How to Set Boundaries: The Key to Healthy Relationships

July 4, 2019


Let’s be real: many of us struggle with boundaries, and sometimes we aren’t even sure where to draw the line, when a boundary has been crossed, or how to communicate our boundaries to others.

Boundaries are a set of basic rules or guidelines that we set for ourselves to determine the types of behaviour we will tolerate, and those boundaries impact the health of our relationships with others, as well as with ourselves.

We can’t blame others for crossing our boundaries if we don’t make them clear.  It’s our responsibility to set the boundaries for ourselves and to protect them, but this can be easier said than done. 

After many requests for an episode all about boundaries, today I’m walking you through what boundaries are, the different types of boundaries, why they’re so crucial in relationships, how to enforce them, and figuring out the often uncomfortable conversations that can come with them.

When it comes to setting boundaries, there are some of the areas you want to think about:

  1. Know your own limits. Some boundaries you might not even you realize you have until someone crosses them. Use that as a gift to learn from. You can’t expect others to know your boundaries if you aren’t aware of them yourself.
  2. Check in with your gut / intuition. One of my fave questions: How does that feel for you? 
  3. Watch for red flags.  Anger and resentment are often signs that you have boundaries being crossed, or even general discomfort. 
  4. Be kind.
  5. Be direct. This is one of my gifts, but the downside is that sometimes people can take it harshly even when it’s not intended that way. 
  6. Trust the process. Trust yourself enough to set boundaries even when you are fearful of others’ reactions. Trust that others will handle your boundaries however they will handle them, and trust that the people that belong in your life are the ones that will respect your boundaries or at minimum be willing to have an open and honest conversation about them to better understand your viewpoint. 
  7. Understand that guilt (at least initially, and depending on how few boundaries you currently have) may very well be a natural and expected part of the process.  Use this opportunity to check in with your gut though, circling back to previous point: are you in your integrity for you? If so, you’re going to be able to show up as the best version of yourself for YOU, and for the people that respect you and your boundaries. There might be an adjustment period, but it will be worth it. Speaking of worth…..
  8. Know your worth. Because if you don’t think you’re worth it, why would you need boundaries? Exercising boundaries is going to challenge you, push you to do better, and none of that will be possible if you don’t think that you are deserving and worthy of respect – from yourself or from anyone else.


Journal Prompts:

“I will no longer let people ________.”

“I deserve _________.”

“I need to _________________ to protect my energy.”

“What am I tolerating from others that is draining?”


“Daring to set boundaries is about having the courage to love ourselves, even when we risk disappointing others.”

— Brené Brown

Links in this episode:

Episode #102, Practicing the Pause & Examining What We Tolerate with Tory Eletto

Episode #104, An Education Around Gaslighting & Manipulation with Meghan Campbell

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