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setting boundaries

Every relationship is a two-way street. There are compromises, give, and take. Whether you are interacting with family, friends, coworkers, or a significant other, boundaries are a vital part of maintaining a healthy connection.

Setting and keeping boundaries is not a weakness, in fact, it shows a strength in a relationship. If this is something that is new to you, you may be unsure where to begin.

The important idea is to make sure your needs are being met, and you feel secure. This includes the physical, emotional, spiritual, and mental aspects of your life.

Here are a few suggestions to help you begin setting healthy boundaries and reinforcing your relationships. 


Listen to Yourself

Our bodies are very powerful. When we sense that something isn’t quite right, or isn’t sitting well with us, our body sends us signals. Pay attention to your feelings.

If you are noticing that you are becoming resentful of another person, or uncomfortable in a situation, these are signs that you may need to address your boundaries. With someone you trust, or alone, figure out where these feelings are coming from.

Where is the boundary being crossed? Once you can pinpoint the root of the issue, figure out what would be more acceptable for you, or what would help these feelings change.

Creating a boundary begins with you. You must identify what you need so that you can ask it from others. Don’t sell yourself short! It’s okay to ask for what you require.

The thought of setting this standard may feel intimidating, and emotions like guilt and shame might arise. Having the self-respect to stand up for yourself is admirable. Try not to focus on the other person’s response, and honor your values and wishes. Ask for support if you need it!


Speak Up

As much as we may wish it, other people are not mind readers. In many circumstances, the other person in your relationship may be unaware that they are crossing your boundary.

It is vital to speak up for yourself and communicate what changes you’d like to see. Be direct and assertive when you are setting boundaries. Explain what you need clearly and help the other person understand if you have to.

Try not to demand, have a conversation. If this still seems intimidating, begin with a smaller boundary to set. Beginning with something small won’t feel as aggressive and will help you find what works best in making yourself heard.

Remember, you are worthy of respect and deserve to be treated with compassion. Others may not know that you are hurting or feeling threatened until you speak up. If they don’t respond with empathy and a willingness to change, it says more about their character than your own.

You have a right to feel secure, and if another person in your relationship isn’t willing to comply with your needs, it’s not your fault at all. Those who can respect and keep the boundaries you set, and who you can do the same for, are the strongest relationships you will form. 


At The Guest House Ocala, we have personal recovery experience and over 12 years in the recovery industry. We have helped countless people recover, and we’re here to help you too. Call 855-483-7800 today for more information.