Do you spend a large amount of your time trying to please others? Do you think that this is the only way that can make yourself happy? If you do then it is time for you to change. The most effective way to do this is to set up personal boundaries so that you can lessen your dependence on other people to be truly happy.
Without any boundaries in place other people will believe that they can treat you just how they want to. A boundary is really just a set of rules that you live by and others have to abide by in their dealings with you.
When you set up effective personal boundaries you are on your way to establishing healthier relationships with other people as well as yourself. Each of your boundaries specify what you will permit in your life and what you will not.
With each boundary you create there can be physical or emotional components or both. Think about your boundaries of the start of your independence and your safety net. Once you have decided what your boundaries will be you need to tell others what they are. If someone then tries to violate one of your boundaries you need to let them know they have done this.
So here we will take a look at some of the most effective personal boundaries that you can establish.
Setting Boundaries is not a Selfish Act
Before we get into the specific boundaries you can set we want you to realize that this is not a selfish act. This will be healthy for you and it can be good for those around you too. When you set boundaries you are telling others how you see a healthy relationship working. It doesn’t mean that you want people out of your life for good.
Start with Small Boundaries first
If people have been walking all over you for a long time to get what they want it will be a major shock for them that you are going to introduce boundaries. So it is best to make some small changes to begin with on your journey to independence and freedom.
Perhaps you have a full calendar of appointments and tasks that are all based around helping others. A good first step could be to get rid of some of these commitments so that you can have more time for yourself. Be prepared for some resistance here but persevere with it. In time people will get the message.
We absolutely encourage you to set goals for yourself to improve your life and lessen your dependency on others. But we ask that you are realistic about this in terms of the time that you have available.
If you want to learn a new skill and you need to attend school to do this is this a practical solution for you? You can certainly cut out some of your commitments to free up more time but if you have young children is it practical for you to attend school? Find a practical solution and go for it.
Create a Speaking Out boundary
Do you speak your mind? Most people that are at the beck and call of others a lot do not do this. Since they were a child they have been told to put the needs of others first and not to question anything. But sometimes things get too much and you have to speak out.
This is not going to be an easy one for you at first if you are not used to speaking out but persist with it anyway. Learn how to be more assertive rather than antagonistic. With any boundary you set it is important to stick by it no matter how uncomfortable it gets.