Create and enforce boundaries.

Unconditional caring requires self-love.

To be strong enough to consistently care about others, you must first truly love and care for yourself; otherwise, you can easily get into excessive negative self-sacrifice that fuels resentment that undermines unconditional caring. Loving yourself includes, but is not limited to

  • honestly
    knowing who you are: your moral compass, strengths, and challenges;
  • acknowledging that you are not perfect and allowing yourself to fail, learn, and grow;
  • being kind to yourself: caring for your body, mind, and spirit;
  • stopping all negative talk, replacing it with meditation and positive talk;
  • constantly forgiving yourself; and
  • being true to yourself: establishing your limits and your boundaries, and sticking to them.

Boundaries are unofficial rules about what should not be done; and limits that define acceptable behavior. Establishing limits and enforcing them is one of the most difficult aspects of loving yourself. Creating boundaries involves at least six steps:

Respect yourself.

Decide what your core values are.

Change yourself (even if you can’t change others).

Decide (write out) the consequences ahead of time.

Let your behavior, not your words speak for you.

Say what you mean and mean what you say (integrity). [1]

More to Ponder

  • Which of these steps do you need to work on?
  • Is there anything you would personally add to this list?

Ready to assess your self-love?  Check out the  Wellness Compass Travel Guide, Chapter 5. Unconditional Caring, Activity 5: Demonstrating Unconditional Love

[1] K. Obrien, “6 Steps to Set Good Boundaries,” Mindbodygreen, 2014, retrieved on June 10, 2016, from


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2 thoughts on “Create and enforce boundaries.

  1. This segment is great as it comes back to identifying one’s core values and then setting priorities and goals , the key steps to launch the wellness journey.

    • So true! Creating and enforcing boundaries confidently and consistently is one of the keys to happiness. Seem my comments to your reply on the “Irresponsible blips” post for how I have learned (just in the last few years!!) to apply boundaries to not giving in or feeling guilty about all the requests for volunteering and $$$.

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