How to Find My Healthy Boundaries
Have you are ever traveled down the road of good intentions and discovered the road has led you to a winding valley of feeling overwhelmed and over extended? If you have, you might find yourself wondering how you got here. You may begin to wonder where you made a wrong turn. Understanding how to develop healthy boundaries can be very useful in avoiding the pitfalls of frustration. Let’s look at a few practical areas in which we can create healthy boundaries. These common areas are personal, family, and professional.
- Personal boundaries can be identified as behaviors and actions we find acceptable and unacceptable in our lives. When we struggle with personal boundaries we tend to put the needs of others above ourselves in an unhealthy manner. Developing healthy personal boundaries requires one to draw a line in the sand, so to speak, and be clear as to what is acceptable behavior and treatment. If the behavior and treatment of others causes harm or unnecessary distress to one personal peace, it is an indication that a healthy boundary has been broken.
- Family boundaries are a bit more complicated. As a parent I have found that it’s difficult to identify the difference between being a good and involved parent and giving your children the space to grow into their independence. Establishing boundaries within a family, especially when you are a caregiver, requires prioritizing self-care. An easy way to begin this process is having an honest conversation with loved ones; establishing regularly scheduled time in which you can focus on your needs; and reminding loved ones that your self-care is important to the well-being of the entire family. Remember, you are not super human. You need care just as everyone else does from time to time.
- 3. Professional boundaries can be useful. It involves being aware of your job responsibilities, professional ethics, and professional reputation. Professional boundaries also allow the professional to recognize when their right to a healthy non-threatening work environment has been compromised. Once again boundaries help determine what you will and will not accept. In a work situation that clear line allows for clear communication and professional well-being.
It is never too late to establish healthy boundaries in your life. Don’t be dismayed if you have not done so thus far. I recommend taking a moment and making a list of areas in your life in which you believe boundaries are needed. Begin to take control of those areas that seem out of control. In addition, please know you are not being selfish by taking care of yourself and establishing healthy boundaries.
May your winding road become straight and pleasant and may you find peace as you establish your needs as a priority in your life.
Alicia Lurry MA LPC CRC