How to set boundaries as a form of self-care
Did you know an essential part of your self-care journey should include setting boundaries? If this sounds unsettling, I understand why. When people speak on self-care they often only talk about the good things, the breakthroughs that they had with changing their diet, or their first yoga session, oftentimes the conversations around self-care neglect what may be the most difficult and jarring aspect of starting a self-care journey. Setting boundaries. In this post, we’ll discuss how you can set healthy boundaries and the specific phrases you can use in a variety of different situations when advocating for yourself and your needs, let’s dive in:
- Well renowned Shame Researcher and Licensed Social Worker, Brene Brown describes boundaries simply as this: What is ok and what is not ok.
To further elaborate, boundaries help to establish a firm line to keep you in a healthy balance with your relationships, your body, your work, and your peace. When we fail to set boundaries, it can become easy to fall into unhealthy relationships, to become burnt out at work, and to make choices that affect all aspects of our health - mental and physical. Once you’ve taken time to identify your needs and limits, you empower yourself to take more control of your time, and your overall well-being.
Let’s look at healthy phrases we can use for setting boundaries that help us stay in balance with ourselves and others:
- Physical - "I'd prefer not to hold hands with someone I just met."
- Financial - "I know you need help. I am unable to send you money right now."
- Internal - "I can't go out, I need some time by myself to recharge."
- Emotional - "I understand that you are upset. I do not have the capacity to support you emotionally right now."
- Conversational - "I appreciate your point of view, I’d prefer not to discuss any further at this time."
- Mental - "I am not able to make a decision right now. I need more time to think it over."
- Social - “Thank you for your generosity, however, I’m cutting back on drinking right now.”
These phrases can apply to a plethora of versatile situations, including in relationships with family and friends or at work. So if you’re struggling with the words needed to express your boundaries feel free to come back and reference this article. Practice saying these phrases in the mirror or even have mock-conversations with close-friends who feel safe.
The scariest thing about setting boundaries is allowing yourself to be heard as well as anticipating how your boundary will be received. And as uncomfortable as this may sound, it's important to trust that your voice matters. Your needs and feelings are valid and deserve space. When we silence how we really feel, we may find ourselves in situations that do not serve us in the long run. So let this serve as a gentle reminder that no matter what, you deserve to be heard and have your boundaries respected. After all, isn't prioritizing your needs what self-care is all about?
If you’re looking to define more ways to set healthy boundaries, let’s connect. Together, we can work on understanding how to define those boundaries for yourself and empower you to communicate your needs effectively. Click below to book your free consultation and start your journey toward healing.