Boundaries can be difficult, especially if you have frequently encountered codependency in your life. This can make it hard to know what you need and want when things in your inner world are not right—let alone know how to ask for it.
Learning to set boundaries requires getting to know yourself and defining what is and is not okay with you in relation to other people, your space, and your time.
What Are Boundaries?
Boundaries are invisible lines that define where you begin and another person ends. In other words, boundaries allow you to differentiate the responsibilities, feelings, thoughts, and desires you have versus those that somebody else has. Boundaries ensure your needs are not compromised because of someone else’s.
Why Boundaries Are Important
Without boundaries, you are more likely to develop unhealthy codependent relationships, neglect your needs, and walk on eggshells to keep the peace. Although they can be hard to set, boundaries create space for you to be yourself, and for other people to be themselves. They also help you discover what you need, think, and feel without another person influencing those answers.
How to Know What Boundaries to Set
Learning which boundaries you may need to set can let you take your power back and have space to come back to yourself. Some questions you may want to ask in the process of determining what to set boundaries around are:
- What are my limits?
- What do I need to feel well?
- Where does it feel like my limits are being crossed or violated?
- What situations do I feel resentful in?
The answers that come up for you can give you insight into areas of your life, relationships, and situations where boundaries may be needed to support both you and—although it may not seem like it—the other person too.
Boundaries Are Compassionate
You may find it difficult at first to uphold these boundaries. These new lines usually cause hurt feelings to rise in those you are setting boundaries with, which can also activate uncomfortable emotions in yourself. Although, setting boundaries is an act of self-compassion and care. Boundaries create space to experience freedom and better health in relationships, even if there is resistance.
When you set boundaries that upset another person, it is likely because not having that boundary benefited them in some way. It can also trigger them if they do not have boundaries, and wish they could set them as well. Setting boundaries with others and defining what your limits are can be uncomfortable but it is necessary.
Boundaries are essential when caring for your emotional and mental well-being. Not only are they an act of self-care and compassion for yourself, but for others too. Having boundaries and being clear, firm, and anchored in yourself gives you power. At Avalon Malibu, we realize how challenging it can be to end cycles of co-dependency and begin setting boundaries as you are healing and building self-trust and confidence. To get started on your journey, call Avalon Malibu at (844) 857-5992.