Gionta suggested starting with a small boundary that isn’t threatening to you, and then incrementally increasing to more challenging boundaries.

“Build upon your success, and [at first] try not to take on something that feels overwhelming.”“Setting boundaries takes courage, practice and support,” Gionta said.

Having healthy boundaries means “knowing and understanding what your limits are,” Dr. Below, she offers insight into building better boundaries and maintaining them.1. You can’t set good boundaries if you’re unsure of where you stand.

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Resentment usually “comes from being taken advantage of or not appreciated.” It’s often a sign that we’re pushing ourselves either beyond our own limits because we feel guilty (and want to be a good daughter or wife, for instance), or someone else is imposing their expectations, views or values on us, she said.“When someone acts in a way that makes you feel uncomfortable, that’s a cue to us they may be violating or crossing a boundary,” Gionta said.3. With some people, maintaining healthy boundaries doesn’t require a direct and clear-cut dialogue.

Usually, this is the case if people are similar in their communication styles, views, personalities and general approach to life, Gionta said.

She suggested thinking of these feelings on a continuum from one to 10. If you’re at the higher end of this continuum, during an interaction or in a situation, Gionta suggested asking yourself, what is causing that?

What is it about this interaction, or the person’s expectation that is bothering me?Also, think about the people you surround yourself with, she said. For instance, if your workday is eight hours a day, but your co-workers stay at least 10 to 11, “there’s an implicit expectation to go above and beyond” at work, Gionta said.It can be challenging being the only one or one of a few trying to maintain healthy boundaries, she said.Partners might need to talk about how much time they need to maintain their sense of self and how much time to spend together.4. Fear, guilt and self-doubt are big potential pitfalls, Gionta said.We might fear the other person’s response if we set and enforce our boundaries.Again, this is where tuning into your feelings and needs and honoring them becomes critical.7. Gionta helps her clients make self-care a priority, which also involves giving yourself permission to put yourself first.