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  • Writer's pictureAlyssa Woolslair, LMHC

Power in Setting Healthy Boundaries




The term “boundaries” is often used in therapeutic settings but has become much more common in everyday language over the years. It is a term that is now often the center of self-care. Setting boundaries doesn’t just mean cutting someone negative off, it means prioritizing your own emotional and mental needs in a relationship dynamic that can often be seen as draining or overwhelming. 


Setting healthy boundaries can be viewed as creating space from someone, but the importance and power of setting boundaries goes beyond that. Without setting healthy boundaries, you may find yourself in a codependent or even toxic relationship. Boundaries are beneficial in romantic relationships, familial relationships, friendships, and even workplace relationships.  


Different Types of Boundaries:


  • Physical: Creating safety for your space, body, and physical needs. This can involve how you do or don’t want to be touched, how you interact with others, and the environment you surround yourself with.  


  • Emotional: Creating safety for your emotional well-being. This can involve protecting your own feelings and emotions, not people pleasing, having your own thoughts, and not feeling responsible for the emotions of others.


  • Sexual: Creating safety in a sexual environment. This involves consent and open communication about you and/or your partner’s comfort levels. 


  • Financial: Creating safety for your own finances and financial resources. This can involve how you make your money, how you spend it, and your right to not give or loan money elsewhere if it isn’t right for you.


  • Spiritual: Creating safety for what you choose to believe in and what serves as guidance for you. This involves being comfortable in your own beliefs and not allowing the judgements or opinions of others to influence these beliefs. 


  • Time: Creating safety for how you choose to spend your time. This can involve what you chose to do, when you chose to do it, and with who you choose to do it with. This can be both personal and professional, with an emphasis on not being overworked in your profession and not always feeling obligated to spend time with those in your personal life. 



Normalize Saying “No”


There is often a negative connotation to saying “no.” When it comes to setting healthy boundaries, it is time to challenge this negative connotation and normalize the idea of not always pleasing others.


Saying “no” can allow you to create emotional safety and not feel overwhelmed or obligated to put the wants and needs of others above yourself. Doing so takes practice, but the more you allow yourself to say “no” the easier it becomes. This idea can be implemented in any relationship dynamic. The more you implement this practice, the more you allow yourself to gain confidence with your own decision making and decrease the pattern of people pleasing.


Benefits of Setting Healthy Boundaries:


Without the use of healthy boundaries, people often find themselves in a pattern of people pleasing. This pattern can quickly feel emotionally overwhelming and draining. Prioritizing yourself and your needs isn’t an act of selfishness, but instead an act of self-care. 


There is often a feeling of empowerment when healthy boundaries are implemented. This empowerment can serve as motivation to continue to prioritize yourself and what is best for your mental health. If someone is not respecting the boundaries you have set, it is time to ask yourself if this is a relationship that is worth continued effort.


It is also important to note the act of respecting boundaries set by others. In doing so, you are creating a healthier relationship dynamic and recognizing the needs of others. 


If you start to feel yourself becoming drained, it is best to take a step back and look at the dynamic of the relationship and decide which boundaries are necessary. When you take the step to set healthy boundaries, you are taking a step to a healthier you!


If You Need Additional Support in Setting Healthy Boundaries, Counseling Can Help


Counseling is a great resource to help individual adults and couples to set healthy boundaries in life and in their relationships. If this is an area you struggle with, give us a call at 954-391-5305 for your complimentary consultation to discuss how we can help. 


Alyssa Woolslair provides counseling for adults and couples at our beautiful counseling office in Plantation, Florida as well as online therapy for those who reside in Florida.


For more information about her services, click here.

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