What are boundaries? Think of them as the bouncers at the nightclub of your life—they’re there to make sure only the right vibes are allowed in. They’re like the invisible force fields we create around ourselves to protect our sanity, happiness, and energy. They’re your personal “no-go” zones, the “don’t you dare cross this line” markers in the sand. Boundaries say, “Hey, world, you can’t just stroll into my headspace or trample over my feelings like a bull in a china shop.”
What setting boundaries looks like
Setting boundaries is like creating a force field that protects your sanity, and empowers you to live your best life. Below are examples of boundaries, and what they may look like in your life.
1. It’s okay to say No. No is your personal catchphrase for self-preservation. Wielding this power, you can fend off overcommitment, guilt, and exhaustion. Saying no is like wearing an invisibility cloak against unreasonable demands.
2. It’s your job to make YOU happy and figure out what brings you joy. Happiness is like a treasure hunt, and you’re the intrepid explorer. This boundary reminds you that you’re the chief happiness officer in your life, searching for your own joy.
3. It’s not your job to think, feel, or live for others. You’re the main character in your own life, not a character in someone else’s screenplay. Set this boundary and be the star of your own show, free to improvise as you go.
4. You have a right to feel your feelings no matter what anyone else feels about your feelings. Your feelings are like rare collector’s items; don’t let anyone devalue them. This boundary allows you to own your emotions like a boss, no permission slip required.
5. No one has to agree with you. Imagine life as a giant buffet; not everyone’s going to like the same dishes. This boundary lets you savor the diversity of thought without becoming the food critic.
6. No one has a right to verbally abuse you, and that includes family, friends, partners, and coworkers. Verbal abuse is the villain of boundaries. This boundary is your superhero shield, protecting you from hurtful words.
7. It’s not your responsibility to make sure others are responsible. Imagine life as a theme park, where each person is responsible for their own roller coaster ride. You are not the park supervisor who needs to check on everything and everyone. You’re just there to enjoy the ride.
8. It’s not your job to rescue people from their drama. Life’s a theatrical performance, and you’re not the understudy for everyone’s role. Establish this boundary to keep your name out of the credits of other people’s drama productions.
9. It is okay if others get angry. Let people feel the way they are going to feel. This boundary is your ticket to letting others express themselves without trying to deflate their emotions.
10. It’s not okay to get entangled in the thoughts and emotions of other people. Empathizing with others or connecting with others on a deep level is important, but it is never a good idea to lose yourself in someone else’s world to the detriment of your own well-being and autonomy. Healthy boundaries ensure that you can maintain your identity and make decisions based on your needs and values, even in close relationships. You can be your own superhero—you don’t need to be anyone’s sidekick.
11. It’s okay to spend time alone without explaining yourself. “Me time” is your secret lair for self-rejuvenation. This boundary allows you to slip away into solitude like Batman into the Batcave, without having to file a report to the Batcomputer.
12. You do not need permission to be who you are, or think what you think. Your identity is like a rare collectible action figure; it’s valuable just as it is. This boundary encourages you to celebrate your uniqueness without waiting for a superhero team-up.
13. Other people have every right to not like you or disagree with you, but they do not have the right to disrespect you. While it’s acceptable for others not to like you or to have differing views and opinions, they should always treat you with kindness, courtesy, and consideration. As a Queen, expect respect—there is a clear line between healthy disagreements and disrespectful conduct.
14. You have a right to end draining conversations and relationships. Life’s too short for endless reruns of negativity. This boundary is your remote control; use it to change the channel when conversations or relationships drain your energy.