Managing Your Boundaries
Ensuring That Others Respect Your Needs
Good fences make good neighbors. – Old proverb
Fences allow you to protect what's valuable to you. They also allow you to control who and what enters your space.
Our personal boundaries do a similar job. They set the limits that separate us from other people – not necessarily to exclude interaction, but to protect what matters to us, and to control who enters our psychological space, as well as our physical space.
Boundaries also foster more productive work environments. Co-workers' differing values, needs and beliefs sometimes lead to conflict, resentment and stress, so clearly defined boundaries can help to prevent these negative reactions.
The #MeToo shockwave has also highlighted how important these boundaries are to all of us, as human beings.
But, if personal boundaries are such a vital part of our interpersonal interactions, why do so many of us struggle to build them?