We live in a fast-paced and often stressful society. That carries into the working world. So much so that according to the American Institute of Stress, 83% of U.S. workers deal with work-related stress, and about a quarter of workers say that their job is the most stressful thing in their lives. 

Workplace stress can create anxiety, depression, burnout, and more. It can impact your life outside your job, as well. 

One of the best things you can do to fight back against these things is to set boundaries. Establishing limits at work is a great way to not only enhance your career, but your well-being. 

If you’re not sure how to set healthy boundaries in the workplace, let’s cover a few tips you can use to do so effectively. 

Why Are Workplace Boundaries Important? 

shaking hands at workThere’s a misconception that boundaries have to come across as rude or demanding. That isn’t the case at all. When done correctly, you can set realistic limits for yourself that are respectful and appropriate for the workplace. 

Doing so will help to reduce stress, establish a better work-life balance, and help you experience more personal growth. Boundaries can help you become more confident in your abilities, and they will earn you respect from co-workers and others in your industry. 

From a career standpoint, establishing limits can boost your productivity. When you aren’t saying “yes” to everything, you can focus on the tasks that matter most. Not only will you get more done, but you’ll be able to put more focus on establishing your career goals. Chances are, you have values and objectives you want to stick to. By keeping boundaries in place, it will be easier to prioritize those objectives so you can move forward in your career. 

Setting boundaries will also improve your job satisfaction. If your career has contributed to extra stress or burnout, you might start to feel resentful about it. When you set healthy limits, you can start to enjoy what you do once more without feeling overwhelmed by it. 

Not All Boundaries Are the Same

If you’re not sure how to establish limits at work, consider the types of boundaries that would make the most impact for you. 

For example, if you’re stressed in the workplace, you should be more focused on setting limits that will benefit your mental health. That includes things like not allowing others to influence your opinions, and avoiding getting involved in negative gossip at work. 

Emotional boundaries can include saying “no” to things, and taking time to practice self-care. Consider what you really need before taking the right steps to put limits in place. 

How to Set Boundaries at Work

Communication is key if you want to clearly and effectively establish limits in the workplace. Don’t let words get in the way of being clear and concise with your needs. Communication can reflect what you will and will not do, what your expectations are, and what behavior you will and won’t accept. 

One of the easiest ways to set a healthy boundary is to limit the amount of overtime you work. Say “no” to extra hours that are going to cause burnout. If possible, delegate certain responsibilities to others, and if you want to get things done in a timely manner without having to work extra hours, set boundaries on your productivity time, too. Let your co-workers know that you don’t want to be interrupted at certain points of the day. 

Setting boundaries isn’t rude or disrespectful. In fact, it can be a very professional way to not only earn respect but to feel better about your career. Keep these ideas in mind to implement them in your workplace, and you’re likely to see a difference in your productivity and well-being. Reach out to learn more about job and work support.