Boundaries 101 & Resources

 What is a boundary?

Boundaries are a life enhancing system of “yes‟” and “no's.” They are stop signs and borders you install to protect yourself so that it is clear that you own your life, make good choices, and pursue the authentic expression of who you are in the way you live, love, give and relate.” -Unknown 

Examples of boundaries are:

 Emotional and physical space between you and another person. 
 Limit or line over which you will not allow anyone to cross because of the negative impact of its being crossed in the past. 
 Established set of limits over your physical and emotional well-being which you expect others to respect in their relationship with you.
  Emotional and physical space you need in order to be the real you without the pressure from others to be something that you are not. 
 Emotional and/or physical perimeter of your life which is or has been violated when you were emotionally, verbally, physically and/or sexually abused.
  Healthy emotional and physical distance you can maintain between you and another so that you do not become overly enmeshed and/or dependent. 
 Appropriate amount of emotional and physical closeness you need to maintain so that you and another do not become too detached and/or overly independent. 
 Clearly defined limits within which you are free to be yourself with no restrictions placed on you by others as to how to think, feel or act. 
 Set of parameters which make you a unique, autonomous and free individual who has the freedom to be a creative, original, idiosyncratic problem solver. (Setting Healthy Personal Boundaries, n.d.)

3 Signs your boundaries are being ignored: 

1. Over Enmeshment: This symptom requires everyone to follow the rule that everyone must do everything together and that everyone is to think, feel and act in the same way. No one is allowed to deviate from the family or group norms. Everyone looks homogeneous. Uniqueness, autonomy and idiosyncratic behaviors are viewed as deviations from the norm

2. Invisibility: This symptom involves your pulling in or over-controlling so that others even yourself never know how you are really feeling or what you are really thinking. Your goal is not to be seen or heard so that your boundaries are not violated.

3. Cold and Distant: This builds walls or barriers to insure that others do not permeate or invade your emotional or physical space. This too can be a defense, due to previous hurt and pain, from being violated, hurt, ignored or rejected. This stance is your declaration that "I've drawn the line over which I dare you to cross.'' It is a way to keep others out and put them off. Adapted from: (Setting Healthy Personal Boundaries, n.d.)



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Setting Healthy Personal Boundaries. (n.d.). Retrieved from

Setting Healthy Personal Boundaries. (n.d.). Retrieved from

Learn Your Character Strengths & Personal Traits | VIA Institute. (2020). Retrieved November 15, 2020, from website: