Making boundaries is hard! Sometimes it can feel like having boundaries is not loving or kind to the people around us. But in reality it is a great way to love others and ourselves. Often when we are in situations or in relationships with no boundaries it can lead to those things becoming toxic. Take a minute to reflect on these questions:
What does having boundaries mean to me?
How do I implement boundaries in my life?
Where are areas in my life that I know I need more boundaries?
What are boundaries?
I think of boundaries as how much access others have to you. Access to you in whatever way is a privilege not a right. We can set limitations and boundaries on how much access someone has to us emotionally, mentally, spiritually, physically, and sexually. This also applies to access to your time and physical items (Campbell, 2021). These types of boundaries are applicable to all areas of our lives and we get to decide what they look like in various relationships and settings.
This is not easy!! It can be very difficult to set boundaries with people. It’s also hard to accept within ourselves the boundaries we need. Consider taking some time reflecting on these questions:
What area in my life do I feel like I need more boundaries?
What category of boundaries is most difficult for me to implement?
Which of my boundaries is most important to me and why?
Resilience & Boundaries
- Boundaries help facilitate safety. This is so important to building resilience! It is very difficult to build resilience while we are in spaces that we feel unsafe. That is because our brain and body are detecting that we are mot safe, whether that be emotionally, mentally, or physically, and will trigger our body to be on alert and possibly release stress hormones. This then triggers us to be in a survival mode and not in our resilient zone. When we have boundaries it allows us to be comfortable with the access people have to us, which helps us to feel safe.
- Boundaries help us regulate stress. When we don’t have boundaries we can find ourselves in situations that are stressful and possibly triggering. When we have boundaries we can set ourselves up for success in situations that allows us to not be overwhelmed by stress.
- Boundaries allow us to identify and communicate our needs. Having boundaries helps us to communicate our needs to our friends, coworkers, and loved ones. It can be hard to communicate what we need, but having boundaries established a head of time allows us to know what we need and implement that.