Boundaries, Heart Check, Recovery, Warning Signs


Applying healthy boundaries is easy in theory, but that’s rarely the case in practice. As an empath, the Heart Check is something I do to remind myself when I should say “no” to a person or situation. Sometimes that means walking away from a relationship or situation completely–and that is just good self-care.”

When I’m evaluating when I should apply a boundary and say “no” to a person or situation I follow three simple steps. A Three Strikes You’re Out, approach to access how I feel about a situation and where I stand with my peace. If the situation fails the Heart Check then it’s time to be firm in my decision and stand.


This simple word means so much, doesn’t it? We can tell a lot about a person or situation if respect is involved. How do you know you are being respected? What does respect look like and feel like?

Here are a few self check questions you can ask to decide for yourself:

  • Does this person/situation value my opinion or feelings?
  • Have they demonstrated they care about my thoughts, feelings or POV before?
  • Do they speak kindly and use words that lift me up and not tear me down as a person?
  • Do they refrain from pressuring me into a rash decision?
  • Do they always get their way and care little for the consequences their actions mean for me?


This means that they give you what you give them in return. Not every relationship or situation is always a 50/50 split, but it’s important that you are not always being the person compromising and giving your all.

  • Take weight of your relationship. Are you the giver and they the taker? Or does it feel equally weighted?
  • Are you tired and emotionally/physically exhausted from constantly giving your all and getting little in return?
  • Is this a friendship, partnership, or low value relationship? How much of your energy does this person/situation need or deserve from your other life demands?

Pattern of Behavior

Time is a great testament to how valuable your relationships are. Actions speak much louder than words ever could. Over time if your relationship falls more into the negative side, you know it’s time to apply some boundaries. Positive patterns bring peace, make us feel validated, valued and respected. Commitments and promises are made with full intention to be fulfilled.

Here are several questions you can apply to determine if you are in positive or negative pattern of behavior:

  • Does the person make promises they never keep?
  • Are you baited with a commitment then presented with something different?
  • How honest are they with you?
  • Do you trust them?
  • Do they often let you down?
  • Are you there for them in a pinch, but they barely show up?
  • Do they use language of affirmation or hurt?
  • Are they manipulative, controlling or demanding?
  • How does the relationship make you feel?
  • Is there a lot of tension and drama in the relationship?
  • Is it easy or hard to continue to have a relationship with this person?
  • What value does this relationship bring my life? Is it worth my investment?
  • Is this person a project I’m trying to fix? It’s not my job to fix people, and I don’t need or want another person to caretake that is unhealthy and drains me.