn strongly to one another, yet completely fail to meet each other's true need to feel loved. The real solution would be for both to take responsibility for their own problems.

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Decreasing Awkwardness
Decreasing Awkwardness
  • Find common interests and discuss them.
  • Encourage others to talk about what interests them.
  • Be gentle or help someone out, even if it is on a small thing.
Situations That Lead To Awkwardness
  • Walking into a room where you don't know any of the other people.
  • Being in a situation in which you don't know what you are supposed to do.
  • You are all talking amongst yourself and an unknown person approaches the group.
  • When a conversation does not go smoothly. 
  • Discomfort around food. 
  • Invading someone else's personal space—or having your own space invaded.
  • Not remembering someone or their name or not being remembered.
  • Been put in the spotlight or when others start talking about you while you are in the same room.
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