A common misperception about personal boundaries is that keeping everyone in your life at arm’s length is the same as having strong, healthy boundaries—that you can't let others in if you want to be happy. This isn't exactly true.
Allowing others to get close to you (in a healthy way) is the true goal of boundary-setting. Proper boundaries allow you to have close relationships that respect the needs of all involved. They enable you to be independent and interdependent at the same time.
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When you continue to say yes to things that would be better addressed with a no, you might start to feel angry or resentful. It may seem as if others are taking advantage of you or that you are being expected to give too much.
This can lead you to close yourself off and alienate yourself from the people in your life. It can also potentially damage the relationships you’re intending to strengthen by constantly saying yes.
Boundaries can be described as how emotionally close you let people get to you. They are also where you draw the line within a relationship. They say how much you are willing to give or take before requiring that things change or deciding to call it quits.
Setting healthy boundaries in relationships is a key skill for relationship stress management. It is a kindness we can do for ourselves as well as for those we are close to.
When you don’t set boundaries on what you will say yes and no to, you can easily take on more responsibilities than you are comfortable with just to please others. This is called rejection sensitivity and can add stress as you try to navigate a lifestyle that is too busy for your comfort level.
Setting healthy boundaries helps you maintain the right balance in your schedule and in your life. It gives you permission to say no and better protect your time.
When you feel like the give and take in a relationship is out of balance, this can create conflict. Conflict often leads to stress, which can not only hurt your relationship further, but can also harm your physical health.
Every relationship experiences some level of conflict or disagreement. When this conflict is related to not setting or enforcing clear boundaries, you may find that it lingers. It is never fully resolved because it keeps happening again and again.
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 professional.
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 will allow you to set the right boundaries.
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