According to Buck, there are ways to establish limits without being abrasive. The most important thing is to be strong in your conviction.
“Be assertive without being aggressive,” he said. “Aggression dilutes the message. Assertiveness means you are reasonable and direct without forcing it.”
8. You learn how to say “no.”
“No” may be a small word but it’s certainly powerful. The most basic way of establishing a boundary is declining anything you don’t have the capacity to handle.
In a blog on her 2016 resolution, actress Lena Dunham detailed how her life started to change once she expressed the two-letter word more often in order to overcome her people-pleasing habits. (Spoiler: It became more fulfilling.)
It was a slow process, but a polite ‘no’ soon entered my vernacular … And something miraculous happened: my personal life followed suit. … People respond well to honesty, to reality. They understand. And so with those no’s, YES sprung back up everywhere. Funny how that works.
9. You end up doing things you actually want to do.
Imagine your life without unnecessary obligations all because you started exercising your right to say “no.” Limits free you up for more opportunity to do the work and activities that you actually desire to do.
“Boundaries open up the possibility for many life-changing benefits,” Buck said. “They help you respond more effectively to demands on your time and energy.”
10. You become a more understanding person.
“One of the most shocking findings of my work was the idea that the most compassionate people I have interviewed over the last 13 years, were absolutely the most boundaried,” Brown said.
And it makes sense: When you’re compassionate toward yourself about what you can tolerate, you’re better able to express that to other people who have their own boundaries they want to follow.
A more fulfilling life, a warm personality and better relationships all because you set up healthy limits for yourself? Doesn’t sound like a bad deal.