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Boundaries – Why they are important and how to set & respect them?

Boundaries. We know the uncomfortable feeling when someone has crossed one, but how often are we actively setting boundaries? Granted, this can be kind of daunting, especially when meeting new people. You start to wonder if that will change the dynamic between the two of you, if things will change, and it can be scary. Truth be told, setting boundaries will change some things but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Maintaining healthy boundaries in a relationship, any relationship romantic or platonic, helps you respect yourself, how you feel and what you value. When you’re dating it might even be better to set them from the start to help foster a safe space and a healthy relationship.

Now, we can’t sit here and tell you what your boundaries are, that’s for you to decide. Personal boundaries come in various forms, and they will differ from one person to another, so it’s best to have an open and honest conversation. Whether your boundaries are emotional, physical, financial, spiritual, etc., ensuring your partner (or potential partner) is aware of them is the first step to make sure yours are being respected. Drawing boundaries in relationships requires an open, honest and sometimes awkward conversation.

Boundaries can look like:

  • Saying no
  • Needing time alone or some space
  • Respect
  • Maintaining a sense of individuality

And more.

It’s important to know that your partner may not have the same boundaries as you do, and that’s okay. They should respect yours, as you should respect theirs. We’ve spent all this time on setting your own boundaries, it might be confusing how you can respect someone else’s. It’s simple. It all comes down to conscious communication.  Ask questions and listen to what the other person has to say.

With time, boundaries can also start to look different, but the steps to success remain the same. Communicate honestly and openly with respect.