16 Ways to Establish Healthy Boundaries and Have Better Relationships

Setting healthy boundaries is a skill that allows you to maintain healthy relationships with friends, family members, romantic partners, and coworkers. You will feel safe and respected by establishing the limits of appropriate behavior among the people you interact with. But how do you establish boundaries? The following are sixteen ways to establish healthy boundaries with everyone. 

1. Trust Your Intuition 

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Setting boundaries is often tricky because you must balance your needs with someone else's. There will be several moments when you need to set, adapt, or tighten your boundaries. You must trust your intuition and believe you're doing what's suitable for you, even when others may not understand.

2. Start With What You Need

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Which areas of your life are you most in need of boundaries? Do you have an unhealthy relationship with a family member? Are you a people pleaser? Do you feel like your work life is affecting your personal life? Give yourself time to reflect on your life and determine which areas you need to set boundaries and what these boundaries should be. 

3. Every Relationship is Different 

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The boundaries you set will be different depending on the people involved. The boundaries you would set with a friend or partner will be more flexible than those with a coworker. The boundaries you would set with your parents will differ from those your friends would set with theirs. When setting boundaries, know and understand that every relationship is different and requires different boundaries. 

4. Start With a Few Boundaries 

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If this is your first time doing so, setting boundaries with the people in your life will take time. It could also be overwhelming to introduce several boundaries in your personal relationships. Instead of bombarding someone with a laundry list of do's and don'ts, start with a few boundaries at a time and allow your preferences to be naturally revealed.

5. Consider Setting Boundaries Early 

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The most difficult boundaries to establish are those that affect pre-existing relationships. People will question why certain boundaries are an issue when they weren't before. Establish boundaries immediately instead of waiting for a problem to arise to inform people where you draw the line. 

6. Speak Up Respectfully 

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Conversations about enforcing boundaries don't need to be harsh or confusing. No one can respect your boundaries if they don't know what they are. Sometimes, people may unintentionally cross a boundary. Speak up for yourself clearly, concisely, and respectfully. 

7. Be Consistent 

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Something cannot be an issue today, but you allow it to slide tomorrow. Likewise, you can't enforce a consequence one day and be lenient the next time a boundary is crossed. Be consistent with your boundaries. Once you've explained your expectations to people, understand that there will be moments when your boundaries aren't respected. You need to be consistent with enforcing them. 

8. Communicate When Your Boundaries Are Crossed 

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The people around you can't read your mind. If someone has wronged you, crossed a boundary, or disrespected you, let them know. Communicating clearly that your boundary has been crossed will ensure people don't unintentionally disrespect you and prove that you should be taken seriously. 

9. Practice Self-Love

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When you know your worth, people are less likely to take advantage of you. If setting boundaries doesn't come naturally to you, try setting aside some time to practice self-love. The more you engage in self-care activities, the more you improve your self-worth and self-esteem, and the easier it will be to set healthy boundaries. 

10. Don't Be Afraid to Say No 

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Do you find yourself saying yes to everything? People who are afraid to say no will often have their boundaries disrespected. They usually set aside their own well-being to please others. Don't hesitate to say no if you want to establish and maintain healthy boundaries.

11. Take Time for Yourself

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It's entirely fair and perfectly normal to take a step back when needed. It's normal to be caught off guard, but how you react makes the difference. If you're in a situation where you're unsure of how to respond or need time to reflect and recenter yourself, take it. 

12. Set Digital Boundaries 

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Boundaries don't only apply to in-person interactions; you must also set digital boundaries. Healthy digital boundaries are essential whether these boundaries apply to followers, online friends, or virtual work. If you're a remote worker, it can be easy to blur the lines between work and personal life; prioritize your digital boundaries to ensure your work life remains separate. 

13. Be Comfortable With Being Uncomfortable 

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People not used to enforcing boundaries may feel guilty, nervous, or scared when imposing a personal limit. You'll always feel uncomfortable enforcing your boundaries until you've gotten used to asserting yourself. Give yourself time to develop a tolerance for these uncomfortable and confusing feelings. 

14. Create Consequences 

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A boundary without a consequence will be ineffective. If someone constantly disrespects your boundaries with no consequence, they won't take them seriously. Choose something you are willing to do if someone fails to respect your boundaries and stand by it. 

15. Know That Boundaries Are Flexible 

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Boundaries constantly change due to time, life conditions, or relationship dynamics. Maintaining healthy boundaries with anyone will be challenging if your boundaries are too rigid or too flexible. Be willing to accept and embrace flexibility when setting boundaries; ensure that your rules always serve you. 

16. Respect Other People's Boundaries

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Why should you expect anyone to respect your boundaries if you don't do the same? It's much easier to convince others to treat you how you'd like to be treated if you offer them the same courtesies. Once someone establishes a boundary, respect it. 


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She started her blog, The Money Dreamer, when she realized the 9-5 job was not the lifestyle she wanted anymore. After designing for a while, she wanted a more meaningful life, which was freedom, so she decided to venture out. She took action so that she can live her dream life and decided to help people to live theirs by helping them how to save, budget, and invest.

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