This may seem a little backward. I’m going to list some statements demonstrating verbal boundary setting. I’m doing this before writing about the subject.
I can explain boundary setting all day, but it really comes through in these words, don’t you think?
✦ It’s not OK to leer at me like that.
✦ I don’t agree that you have a right to judge my appearance, to put me on your 1-10 scale for beauty, or to make comments on my clothing.
✦ Stop trying to take a parental role over me. I will not be treated like a child.
✦ Your greater years of experience at this company do not mean you have every answer, nor do you have the right to belittle my ideas because I’m new.
✦ I will not stand here and take your anger. I’m going in the other room. We will talk later when we can have a more meaningful conversation.
✦ You keep telling me that “You just don’t understand!” Perhaps your communication isn’t as clear as you think. Can you find a way to re-phrase what you are saying?
✦ When you make fun of me in front of your friends, I feel you value their laughter more than you value me, and I don’t like that.
✦ I find it thoughtless of you to say you are going to meet me and then show up an hour late without texting or calling me.
✦ I love talking to you, but I don’t want to hear any office gossip.
✦ Unless it’s an emergency, don’t call me at home. I work 8-5, Monday through Friday and that’s it.
✦ Excuse me. I don’t appreciate being interrupted. I would like to finish what I was saying.
✦ When you say dismissively, “OK, I get it. I get it,” I feel you are trying to shut me down so you can move away from the subject.
✦ I don’t know if you realize this or not, but you are standing way too close to me for normal, business discussions. Step back a bit. No, more. There, that’s better.
✦ I appreciate you have strong feelings about this, but now is not a good time to talk. Can I meet you later?
✦ I don’t appreciate being badgered to give you my reasons. My thoughts on this are my own, and I don’t owe them to anyone.
QUESTION: If someone is stepping over your “No” and pushing past sensible boundaries of time, energy, intimacy, money, and resources, do you find it tough to set boundaries with them? Why is it so hard sometimes?
Thank you for visiting and learning about self defense.
If you think others can benefit, please pass it on!
Photo Credit: James Emery