Boundary Issues: Using Boundary Intelligence to Get the Intimacy You Want and the Independence You Need In Life, Love, and Work

Published By: Wiley

Book Category: Non-Fiction, Self-Help

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Reviewed by Sue Stein

I always thought boundaries were a way of keeping others at a safe distance and out of my personal business. Instead, after reading this book, I learned that boundaries can also be a way to connect with others, and allow greater closeness and intimacy with the people in our lives. In order to do this, we need to cultivate something the author calls "boundary intelligence," which is an intentional management of three aspects of boundaries: their permeability, flexibility, and complexity.

The four elements of Boundary Intelligence are: awareness, insight, intention and action. It makes sense--if someone is stepping all over us, or if we are trespassing on their boundaries, we need first of all to be aware of the transgression, and then have the insight to realize that we need to adjust our boundary's permeability. Then we can form the intention to change and formulate a plan of action to address the boundary transgression.

All of us have different boundary styles, and an interesting quiz in Chapter 3 helps us understand our inner boundaries; those we have with others in our lives; and how their complexity, flexibility, and permeability all impact our dealings with others. I found this very interesting and helpful.

The book had several other quizzes, but they lacked enough explanation for me to make real sense of them. Throughout the book, numerous anecdotes and examples tell of boundaries being trampled on and ignored, all of which further illustrated the necessity of understanding and learning how to successfully negotiate boundaries with the people in our lives.

One area dealt with something the author termed "emotional trespass." This is when "we may not know exactly where our boundaries are, but we know when they've been violated." I can think of innumerable examples of this in my own life, but I never had a way to describe it before.

Armchair Interviews says: Boundary Intelligence will help you navigate your way through all the relationships in your life

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