Lets Talk Boundaries, the main guidelines/limits that we create to identify a safe foundation for how others behave towards them. When we thing of boundaries, we don’t always immediately categorise them. Boundaries are very important to have and exist in multiple facets of our lives and its always healthy and important to examine, adjust and reinforce these from time to time. There are various types of boundaries, I will be discussing the 4 different groups of boundaries. Physical, Emotional, Mental and Spiritual. Take the time to examine the different areas of your life and see what boundaries you have for yourself in each area.
We are all different in most aspects of our lives, therefore it’s understandable that our boundaries will also differ and will require different boundary setting limits. Some of you may have had the unfortunate experience of having some of your boundaries crossed or pushed. Boundaries are personal, although they may change over time, you should never allow anyone to violate or continuously cross them. We will be reflecting on what how we can communicate these boundaries more effectively.
Physical Boundaries: These are your physical body, your personal space and privacy. Violation of these boundaries include standing too close for comfort, inappropriate touching, someone going through your personal items. You communicate these boundaries both verbally and physically by expressing your feelings towards them ie. if someone is standing too close for comfort, you can remove yourself by stepping back and creating distance that’s safe.
Emotional Boundaries: This is allowing yourself to separate your feelings from those of others. Violations of these boundaries include letting others people’s feelings dictate yours, blaming yourself for someone else’s problem or actions, accepting responsibility for their behaviours. You can effectively communicate these by verbally expressing your thoughts, feelings and opinions. Commit to letting go of putting your emotional needs last, fixing other people’s problems, taking responsibility for other people’s actions. Feeling the need to save/rescue others and feeling the need to be constantly needed.
Mental Boundaries: This is your internal space of safety. Your mental boundaries include your thoughts, feelings, emotions, opinions and values. Violation of these boundaries include not feeling or able to comfortable or safe to express your feelings, thoughts and opinions. Someone talking over you or dismissing your thoughts and feelings.
Spiritual Boundaries: This is giving yourself the right to choose and freely define your own relationship with whatever higher power you relate to and not letting other people control who or what you believe in spiritually. Violation of these boundaries may include someone trying to force their religious beliefs on you.
To identify when your boundaries are being crossed, stay tuned to how you feel. The red flags include anxiety, discomfort, stress, resentment and fear. These feelings all stem from feeling violated or feeling like you have been taken advantage of. Think about the people who make you feel like this and ask yourself if they respect and acknowledge your boundaries.
Unhealthy boundaries are often characterised by a weak sense of your own identity and your own feelings. This may lead to you to rely on others for approval, happiness and decision making. Make a list of these 4 boundaries and visualize yourself setting them. Be assertive in communicating them to others and remember your personal boundaries are your invisible shield, they are sacred to you and nobody should control them but you. Set the standard for those you surround yourself with. People who love and respect you will care to respect and acknowledge your boundaries.