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4 Effective Ways to Set Personal Boundaries With People

As told by a psychologist.

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Let's face it, relationships in today's world can get messy, be it with our friends, family or love interests.

In navigating the tricky waters of human behaviour, we often come to understand that boundaries are the invisible 'lines' that help define who we are and what we are willing to tolerate. Our personal boundaries also help protect us from unacceptable behaviour of other people in any given relationship.

It is up to an individual to communicate their boundaries. The goal isn't always to get someone to change their behaviour, it is just to get them to change unacceptable behaviour when they are around you. Most people simply react to such behaviour by complaining, whining or reacting unhappily, often in a passive- aggressive way.

However, according to a psychologist, by following these four simple steps, you can communicate what works for you and avoid drama in your relationships.

1. Request

Directly ask for the behaviour you want . We sometimes assume the other person knows what we want and then get upset when they don't give us what we need.

eg. 'I would like you to try and pay more attention to me while I talk' as opposed to 'why are you not listening to me'

2. Inform

Make the other person aware of their unacceptable behaviour. People are sometimes not even aware that they are offending you.

eg.' When you show up late for our appointments, I feel you disrespect me.'

3. Instruct

Tell others what you need from them. People don't automatically know what new behaviour you are asking for unless you tell them.

eg. 'I need you to put your phone away and talk to me when we are eating dinner together.'

4. Leave

When the other person is too emotional to engage in a mature dialogue, and is not receptive of your rational conversation, this can be an appropriate response.

eg.' It is not ok with me that you are yelling at me. I am open to discussing this at a later time, however, given the heated situation right now, I am leaving.'

By behaving in this manner you will get people to treat you with more respect while at the same time dealing with them in a calm, rational way.

Hmmmm, sure beats throwing a hissy fit and screaming doesn't it ?