Why Do I Need Boundaries?
Boundaries are imaginary lines that separate your physical space, feelings, needs, and responsibilities from others.
These boundaries let other people know your expectations for how they should treat you. Without boundaries, people may take advantage of you or disrespect you, what matters to you and your needs.
Many women find setting boundaries to be difficult. The reason for this is that for the boundary to work, you must be willing to tell someone who has crossed a boundary that they are in the wrong.
However, many of us have been raised to put the needs and feelings of others above ourselves. There is a confusing grey area between caring and being considerate, to ensuring others know where you stand and what you stand for. A womanly trait is to be gentle and understanding, giving space to others and their needs so I have a belief that we have been effectively trained ‘not know’ what boundaries really are. Where does that line of ‘I am being considerate’ to ‘your stepping over my boundaries’ start and end?
Boundaries are imperative to having healthy relationships that are beneficial to both you and the other person. If you don’t set them, then how do other’s know what you stand for and what you need?
Why Are Boundaries So Important To My Wellbeing & Ensuring Healthy Relationships?
There are several reasons why you need boundaries. Here are the most important:
1. Boundaries allow you to be your most authentic self
When you create and enforce boundaries, you draw an invisible line
between you and another person. As a result, you become a unique individual who is separate from everyone else. This allows you to have your own feelings, make your own decisions, and know what you need without trying to please others.
2. Boundaries are self-care
One of the most important aspects of self-care is valuing and respecting
your own needs and feelings. You focus on your needs instead of worrying about what someone else wants from you. If you disagree with this, ask yourself one question. What kind of mother, partner, boss, daughter, freind would I be if I took care of me first? It sounds selfish, but wouldn’t you be a better, complete and whole person for those around you if you look after you instead of sacrificing yourself and your boundaries?
3. Boundaries set realistic expectations with clear directions
Whenever you set a boundary, you and the other party involved become
explicitly aware of what is expected of each other. As a result, the
relationship’s expectations become realistic and come with clear directions.
Normally, people behave correctly when they know what is expected of
4. Boundaries protect you emotionally and physically
Boundaries tell you how you should be treated. If someone repeatedly breaks your boundaries, whether they be emotional or physical, you immediately know that that person does not care about you and your feelings. As a result, you become keenly aware of who you should let into your life and who you should avoid. This allows you to protect yourself from
uncomfortable or hurtful situations.
What Are The Types Of Boundaries?
Why Are Boundaries So Difficult To Put Into Place?
1. Boundaries require you to put yourself first
2. Boundaries require you to know yourself
3. Boundaries require you to feel like you have right
4. Fear that boundaries jeopardize the relationship
5. Boundaries take practice
Defining You Boundaries
You can begin to find your boundaries by asking yourself about your rights. Here are basic rights that you should factor into your boundaries:
• You have a right to say no without guilt.
• You have a right to be treated respectfully.
• You have a right to put your needs on par with someone else’s.
• You have a right to accept your mistakes and flaws.
• You have a right to reject other people’s unreasonable expectations.
You can also add your own rights that are unique to yourself and your
experiences. It is important to identify your rights and choose why you
believe in them.
This will allow you to honor your emotions and needs more truthfully. As a result, you will stop wasting time trying to please others and focus on yourself instead.
In addition to your rights, it is important to identify your 10 most important values in life. If you do not know what your values are, you will not be able to act in a way that is respectful to yourself and others.
As you think about your values in life, also think about how and when they are challenged or provoked in any way. Does a colleague do something that makes you feel uncomfortable regarding your
values? If so, it is likely that you need to create a boundary about that value.
As you start developing your list of rights and values, begin to pay attention to how you feel when you interact with other people. Are there certain scenarios that make you feel uncomfortable? Does a certain person make you feel bad on a regular basis? Do you feel stressed in certain social scenarios? Paying attention to these instances will inform you of what areas you need to set boundaries in.
From there, you can start setting your own boundaries. It is important to keep in mind that boundaries do not have to be rigid. You may learn through trial and error that certain boundaries are unrealistic or not relevant to your true values and needs. In that case, adjust your boundaries accordingly.
How to Express Boundaries to Your Boss and Coworkers
Boundaries are not meant to punish, but they are instead meant to make relationships healthier and more productive. For professional boundaries, it is best to approach your boss and coworkers as though the conversation was a negotiation. Express the problem using assertive language and “I” statements.
Then, submit the proposed solution, which in this case is the boundaries.
From there, explore and explicitly list what your boundaries entail. Give your boss or coworkers a chance to ask questions and fully understand the boundaries.
At the same time, ask your boss or coworkers their side of the story. Do not look at this as a one-sided negotiation.
Hear how they look at the situation and gain from their perspective. Be prepared to adjust your boundary in order to compromise with the other coworker. Once again, this is a negotiation. So, work with their perspectives so that both parties feel respected.
What To Do When You Experience Push Back
In most scenarios, your boss or coworker will be willing to work with your boundaries. The reason for this is that they are also human and understand the pressures of work and life.
Here’s what you should do if you experience pushback:
1. Reiterate the boundary and why its set
Begin by reiterating your boundary and explaining why you need it. Doing this may clarify any misunderstandings about the boundary, which may be the root of the pushback. If the misunderstanding is resolved, then your boss might not push back anymore. Be sure to listen to the other person’s thoughts and worries as well as express your own thoughts and worries.
2. See if you can come to a compromise
If all misunderstandings are resolved but you are still experiencing pushback, see if you and the other person can compromise. Boundaries, especially those in the workplace, are about being flexible so that both parties feel respected and heard. Coming up with a compromise may be a great way to respect your needs while respecting the company or other coworker’s needs.
3. Do not budge
If the other person is still resistant to the boundary and is unwilling to compromise, do not budge. You are just as important as the other person in the company. So, do not allow another person to bully you out of your boundary. Respectfully but firmly say that you will not change your boundary unless they are willing to compromise as well. It is highly imperative to have boundaries in the workplace so that way you can be the most professional and proficient worker possible. Make sure to set professional boundaries that are respectful and flexible to your other coworkers, and make sure to express the boundaries clearly and assertively. You may want to approach the discussion as though it were a negotiation. If you experience pushback, reiterate the boundary, and try to come to a compromise, but do not budge.