Emotional boundaries in dating


For example, you have a right to privacy, to say “no,” to be addressed with courtesy and respect, to change your mind or cancel commitments, to ask people you hire to work the way you want, to ask for help, to be left alone, to conserve your energy, and not to answer a question, the phone, or an email. Think of them as self-discipline and healthy management of time, thoughts, emotions, behavior and impulses.

Think about all the situations where these rights apply. If you’re procrastinating, doing things you neither have to nor want to do, or overdoing and not getting enough rest, recreation, or balanced meals, you may be neglecting internal physical boundaries.

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Write how you feel and how you currently handle them. Learning to manage negative thoughts and feelings empowers you, as does the ability to follow through on goals and commitments to yourself.

How often do you say “yes” when you’d like to say “no? Healthy emotional and mental internal boundaries help you not to assume responsibility for, or obsess about, other people’s feelings and problems – something codependents commonly do. You think about yourself, rather than automatically agreeing with others’ criticism or advice.

The reverse is also true: there may be something that you’re not ok with at the beginning, but with time and trust, you become comfortable with it.

Both you and your partner should feel free to openly talk about your changing needs and wants.

You’re then empowered to set external emotional boundaries if you choose.