As I continue to experience life, my understanding of the role I play in creating the life I want continues to grow. I understand now, better than ever, that I am responsible for the life I want. Meaning I can choose what and who I will and will not allow into my life. Basically, I have the power to implement and to create boundaries. This is true for you as well.
Boundaries are something to appreciate, respect and love. However, some may not see the significance of creating boundaries or understand how to create them. While others may still be learning what boundaries mean to them or how to modify boundaries as they grow. Regardless of where you find yourself on this continuum, I am sure you will agree with me that boundaries are necessary.
Boundaries help to establish healthy relationships, healthy communication and healthy activity with yourself, your loved ones, your community and your society. Essentially, boundaries help keep things in check. So, it is only right you purposefully create boundaries that will bring you the most peace, love and joy 😊.
However, if you have had any experience with creating boundaries you know it is not always easy. Mainly, due to the awkwardness standing up for yourself can sometimes bring. No one wants to be viewed as a person who is rude, a downer, a prude or whatever else you may imagine someone thinking about you should you choose to implement your personal boundaries. However, this pales in comparison to the hurt you may experience if you do not enforce your boundaries. Non- compliant individuals may also make the task of enforcing boundaries complicated but that should not stop you from standing your ground when it comes to the boundaries you create.
My experiences have led me to understand the necessary foundation needed to create healthy boundaries in my life as well as the proper steps to take to develop my personal boundaries. I want to share this knowledge with you.
Here is my guide to help you effectively create boundaries and implement them in your life-
How to create boundaries
Imagine the life you desire
This may seem like a silly thing to do but what you imagine for your life is just as important as the words you speak over your life. Your world is shaped by what you see, hear and say. So, when thinking about your boundaries you must imagine what your healthy life looks like. How will you communicate and interact with others? How will they communicate and interact with you? Imagine how these interactions will vary in times of conflict. How do you envision yourself resolving conflict in a healthy way?
Get in tune with your emotions
One major indicator of a crossed boundary are your feelings. It is important to be honest with yourself and others regarding how a situation or behavior made you feel. Regardless, if the feeling was positive or negative you should know how to identify your range of emotions for many reasons.
Here are a few examples of things to pay attention to:
- Where are your emotions stemming from? This will help you determine if a boundary was crossed or if you are just having a bad day
- How are your emotions influenced based on outside influences such as world news? This will help you identify moments when you may need to verbalize a modification regarding a boundary. For example, if you usually are open to discussing politics at work but a situation recently occurred which angers or hurts you, you may want to think about if you want to redefine your boundary of discussing politics at work. Are you okay with it no matter what, are you capable of keeping your composure or will you know how verbalize a modification such as passing on the topic for the day? Being clear on how your emotions change with things such as the world news will help you better establish and articulate your boundaries in an honest way.
- How do you express your own emotions? Understanding how you show up in this world will assist you in establishing what works best for you.
There are so many other things to consider regarding your emotions but the main takeaway here is to be upfront and honest with yourself and others about how you feel.
Note: While it is important to understand your emotions, it is equally important to use your discernment regarding them. Therefore, I continue to stress the importance of being honest about where your emotions come from and how you display your emotions in various situations.
Identify Your Values
In order to know what to protect you must understand what is worth protecting. For this reason, you should make a list (physical or mental) of all the things you consider valuable in your life and why. After making you list you should articulate how you will protect these things. This is how you create your boundaries. For example, if you really value your time, you will create boundaries which encourage yourself and others to value your time. So, you would avoid social media during work hours so you can achieve your work goals because you value your time at work.
Communicate Expectations Clearly
You have heard it before somewhere I am sure, but I will repeat it again. Communication is key. Communication is vital for our everyday existence… literally. It is how we express our needs, such as our need for safety and security which assist in establishing boundaries. Be direct and clear when communicating with others what is and is not okay with you. Additionally, be open and willing to communicate with others what their boundaries are because communication is a two-way street.
Do not Compromise
You teach people how you want to be treated. If you want people to know you are serious about a boundary you created, you must stand by your expectations. However, if you choose to modify your boundary you need to articulate your modification and stand by it. People will take the boundaries you established seriously when they understand that you also take them seriously. When you stand firm by what you say the people who are meant to be in your life will honor your wishes.
Of course, there may be harassment at work instances or instances of abuse in a relationship in which an individual may not respect a boundary. In these instances, I encourage you to speak to your human resource office, seek additional resources such as support groups and get authority figures involved.
You may find the following articles helpful for dealing with harassment at work:
If you are someone are in an abusive situation and need assistance call the National Abuse Hotline at 1-800-799-7233
Remember to Love yourself
Most importantly, remember to love yourself. Remember you are worthy of love and that God loves you. You are a prized possession. You are royalty. As such, you deserve to be treated in ways deemed healthy. Establishing boundaries will assist you in getting to healthy and will serve as an indication of the love you have for yourself.
I hope you found this article helpful. I would love to hear about your experience with creating and implementing boundaries. Feel free to share them in the comment section below.
I wish you the best with creating your boundaries and I wish you nothing but peace, love and joy!