How to Set Boundaries: A Guide to Setting Healthy Boundaries in 2021

Do you find it hard to set boundaries and follow through? Do you need to set boundaries? Do you want to enjoy having personal space? Do you find it hard to set healthy boundaries? Are you interested in setting healthy boundaries? If you answered yes to any of these questions, this article is for you.

Hi. My name is Sean Galla, and I am a facilitator for online support groups for me. Being in a support group involves learning how to set healthy boundaries with the people in your life. Whether it is with family, co-workers, or spouses, individuals need to learn how to set healthy boundaries. Not having clear set boundaries can be detrimental to one’s well-being or wellness. This article will tell you everything you need to know about setting boundaries and why it is important.

Written by

Sean Galla

An experienced facilitator, community builder and Peer Support Specialist, Sean has been running men's groups for 10+ years. Read Sean's Full Author Bio.

What Are Boundaries?

How to Set Boundaries

A personal boundary can be defined as a space or limit between you and the people around you. It can be termed as a line that determines how close people can get to you. It is a clear line that tells people how close they can get or where their presence/involvement in your life should end. The main purpose and need for creating healthy boundaries is mainly self-care and preservation.

Setting boundaries is a crucial part of your identity and crucial for your general and mental well-being. Boundaries can be emotional or physical and can range from loose to rigid and healthy to unhealthy. Healthy boundaries fall somewhere between loose and rigid.

Boundaries are a form of self-preservation. You can set physical, mental, or emotional limits with the people in your life to protect yourself from being used, abused, violated, or manipulated. When you set boundaries, you separate who you are, your feelings and thoughts from those of others. Setting boundaries is important because it shows people how they can treat you, what you can tolerate, and what you will not stand, which helps preserve your mental health. Boundaries should be a direct reflection of your beliefs, values, and your self-worth.

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Healthy vs. Unhealthy Boundaries

When setting boundaries, sometimes the line between healthy and unhealthy boundaries can get blurry. Generally, unhealthy boundaries usually have red flags like disregard for the values, needs, limits, and wants of the people around you. Unhealthy boundaries lead to unhealthy relationships, be it at work or in your personal life. It often breeds abuse in different types of relationships. Attributes of unhealthy boundaries include:

  • Disregard for other peoples beliefs, opinions, and values if you disagree with them
  • Having a hard time saying no or accepting it when others say no to you
  • Taking responsibility for other people’s happiness or feelings
  • Taking the responsibility to fix or save others
  • Zero regards for other people’s physical boundaries
  • Engaging in sexual activity without seeking consent from the other party.

Setting healthy boundaries involves respecting other people’s opinions, ideas, and personal space, being able to say no and accept being told no, and being able to communicate your needs and wants effectively. Being kind and compassionate to yourself is an important part of setting healthy boundaries.

Healthy boundaries are set to ensure your emotional health and mental stability. Having clear boundaries shows that you have a strong identity and self-respect. It helps you define your individuality and makes it easy for you to know what you are responsible for and what you are not.

Now that you have a clear understanding of healthy and unhealthy boundaries, this article will focus on setting healthy boundaries, why they are important for self-care, and how to set them.

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The Benefits of Setting Boundaries

Benefits of Setting Boundaries

They improve your self-esteem and relationships.

If you find that you are codependent in your relationships or are a people-pleaser, it may indicate a lack of relationship boundaries or boundary violations.

Whether it is at work, in your personal relationships, with a family member or friends, setting boundaries is paramount to healthy relationships. When you set boundaries, you protect your relationships from the possibility of turning toxic. Good boundaries can bring you closer to your loved ones, making them highly necessary in all relationships.

Boundaries allow you to be vulnerable and experience growth.

When life happens, you are left to deal with complex feelings as you try to make sense of the situation. When you have emotional boundaries, you can be vulnerable around the people closest to you without sharing too much about your life or own feelings. Healthy boundaries make it easier to determine whom you let in your safe space.

Shared vulnerability is a good way of bringing you closer to the people in your life without over-sharing. Healthy boundaries allow you to grow emotionally and mentally without holding other people emotionally hostage or forcing relationships.

Strong Boundaries can help to conserver emotional energy.

When you do not have clear set boundaries, it can affect your identity and self-esteem. This often leads to resentment towards other people since you cannot advocate for your feelings and needs. Setting boundaries helps to preserve your emotional energy since you do not need to spend time resenting people and having your emotions constantly trampled on.

When you have healthy boundaries, you have energy for self-care and self-preservation. When you set boundaries, you can determine the amount of emotional lifting you can do for your friends and loved ones. It makes it easier for you to determine what requires your mental space and what does not.

How To Set Healthy Boundaries

How To Set Healthy Boundaries

To be able to set boundaries, you need first to determine where you stand. Start by identifying emotional, physical, mental, and spiritual limits determined by what you can accept and tolerate versus what makes you feel uncomfortable or stressed. Being able to articulate your feelings makes it easy for you to set limits.

Tune into your feelings

Two key feelings you experience when you allow people to cross your boundaries are resentment and discomfort. You need to gauge these two feelings, where a six to ten grading shows an overstepping on boundaries.

Resentment is caused when people take advantage of you or you feel unappreciated. This is often a sign that you are pushing beyond your limits because of guilt or allowing others to impose their expectations, values, or views.

Discomfort is also caused when someone does something that violates your boundaries. When you realize someone’s actions make you uncomfortable, it is often an indication of crossed self-boundary limits.  

Tuning into your feelings makes it easier for you to ensure you set better boundaries that will be respected.

Be direct

When you are around people who do not share your ideas about boundaries, it is important to be more direct. For instance, in a romantic relationship, time is usually a common boundary issue. For the time boundary to be clear, you need to talk to your spouse about how much time you need to spend alone as part of self-preservation. Being direct about your boundaries in any relationship or partnership is important to ensure you are on the same page with others.

Be self-aware

Self-awareness is important when it comes to maintaining your boundaries. When you are self-aware, you will notice when you are breaking your boundaries or when others are. When you are aware, you will notice when a situation makes you stressed or resentful, which is an indication that your boundaries are being crossed.

Prioritize self-care

It is important to allow yourself to put yourself first at all times s the art of self-care and enforcing boundaries. Part of self-care is being in tune with your feelings and honoring how you feel at all times. These feelings are an important cue for your well-being and identifying what makes you happy and what does not.

Get support

If you find yourself struggling with setting healthy boundaries, you can seek support or help from a group or coach. While life coaches can be helpful, they can be expensive, making it hard for most people to approach the idea. The best way to learn how to set healthy boundaries without breaking the bank is to join a support group like mensgroup.com.

Information About Men’s Group

Information About Men's Group

Men’s Group is an online support group for men that strives to offer group session support, guidance, and help to men struggling with different life issues, including setting boundaries.

Mensgroup is a supportive network made up of men who are ready and willing to help others like them through sharing life experiences. Mensgroup different group activities and processes like stories sharing and reading create a bond amongst the members.

The mensgroup.com group therapy session will give you the information you need to set healthy boundaries without compromising your personal relationships. It equips you with resources that make you a better man and ensure you lead a better, more fulfilling life.

Conclusion

Boundaries are self-care tools that make it possible for us to remain safe, strong, and empowered in all relationships. As you begin your journey to setting better boundaries, you will start to feel more empowered as you learn how to be comfortable in your personal space and putting yourself first.

Joining a support group like mensgroup.com can go a long way in helping you set your own boundaries and draw a clear line between your own needs, personal space, and those of others.

*Sources:
1. 10 Ways To Set Healthy Boundaries At Work
2. Setting Healthy Boundaries in Your Relationships
3. Boundaries – Why are they important? Part 1
4. This Is Why Setting Personal And Professional Boundaries Is Good For Your Health
5. Healthy boundaries and psychological safety in the workplace

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