Boundaries - Do you know yours?
Following on from Alex’s recent blog on Consent Matters and the conversation that is ongoing in the public domain, a really important aspect of personal safety is boundaries.
What are boundaries?
“Personal boundaries are guidelines, rules or limits that a person creates to identify reasonable, safe and permissible ways for other people to behave towards them and how they will respond when someone passes those limits.”
Knowing your boundaries?
From the thousands of secondary school students that we have spoken to over the last number of years an average of 80-85%, both male and female, have no understanding of what boundaries are and therefore are not aware of their own personal boundaries and the importance of them.
Why have boundaries?
Boundaries give a person space, the opportunity to think and make good choices. Boundaries allow people to be assertive in their choices, made with confidence. This is an invaluable life skill. Boundaries engender respect. Respect for oneself and for those we meet.
Learning and setting boundaries from an early age is so beneficial as a young persons moves forward on their life path towards and into adulthood.
Boundaries are of course a two way street. No one has the right to overstep another person’s boundaries. Knowing and putting in place your own boundaries, clearly identifying them is the first step. Then if someone does overstep the mark, letting them in know a very clear way is really important.
How to know your boundaries?
Everyone’s personal and emotional boundaries are different. What works for one person may not work for another.
Everyone has their own personal space, which they identify with. This can sometimes mean that when a person is feeling uncomfortable, awkward or vulnerable their personal space is being challenged. The boundaries have been crossed.
Your own personal boundaries are important to you as it develops your confidence, self esteem and can determine how other people are around you.
In conclusion, it is important that we all think about our boundaries, and the impact of not having boundaries. We are safer and more confident people when we know and set our own boundaries.