The Importance of Setting Healthy Boundaries
Updated: Feb 6, 2021
The ability to set healthy boundaries is an essential self-care tool.
Setting firm boundaries is vital to establishing healthy relationships and protecting yourself by defining what you are willing and not willing to accept. By not having the appropriate boundaries, you allow others to manage your time, feelings and needs.
Healthy boundaries help you maintain a stable self-esteem, a positive relationship with yourself and reduce negative emotions such as anxiety, stress or depression and foster fulfilling relationships.
Most of the time, people will cross your boundaries in good faith without evaluating the impact their decisions or actions will have on you. When this happens, your role is to make them aware of that.
Having healthy boundaries doesn't mean that you won't be available for others anymore. It means that before you agree to something, you allow yourself time to assess if this is right for you and the permission to say 'No' guilt-free.
"Setting boundaries is a way of caring for myself. It doesn’t make me mean, selfish,
or uncaring (just) because I don’t do things your way. I care about me, too."
Being consistent in managing boundaries is not simple, especially when implementing those boundaries with the people you love and are afraid to lose. Nonetheless, if setting boundaries is something new for you, establishing them can be a challenging experience. When you feel challenged, remind yourself that having healthy boundaries gives you the key to self-love and self-care.
Through boundaries, you build independence, safety, and self-esteem.
Most common threats for boundaries are grey areas due to emotional involvement or unclear roles. In these cases, it becomes tricky to define where the limit is, and you might dread the outcome of the decision.
It is vital to learn to distinguish between other's caring and manipulative or supporting and decision-making behaviours.
No matter the difficulties you may encounter, setting boundaries remains a crucial task as:
Protecting your well-being is your responsibility. You have to feel good to be able to be positively present for others.